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Beer and garden: Two of the best words in the English language. Even better, when you smush them together they conjure up images of carefree imbibing, hanging out with friends and soaking up the summer sun. Germans may have invented the beer garden (or Biergarten) but they hardly lay sole claim. Here are 7 of the best beer gardens around the world:

Bohemian Hall and Beer Garden, New York City
It’s a beer hall fit for a queen or rather Queens to be exact. This legendary watering hole debuted in 1905 making it the city’s oldest beerhall and also one of New York‘s largest outdoor drinking spaces. Czech beers abound, but so do craft brews. There’s also a full-service food menu serving up authentic dishes you probably can’t pronounce like tlacenka (pork terrine) and smazak (fried cheese). Live music, standup comedy and club nights add to the already boisterous energy.

bohemian-hall-czech-friends

Photo Credit: Matt Hageman

Biergarten, San Francisco
German eatery Suppenkuche has long been a San Francisco treasure, the rare restaurant that could make German food look cool and sexy (their Grosses Fruhstuck or “big breakfast” always reminds us of the motherland). So it was thrilling to see that the owners opened up Biergarten just a couple blocks away on pretty Octavia Boulevard. Biergarten keeps limited hours, but is as fine a place as any for a nice wheat beer and a hearty pretzel.

Related: While you’re in the Golden State, check out this ultimate California road trip!

The Chinese Tower at English Garden, Munich
You didn’t really think we were going to omit Germany from this list, did you? There are dozens of al fresco drinking establishments scattered through the Bavarian beer-crazy city of Munich and while we’re well aware this is a mighty competitive category, few can deny the charms of the sprawling, outdoor beer hall which can accommodate up to 7,000 drinkers in the shadows of the 82-foot Chinese Tower which itself sits in the middle of the city’s idyllic English Garden.

Munich

Letna Beer Garden, Prague
Why can’t more U.S. beer gardens be located in a leafy park aside a river and with spectacular city views in the distance? The only beer on tap at iconic Letna Beer Garden is the Czech Republic’s own Gambrinus 10 and food is limited, but as cyclists, roller bladers and pedestrians pass by, you may just wonder why they don’t park it already and enjoy a cold one.

letna_beer_garden_prague

Photo: Courtesy of PragueBeerGarden.com

Estabrook Beer Garden, Milwaukee
Now this is a city that springs to mind when we think of beer. Estabrook might be the only beer garden on the list that can be reached via canoe or kayak. It’s a bit of a drive from downtown Milwaukee, but visitors are nevertheless rewarded with a bucolic park setting next to the Milwaukee River and the rushing sounds of a nearby waterfall. Beer garden savories are served alongside brews imported from the Munich Hofbrauhaus. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own stein.

Milwaukee

Photo Credit: MIlwaukee County Parks

Forest Beer Garden, Tokyo
It’s hard to believe seating for 1,000 can get snatched up so quickly, but expect large crowds at peak times at this pretty, tree-lined beer garden and urban oasis at the Meiji Shrine’s Outer Gardens in Tokyo. Apparently locals go nuts for the all-you-can-eat-and-drink option that lasts for two hours and includes tasty BBQ victuals.

The Leather Bottle, London
Housed behind a 300-year-old pub (which used to have a blacksmith attached to it), the Leather Bottle in Southwest London boasts the biggest beer garden in the city. The menu hews toward locally sourced versions of traditional Brit pub fare such as fish and chips or the pie of the day while the beer menu is split between cask-conditioned ales, specialty lagers and ciders. If the sun peeps out, just curl up inside one of the shaded beach huts.

 

Tagged: California, Europe, New York, Uncategorized

Jason Heidemann

Jason Heidemann

Jason is an associate editor at Orbitz, a social media marketing consultant and a freelance cultural reporter for numerous publications. His works has been featured in the Huffington Post, Time Out, Passport, the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Magazine and many others.

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