I have been waiting for the new “Asbury Festhalle & Biergarten” to open since the fall of 2013, when I first heard about it. They finally welcomed the public on Feb. 7th and we finally made our way there on Saturday night. It was completely packed, as expected, but we made the most of it, using an actual “barrel” to gather around and use as our table. It was loud & crowded, with packed, long picnic tables, just like a typical German beer hall should be.
The first order of business was of course, to order a beer. The menu is lengthy, but impressive, with the “Hofbräu Dunkel” immediately catching my eye. I had enjoyed many a “Dunkel” & “Dunken” during my time in Europe so I excited to see this variety on the menu. It was as flavorful as I remembered and the giant mug brought me right back to my night at the Hofbräuhaus in Munich.
The food menu is equally impressive. We decided to start with a Bavarian “Bretzel” (and a kids frank for my starving son). Both came quickly and were delicious. A few rounds later, alcohol-induced hunger kicked in and we settled on one Bratwurst and one Polish Keilbasa as a perfect first-time sampling. The portions were huge, and each dish was served with sauerkraut, potato salad, mustard, and bread; plenty of food for the 4 of us.
What I was most craving, however, was the “Spatzle.” These delectable, egg noodle nuggets are boiled, then pan-fried in butter and topped with a little salt… they’re also a personal favorite of mine from when I lived and worked in Switzerland. I’m happy to report that they were absolutely perfect and will appear on my table every time I come here.
Last but not least, we quieted my son with the “Cokolada Cake” – a gigantic piece of chocolate-buttermilk cake, topped with vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce, and cherries – a work of art (and calories) in its own right.
Proximity brings closeness, as they say… and in this atmosphere, it’s almost impossible to not make a few new friends! This happy bunch was seated at the “real table” behind us… the one we secretly coveted all night. No worries… next time we’ll just get there a little earlier or come back on a week night when it’s not quite so crowded. Definitely 2 thumbs up on this one… their hard work, and dedication to keeping things authentic, have clearly paid off.
One last thing to note… there’s also a 9,000 square foot ROOFTOP Biergarten here just waiting for the weather to warm up!!!
Thanks Dan, Stacey & Dave for the fun night!