I hate rushing. Especially to catch planes or trains. Not good for the heart, especially in the heat. And I'm quite keen on making it through another year thrombie-free. I've sort of promised it to myself.
That's why the train I booked to whisk us up to Franconia left several hours after our flight was due to land. The Hauptbahnhof is an irritatingly long ride from the airport. Up to 40-odd minutes, depending on which S-Bahn you take.
When we get to the station we have the best part of three hours before our train. Though there is an upside. And a big one at that. Plenty of time to nip to the Augustiner Keller, handily only a short walk away. In a jiffy our bags are dumped and we're off in search of beer. Beer served as god intended, straight from the wood.
At least that was the plan. We get diverted.
I have a thing about pubs. I'm quite good at spotting and remembering them. I blame all those years assembling pub guides. That and being a bit of a pisshead. Emerging from the station onto Arnulfstrasse, I spot this:
"Oh, look, Andrew, there's a Hofbrauerei Tegernsee pub. They do a lovely Spezial."
"I guess that means you want to go in."
"Spezial is one of those styles the beer geeks haven't noticed, it's between . . . .
"It's OK dad, we can go in there if you want."
". . . . a Vollbier and a Märzen . . . .
"Daaaad, I said yes."
" . . . but not quite . . . . what? Great. Brilliant."
It's a bit posh inside. And hot. And Nearly empty. A waiter burls up, seemingly impervious to the heat.
"What do you have on draught?"
The reply disappoints: "Helles, Pils and Weizen."
Damn. No Spezial. Helles it was. For us both.
This is what it looks like:
Though obviously not quite as blurry (it is the first beer of the day, well unless you count that can of Heinken I had at Schiphol, though that was purely for cooling purposes). Not quite enough light to get a sharp snap.
If I were taking notes, I'd be able to give you some sort of crappy description. But I'm not, because I'm on holiday with my son.
"I hope you're not going to start writing everything down, dad, like you did when you dragged me and Lexie around Holland."
"No, the thought never entered my mind." I say, surreptitiously slipping my notebook back into my bag.
Soft, bit of that German hop thing going on. That's the best I can do from memory.
Do we make it to Augustiner Keller? You'll find that out next time.
Gasthaus Tschigg - *A tavern on the mountainside above Marling/Marlengo in the Südtirol/Alto Adige. *The photos tell you all you need to know. It was my lunch stop on a hike ...
5 hours ago