Munich: Residenz to Bavarian Royals and an EU Austerity Drinking Tour

The 140th straight day of travel ticks over with my wife and I (still married) jetting across Germany into Munich.  Strasbourg charmed us with its bilingual, Alsatian wines, Christmas markets, and history (post here). What will the land of lager bring our EU Austerity Drinking Tour?

EU map New York to Munich Day 140We leave late from a fabulous AirBnB apartment in the burbs. Steely snow blankets a gray city.

Munich River View IcyWe pass neoclassical buildings and monuments.  The walk warms us up and soon we discover town squares and golden architecture that almost compensates for the lack of sun.

Golden Munich ChurchWe tumble into lovely Christmas markets that feed from one square to another like a snake with bulges.  The town clock churns with wooden automata.  But unlike Strasbourg or Luxemburg, everything is meat. This is Germany. We finally find a café with sad cheese sandwiches.

Fueled but still cold, we visit the Royal Treasury, which packs its walls with bedazzling finery from Germany’s earliest kings.

Munich Crown  As well as the most bling-tastic, miniature knight and horse ever seen:

Crazy Munich HorseAfter a few hours of getting overwhelmed by toiletries, crucifixes, and odd cups, we enter the Residenz: Germany’s largest palace, where Bavaria’s Kings ruled, dined, and wallowed in their own opulence in 130 rooms.

The audio guide takes us to shell-bedecked Grotto: one of ten courtyards:

Munich Grotto ResidenzAround the corned and down the stairs we expect a small hallway and find what can only be described as the largest Renaissance hall north of Italy:

Residenz Antiquity HallThis Antiquarium fills endless niches with (mostly real) busts and statues from Duke Albert V’s eclectic collection.

We traipse through further rooms of extravagance, from Baroque, to Mannerist, Neoclassical and beyond.

Munich gives me HeadspinThere are porcelain cabinets made out of porcelain…to hold porcelain. Bedrooms were built for visiting popes. A hundred dish gold place-setting.  Everything is so atrociously ornate, busy, and obsessed with minutia.  Gold Place settingWith winter’s sun setting we find the Cuviliés Theater, an utter gem of a space, where Mozart once held a few gigs. Cuvilies Theater MunichWe have the fanciest-pantsiest hangover imaginable.

We head out to get groceries for dinner, drink, and oh yes, a cow:

Tracy Milka CowThis being the home to Oktoberfest, we grab three Munich beers. They are all Hell beers (literally “light-colored” nothing to do with damnation) but of different kinds (Lager, Tegernseer, and Weissbier.

Munich beerThey are all good, refreshing, yet don’t register much to our, as then, untrained beer palates. I also forgot to take notes. Drinking in the palace was enough.

Next Monday’s post purges our fabulous hangover with a trip to Dachau.



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3 Responses to Munich: Residenz to Bavarian Royals and an EU Austerity Drinking Tour

  1. sand110 says:

    Dizzying detail!

  2. Pingback: Scheurebe Wine from Bruder Dr Becker, Rheinessen, Munich, Germany | WAYWARD WINE

  3. Pingback: Dachau | WAYWARD WINE

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