Munich - Restaurants
Munich is quite cosmopolitan and this is reflected in the variety of restaurants. Thankfully the fast food market has not been saturated by too many fast-food chains, although burger restaurants can be found at various locations.
Since the main meal of the day is served at lunch time, evening dinners are quite a minor affair, hence you do not often see German children dining out at night with their parents. Having said that, you see plenty of babies and children in strollers at beer gardens.
Traditional Bavarian restaurants and Italian restaurants abound. Pizza is served to you unsliced. Indian restaurants are also quite common, although Thai, Japanese, Chinese and Vietnamese all tend to get bundled into generic 'Asian' restaurants. You have to specifically ask for chopsticks. As someone coming from Asia I found this quite amusing! Another common cuisine is Turkish. These businesses mainly cater to the quick food (as opposed to fast food), lower-priced end of the market. With slight more effort-you can find Greek and French restaurants. Spanish and Mexican cuisine tends to get lumped together, and these restaurants always have an extensive cocktail list.
Not surprisingly, vegetarian restaurants are extremely rare, although at most traditional Bavarian restaurants vegetarians will often have a choice of more than one dish (in addition to salad and dessert). Vegetarian main dishes tend not to be served at work canteens. Many Germans do not consider bacon to be 'meat', and frequently dishes containing bacon are listed under the vegetarian section of the menu.
Cafes are very popular, particularly in Schwabing and Neuhausen. Outdoor dining is very popular across the whole city in the Summer.
When you go into a restaurant, you don't need to wait to be seated. However, don't sit at a table that has Reserviert (reserved) or Stammtisch meaning tribal table, as this is reserved for customers who meet regularly each week or month.
Generally it is very difficult to get the attention of the waiting staff. They are amazing to watch. They are able to scan the room at eye-level but manage to avoid eye contact with all of the customers. The way Bavarians attract attention is by straightening their arm and raising one finger in the air. I've tried this, and it works!
The waiter brings the bill only when you ask for it. If there is a large group the waiting staff will automatically ask zusammen oder getrennt, meaning will you be paying together or separately, and expect immediate payment. If you pay separately, the waiter will go round the table and ask each person exactly what they had. There's no excuse for not remembering how much you had to drink!
A service charge is usually included in the bill, but you generally round up to the next euro, and possibly throw in an extra euro per person if not paying separately. Tell the waiter the amount you wish to pay, plus tip. If you do not require change, say stimmt so meaning it's correct like that.
More substantial tips are expected at classier places. As with most businesses in Munich, it is better to pay in cash than by EC card or credit card. Waiters will often ask if you have anything smaller when you present them with the 50 or 100 euro note the ATM spat at you.
Author's note: the following list of restaurants are personally recommended. Feel free to send your favourites to Paguro as you discover them using 'Add Comment.
- Bavarian Liebighof
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 29 5405
- Asian Hong Kong Bar
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 2 01 0205
- Indian Maharaja
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 13 01 2482
- Indian Maharani
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 77 6713
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 29 01 360
Tacky, yet traditional!
1 Buttermelcherstr 5
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 24 21 7885
- Spanish/Mexican Enchilada
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 52 2297
Liebigsr and Reitmorstr
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 21 66 8163