Saturday, September 13, 2008

Friday, 12 September 2008: Luzern

Yesterday: Zürich

Addenda from last night: I had a couple of beers at a nearby pizza place while waiting for Paris to get back from the office.

Pizzeria Riehenhof, Basel, Switzerland

Eichhof Ziegel Hof Panache

Eichhof Hubertus

We decided to have dinner at Restaurant Pinguin «zem Bier-Huus». They've got a reputation for having the greatest variety of beer in town, so we were looking forward to trying a bunch of beers that we'd never had before.

Restaurant Pinguin «zem Bier-Huus», Basel

Each beer at Pinguin is served in its own proper glass, and they have a store at the front where you can buy the glassware for your home use.

Glassware at Restaurant Pinguin «zem Bier-Huus»

Their beer menu is a huge three-ring binder that includes information about the breweries, the history of beer, beer styles, and even samples of ingredients.

Beer menu at Restaurant Pinguin «zem Bier-Huus»

Thumbing through the beer menu, we found that they do in fact have a great selection. Unfortunately, a whole lot of the beers were American microbrews and others that we had already tried. But we did find a few new ones for the book, and here they are:

Boxer Brunette

Dubuisson Cuvée des Trolls

Boxer La Biére du Demon

Calanda Dunkel

Lindemans Gueuze Foudroyante

Hoegaarden De Verboden Frucht

So the Pinguin is worth a visit, but I have to say that the service left a lot to be desired. We were the only people in the place, and it was still 20 or 30 minutes from the end of one beer to the ordering of the next, and another 45 minutes before we could get our bill.

Today, I set course for Rathaus Brauerei Restaurant in Luzern.

Rathaus Brauerei Restaurant, Luzern, Switzerland

Mash tun at Rathaus Brauerei Restaurant

Rathaus Brauerei doesn't have a cellar on-site. This picture shows part of the route the brewer has to take to get to his cellar. He pumps the wort through underground pipes to the whirlpool and fermenters there. [Map]

This clothing store is the entrance to the Rathaus cellar. It feels like something out of Get Smart.

Rathaus Brauerei fermenters

Serving tanks at Rathaus Brauerei Restaurant. Once the beer is finished fermenting in the cellar up the street, it gets pumped back down the hill to these tanks at the bar.

Rathaus Naturtrüb, available year-round

Rathaus Heubier, the current seasonal offering

Back in Basel, it was time to return the bottles to Unser Bier and claim our CHF 9.00 ($8.05) deposit. As it happens, their pub is open Thursday and Friday evenings, so we stopped in for a couple.

The bar at Unser Bier, Basel

The brewhouse at Unser Bier, Basel

Unser Bier Weizen

There is one other small brewery in Basel, called Käppelijoch. My search for this beer had been unsuccessful so far, but there were rumors of one more bar, the Bar-O-Meter on Falknerstrasse. Alas, there was no sign of the Bar-O-Meter on Falknerstrasse, and I never did find Käppelijoch Bier. Next time, I'll try contacting the brewery directly.

After walking around in the rain a while, we settled on Restaurant zum braunen Mutz for dinner and Feldschlösschen beers.

Restaurant zum braunen Mutz, Basel

Tomorrow: Paris (the city), unexpectedly

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