I won’t bore you with details about accommodation etc, but I easily found my way to the flat I had reserved in central Munich.. With the lovely summer weather and the fact that the train ticket from the airport into town gave me unlimited travel on the S-bahn or suburban lines for the rest of the day, I decided to explore a bit.
The village Aying lies to the south of Munich, surrounded by green fields. Rather sleepy in the heat, families on their bikes, people relaxing in their gardens. Everything looks spotless, this is not where down-and-outs live.
The Ayinger brewery is easy to spot, the brewery tap and beer garden are a bit further away. 15 minutes walk, perhaps. It is well worth both the train journey and the walk, this must be the ultimate beer garden. Benches and tables under huge chestnut trees. Several beers on tap, including a Kellerbier poured from wooden barrels. If there ever was an occation for ordering a full liter Maß, this was certainly it. This is a self service beer garden, where you get your food and refreshements from a cluster of booths. Fast and convenient. A mix of guests, quiet conversation, birds singing. No loud groups of American tourists, no laminated menus in English and Japanese.
And the beer? Well, this is as far from a blind test you can imagine. The whole setting is magic, so that adds to the enjoyment. Incredibly aromatic Bavarian hops, sweet malt, perfect balance. Grapefruit, peaches, a hint of vinegar, a touch of the oak barrel.
If you want to splurge, the brewery has a very upmarket hotel and restaurant across the street. But I felt no urge to explore that. There are brewery tours, too, check their web site for details.