New Member Spotlight:: Bavarian Bierhaus

Gemütlichkeit [noun] // gah·moot·lich·kite: a German-language word that describes the general feeling or state of warmth, friendliness and good cheer.

This is exactly the feeling that Bob Krumm and Brian Kehl experienced while spending time in the famed beer halls of Bavaria when they were stationed in Germany with the United States Army. Upon their return to the States after years abroad, Krumm and Kehl, along with several close friends, wanted to recreate those traditional beer hall experiences in Music City.

With a mission to make every day feel like Oktoberfest, Bavarian Bierhaus opened its doors last year in a large space adjoining the Opry Mills Mall that accommodates more than 500 guests inside and an additional 120 in the outdoor biergarten.

“We felt that this type of restaurant didn’t truly exist in Nashville, and we knew that we could present this German tradition to Nashvillians in an authentic manner,” Krumm said.

Before entering the expansive hall lined with long tables and benches, guests are greeted by a mural on the back wall depicting Oktoberfest – a popular autumnal beer festival – and a small store stocked with classically German goods like cuckoo clocks, lederhosen, dirndls, Kinder chocolate bars and more.

The decor is simple and cozy, with hops hanging from the ceiling, quintessential Bavarian sayings painted above the windows and flags strewn up representing Bavaria, beer houses, Jägermeister and, of course, the Nashville Soccer Club. A stage sits in the middle of the open room where live music is played at least three days a week.

Under the direction of Executive Chef Dennis Stukel, nearly everything on the menu is house-made and as authentic as possible. Perhaps the most distinctive dish on the menu is the Schweinshaxe, a roasted pork knuckle that has been brined for eight days prior to being roasted and served with red cabbage.

The restaurant’s famed Bavarian onion soup presents another hearty meal option, as it is made with three different types of onion and a dark beer. Rounding out the expansive menu are Bavarian pretzels, bier cheese fries, smoked bratwurst served with sauerkraut and potato salad, schnitzel and a signature biergarten hamburger. For those with a sweet tooth, Pretzel Pudding perfectly combines sweet and salty flavors, topping warm pretzel bread pudding with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce.

A proper beer hall wouldn’t be complete without a large selection of brews on tap, and Bavarian Bierhaus certainly has that covered. The restaurant’s lagers all come from popular German breweries like Paulaner, Hofbräu, Hacker-Pschorr and Spaten. To accommodate beer drinkers who prefer their beer on the lighter side, Nashville Brewing Company also developed a golden lager, deemed “Bavarian Bierhaus Helles.”

True beer aficionados are welcome to join the restaurant’s ‘Stein Club’ that meets every Tuesday night – members are treated to individual lockers for their personalized steins.

“While we’re known for our great food and beer, we’re more than that. Bavarian Bierhaus is an experience showcasing what a true beer hall is,” Kehl says. “If you haven’t been to Munich or if you want to relive that visit, we’re the best way to enjoy Bavaria without getting on a flight.”

Bavarian Bierhaus is located at 121 Opry Mills Drive and is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m, on Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Learn more at bierhausnashville.com. Prost, Nashville!