The beer at Hofbräuhaus was a real blast from the past for us. Most of you are probably too young to remember the days before microbrewing. Believe it or not, there was once a pretty simple choice for budding beer drinkers: standard American bland lagers or, if you wanted something with flavor, imports, usually from Germany. Those German beers, like Beck’s and Lowenbrau, were good, but when microbrewing became a thing in America, we all left them in the dust for the fresher local beers, brewed in hundreds of different styles.

Hofbräuhaus Pretzels and Bier Cheese — hot, fresh, salty — helps keep the beer flowing.

That was the biggest complaint about the German imports: freshness couldn’t always be counted on. When we traveled to Germany and sampled the freshly brewed draught versions of our old favorites, it was a revelation. The bottles just couldn’t compare. It was that taste — of freshly brewed draught Munich Helles lager, here in Kentucky — that reminded us of how good German beer is.

The outdoor beer garden is a very pleasant place to while away an afternoon. We understand that there’s seating for a thousand (!) inside. Did we read that correctly? Maybe that includes the outdoor seating. In any case, the place is large.

The beer served in Hofbräuhaus Newport is brewed here in Newport, KY. Everything but the water is brought over from Germany, and the claim is that the beer is brewed exactly the same way it’s done in Munich. Our palates tell us to believe the claim.

Grab a stein to enter.

On a sunny summer’s day the outdoor beer garden is the place to be. Hofbräuhaus brews and serves the Original Lager, a Hefe Weizen, and a Dunkel, as well as a monthly seasonal — a Maibock in May, an Oktoberfest in September. Serving sizes go up to a full liter. There’s a full menu of traditional German fare which we have yet to sample.

The parking lot maypole

This Newport, KY Hofbräuhaus — originally intended for across the river in Cincinnati — was the first American franchise of the 1589 Munich original. There are presently six franchises around the country with more on the way. There’s nothing remotely mom-and-pop about these giant chain beer halls. but what can we say? We like the beer, and we like to drink beer outside.

200 East 3rd Street
Newport KY 41071
Hofbräuhaus Newport’s Website
Hofbräuhaus Newport on Facebook