Updated: Mar 8, 2019
The Von Trapp Brewery & Bierhall has a very special place in my heart. My family has had a time share here at the Trapp Family Lodge since 1988, and I return every year (sometimes even three times a year...). Since I've been coming here every year since I was born, Trapp Family Lodge has been more of a home to me than any other place I've ever lived. Now that I'm all grown up, and old enough to head into the bar scene - I was one of the first people counting down the days until the Trapp Bierhall opened its doors.
In 2015, the Bierhall finally opened and me and Chris first visited in Novemeber 2016. Walking into the Beirhall itself was like entering the 'Great Hall' from Harry Potter; tall ceilings, light wooden beams, ornate black chandeliers, and magic pouring out of every tap. We were promptly greeted by a host as soon as we entered, situated right next to a small merchandise store on the left, where you can buy beer, clothing and glassware among other souvenirs. Behind the host was the grand U-shaped bar
adorned with ram horn tap handles (I got all giddy all of a sudden). As we scurried over to the bar, we even noticed that they had wines on tap and an apple with wings as a tap handle: Stowe Cider! My favorite! But I had waited this long for the Beirhall to open so I had to get a beer, andI got their Vienna Lager (my absolute favorite beer.) This amber lager is light enough for a warm day, but it also has flavors perfect for fall or winter days (caramel and maybe some toffee?) Since it was a warm day (65 degrees in mid November - weird), we decided to forgo the bar and head outside to the picnic tables with a FANTASTIC view of Mount Mansfield- super cool!
After we drank our beers, and finished staring at a mountain, we headed back inside to eat and sit at the bar. When Chris sat down, he noticed something that made him extremely happy. Being 6'2" (and mostly legs), his knees usually tend to hit a hard surface when he sits at any bar. Here however, there was a comfy cushion on the underside of the bar! Now it may seem like a tiny detail I'm focusing on- but the sheer amazement on Chris' face, I just had to point out. It shows they thought of everything, to the very last knee-caring detail. Now, I've mentioned their Vienna Lager, which will always be a staple for me, but I must mention the others. If you don't live anywhere near Stowe, VT, you might find Trapp's Golden Helles Lager at your local bar. This is one of Chris' favorite beers to enjoy on a hot summer day. Its light and crisp - probably why its called Helles- meaning 'bright' in German. We always end up filling a growler with it before we head home.
Now all their beers are brewed and taste like traditional Austrian beers, but with an American flare. That's why these beers are so unique from everything we are seeing in American beers nowadays. Now, I like beer, but when I enter a brewery and its six IPAs or double IPAs on tap -I get very annoyed. There's more styles of beer than IPAs! And the Trapp Brewery capitalizes on that, brewing only great lagers, something a lot of American beer company's are missing. They have a beer for every occasion and every person's preference. The Bohemian Pilsner is dry and refreshing, perfect on a hot summer day. The Dunkel is great for when I want something rich and creamy on a cool evening. The Trosten Lager Chris craves in the dead of winter, with rich flavors but a surprisingly light body. One of my new favorites is their Weissbier, meaning "white beer" it's a little bit more fruity than their pilsner or helles, but just as light and drinkable.
Having true Austrian style beers, you gotta have true Austrian style food too, right? And of course, they have the perfect menu to pair with their excellent beers like an amazing grilled bratwurst, a lager cheese soup (I dream about this soup sometimes...), and their famous 'Johannesburger' made with grass fed beef from their own Scottish Highland Cows, that they raise on the property (strangely enough my dad called those cows 'Gnus' since I was a little girl, and corrected me only a couple of years ago....embarrassing....) The most recent time we went, they had a new fried brussel sprouts dish on their menu, with a balsamic reduction and a Von Trapp farm fresh egg- SO GOOD! I never leave the Bierhall disappointed, with either their food or beers. Since before it was even open, I had very high expectations for this Bierhall (somewhat unrealistic at times), but it panned out and easily exceeded all my expectations. "Johannes von Trapp had a dream to brew an American version of the tasty lagers he enjoyed so much during his trips to the countryside near his ancestral home." Johannes' dream came to light and I hope more people will come to and realize how special this great place is.
Illustrations of this brewery is in our SHOP designed by Chris Boudrow.
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