A guy walks by casually rocking a pair of ray bans, a loosely fitted white shirt and lederhosen. Yep, Munich’s definitely bringing sexy back.
This is a place where even the simple things are stylish and intelligent. Art and efficiency seem to naturally operate in parallel. I mean, when every taxi in the city is a Mercedes and the streets are widely set like grand boulevards, it’s time to ditch the walking and start strutting.
As I travelled into the city, the buses and trains were modern in their design and visually displayed forthcoming stops. So guess who didn’t get lost! And when I got a bit peckish, I strolled into a food hall called, Schrannenhalle where quality ingredients are sourced from all over Europe so the stalls deliver fun and inventive meals. I wish I had time to sit in its indoor al fresco dining area. Another feast for the senses is Dallmayr, but it’s more market, less restaurant. After spending time in these markets, Munich’s traditional open-air market – Viktualienmarkt – was slightly less impressive. However, I liked watching the locals pick from an endless array of braided breads.
Going to the Mall
I love architecture and was travelling with a friend that recently received a hefty bonus at work, so we both had reason to visit the beautifully designed Fünf Höfe shopping mall. From the outside, it didn’t look like anything special, but the beauty of this building lies within it’s walls. The vaulted ceilings, sleek sliding shop doors and art installations throughout made every retailer look better.
Afterwards we saw a modern Synagogue. One so cool that it didn’t even have visible doors! Instead you enter by walking down steps that take you underneath and then inside the structure. This totally makes me want to convert!
Hanging with the A-listers
Now most of my meals in Munich were good, but one was exceptional.
We walked into Brenner and were immediately met by a host that led us through a sophisticated and bustling cocktail bar. Before guiding us into the dining room, he asks if we’d like a drink, but we proceed to the table. The dining room has high concrete ceilings and is dimly lit, but brighter than the bar. The waiter immediately greets us and introduces himself. He’s not some pimple faced kid trying to work his way through school. He’s a man and he’s a waiter. This is what he does and he does it well. The creative Italian menu celebrated seasonal blood oranges by adding them into a selection of special dishes so I order the linguine with swordfish and blood oranges. The salty capers, sweet oranges and flaky swordfish came together in a garlic and white wine sauce. It was divine. I followed with a blueberry and pistachio torte.
The rustic, yet minimalistic interior décor was special, but not so fancy that you felt uncomfortable. And the service impeccable.
Perhaps not the best food I’ve ever had, the most expensive or even the most impressive environment, but it ranks very high as an overall dining experience.
Munich is steeped in history and has a style that is plainly visible. Museums and galleries are all one euro on Sundays, inventive and quality fare is easily found and bars offer sophistication, without being pretentious.
Munich is cool because it’s not contrived.
We’re all aware of it’s dark history, but this effortlessly smart and glamorous vibe was news to me.