Much Anticipated Biergarten Haus Opens Today!

One of the most anticipated new bars has opened its doors today at 1355 H Street, NE. We looked at some preview photos here back in May. It’s going to be a bit smashed this weekend – from an email:

“Just to let everyone know, we are booked solid for the USA game on Saturday & the Germany Game on Sunday from 1 to 4pm. If you come in for early games, we will kindly ask you to move to the bar at approx 1PM for the reservations coming in. After the games are over, we will be welcoming anyone who would like to come hang out with us. After this weekend we will come up with some set policies for reservations.”

If anyone goes this weekend – send some photos and let us know if it is as good as it looks!

58 Comment

  • Wow, reservations at a beer hall. That’s just wrong.

  • Those making reservations for a party of 6 are likely going to consume a lot more beer than three couples sharing one table.


    • The way a beer garden is supposed to work is, the tables are communal. You sit at a bench next to people you may or may not be with, and by the time you’ve had your fill of beer, you’re all good friends. That’s the beauty of it. Hold the tables with reservations and all you’ve got is a restaurant with a beer garden-like decor.

      • So you’re saying if a group of 10 people go they have to sit with other people instead of enjoying their own company? Makes no sense. Just because it’s a German bar, doesn’t mean this is Germany.

        Take your socialist ideas and move to Europe.

        Go USA!

        • Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying. I’m saying that’s what a beer garden is. If they just want to be Cafe Berlin II, that’s cool I guess. But I think a lot of the excitement and anticipation about this place was due to the belief that an honest to goodness beer garden was coming to DC. I don’t think “just another bar/restaurant” was what most people were expecting.

          • I’m with mappo. It’s really nice to walk up to a place and be able to settle into whatever table is available. Good beer gardens manage to accomodate if necessary to ensure everyone gets to sit with their friends. It’s not like you’re gonna show up and everyone is forced to sit at a different table with a bunch of strangers.

            I understand that this is the world cup, so it might be different. But if they decide to take reservations for all tables during a normal weekend – during the day – that would be a real shame.

        • ever been to wonderland? did you have to sit with a stranger? was it scary?

        • I’m so flippin’ sick of this Go USA/Love it or get out bullsh-t. Goes for everybody who wants people who complain about DC’s foibles to move out to Woodbridge or something.

          If you’re going to call yourself a beer garden, then yes, it should be like being in Germany (ie, no GD reservations). What a F-ing crock of sh-t! Can you tell I’m ticked off?

          This is just like a DC joint to take the fun and spontaneity out of a bunch of folks coming out to enjoy some beer and chatting in the dappled shade. What’s next? Pabst for $8 and the velvet rope/disco ball scene on weekends?

          I just got back from Germany and except for the way it looks, this couldn’t be further from that.

          • And for god sakes I only want to order in German in my faux German Beer Garden in the US!

            Give it 3 months and you’ll have no trouble getting a table. I’m sure it’s just temporary.

      • That’s funny, you think Germans become friends because they sit at a table together! Ha, you’ve obviously never been to a real beergarden in Germany (as opposed to the ones tourists visit)! It is a rare occasion that they become friends so easily. In all my years living there I’ve never seen that happen, even at the beergardens in Munich!

        • best part about beer gardens in germany are the one or two germans per garden blacked out with their faces on the table.

          well, that and schweinshaxe.

        • Maybe not Germans or DCers, but it happens all the time at the Octoberfest in New Orleans. Sure, maybe we don’t end up standing in each others’ weddings, but former strangers sure have a free-flowing blast together while they’re there! And NO RESERVATIONS REQUIRED!!!

  • Reservations for a bar…how pretentious!

    • Really? I think it’s pretty smart – considering the place is going to be frickin’ packed for a month+. At least they’re being straight up – and I know not to try and show up there without booking.

  • I generally wait until hype dies down at new places before I go there. I’ll deal with not being able to see the World Cup at an upscale beer garden.

    I’m assuming the beers are $9 or 10 bucks a piece, anyways…

    • For a litre of really good German beer? I’ll be happy to pay that.

      • I was talking about the size they come in everywhere else in this country(e.g., something around 500 ml.16oz/a pint)

        – Do beers come in liters there?

        per litre, that would indeed be a great price. A place like this would charge $15 a liter

        I don’t expect anything cheap at trendy DC bars

        • Why does everything have to be ‘DC this… trendy that’ – or ‘fratty’?

          It’s just a bar on H St with a great concept that people are looking forward to. They know from tons of feedback that they’ll be packed for World Cup games, so they took reservations for ONE game – three hours. Jesus, everyone needs to drink their beer and STFU.

          By the way, if you think things are trendy and expensive here, God forbid you visit NY, LA, Miami, London, Paris, Barcelona, Berlin, Tokyo, Hong Kong or Sydney.

          • hahahahaha. what are you, a regular guy or something?

          • Read it again, Kev. They’re not talking about one time, they’re talking all the time.

          • I lived in London for years and paid what it cost for beers..though I generally picked the less trendy ones there as well.

            This is a borderline neighborhood in NE DC ..
            and it has reservation only policy! As far as I can see, the announcement seems to imply that the reservation thing will go beyond this weekend, but perhaps I misread it.
            Please, lighten up, it’s funny more than anything else.

            Don’t worry, I’m not that put off by it- it’s a bar, I’ll judge it by the overall atmosphere, beer, and prices.

            I’m not really that against this place- will just wait for World Cup to end to check it out…though the presence of arrogant Hill staffers might keep me away! 😉

  • Great marketing move on your opening weekend….alienate your customers by telling them that a bar is “reservation only”, especially in the H Street part of town! Only in DC people…only in DC.

  • Are they going to have TVs outside, otherwise…this makes no sense

  • I hope they have good American beer like Bud Light. Freedom.

  • I don’t think they care whether a few blog readers are alienated or not. From what I can tell my Cap Hill friends are salivating to get in this place and there will be no shortage of crowds from day one, at least until the weather gets cold.
    Maybe one of us can get a few German flags, buy a few extra picnic tables, get out the extension cord and have a World Cup beer garden of our own.

  • The area that’s reserved is the outside table area only. Patrons can still pack into the bar area (and I’m sure they will).

    I do think it’s a little silly/annoying that it’s all reserved for this weekend, but on the other hand, I understand that they want it to be enjoyable for people who are there to watch the game and that too many people being packed into the outside area (where, yes, there are tvs) could make it impossible for some people to even see the game.

    Admittedly I haven’t been there yet, but what about the fact that the tables are reserved makes you all think there won’t be communal seating?

    Eh, all in all, I think this is a minor annoyance and not really a big deal. Most of the complaints I’ve heard have been from people who wanted to watch the game there and now can’t, so they just want to whine.

    • I don’t give a crap about soccer (or football, if you prefer). I’m not whining about that, for sure.

      My gripe is about the umbrella-pole-up-the-butt attitude in DC, that’s all.

    • the area that’s reserved – the outside table area – is the beer garden.

      again silly silly. way to alienate future patrons.

      • doesnt alienate me. i can wait for the hype to die down.
        better to take reservations and let people know that ahead of time that to have a stupid line outside the door. just go somewhere else this weekend. its not like this is your regular place or something.

        • The quoted email isn’t just talking about reservations this weekend. It sounds like an all the time thing.

          • I’ve seen other quotes from the owners (in several places) that indicate that reservations will not be an “all the time thing.”

      • Yes, I’m aware, but this post is about Biergarten Haus as a whole, not solely about the beer garden.

        I would feel much more alienated if I went and tried to watch the game, but it was ridiculously crowded than I do now.

    • People are whining, but I don’t think the whining is unfounded.

      The whole notion of a biergarten is it’s lack of formality and pretension. Maybe it’s not like this in Germany any more, it’s supposed to be a place where friends can sit back, not worry about what time it is and perhaps make new friends while getting bombed.

      Reservations cut against what the biergarten is all about: things are scheduled, tables must be set and ready for new reservations coming an hour from now. I’ll ask everyone here – would you be perturbed if one of the Bier Mädchens came over and told you “Like, I’m so sorry but your Bierfest is OVER. Thannnks”

      If the place gets full, it gets full. Wait to get in, but don’t time my bier drinkin! Nein!!

      • +ditto

      • For Oktoberfest to get into the best tents you have to get tickets (i.e. reservations), which sell out well in advance (essentially just after they begin selling, you should really try to get them the October the year before). So, for big things they also have to reserve. Not a big deal, just call up and reserve for the game you’re interested in, now that you know reservation may be necessary.

        As for DC being pretentious, please. Just because things don’t go your way does not make everything evil. Relax.

      • Except of course, the fact that the reservations were only for during the games. They took one set of reservations, so no need to rush. Everyone could kick back and relax.

  • people sure do have a lot to complain about, huh?

  • Was at game 2 – Biergarten and atmosphere was fabulous. Let’s keep the U street and VA ‘hipsters’ out and keep the (already full) garden friendly to the locals. ;>

    Congrats – the owners did a great job and this is a fantastic addition to the neighborhood’s already stellar lineup. And, multiple world class beers at $7 per .5 liters.

  • Note ‘hipsters’ was in quotes. Perhaps including the term wanna-be’s would have been clearing.

    • are wanna-be’s worse than real hipsters? i’m not sure I can tell the difference. mostly i just want people to take their sunglasses off at night.

  • was the crowd fratty at all? my greatest fear for any potentially great bar is that it turns into a frat party.

    • Good – kids, strollers, ‘guys in shades’, 20 somethings trying to impress ‘guys in shades’. Quite a hill / NE hill melting pot. Less pretentious than 8th street is becoming (thankfully).

  • It’s a brand new beer garden opening the week of the world cup. I’m sure it has less to do with pretension than crowd control.

    And if you’re complaining about pretension, you probably already have a healthy dose of it yourself.

    If you don’t like their policies, there are tons of other bars around, including wonderland.

    • Exactly! I get the impression that people feel entitled to a restaurant that is what they want. If you want a restaurant to run a specific way, go ahead and put the time and money into opening it!

  • While I’m now going to have to change my plans for Sunday (and find a friend with ESPN if I can’t find a bar) for the Germany/Australia game, I think it’s completely reasonable that this place is reservation-only for the World Cup games. The game lasts a discrete amount of time and a ton of people are going to want to be there between 12PM and 4PM for solely that purpose (well, and the beer).

    Beer gardens in general are more casual than a sit-down restaurant, and I don’t think that reservations are going to work out in the long run, even if the management wishes it were so. You go to a beer garden because you want to wile away the afternoon with warm weather, good beer and the occasional brat – you could be there an hour or 4, and nobody is going to appreciate it if a waiter forces them out to turn the table over. I bet reservations won’t last beyond July.

    Now if only I could be back in Germany, where I could get a table for a world cup game, and a 3 Euro pint…

  • i don’t see what the big deal is, during oktoberfest tables can be reserved in germany as well, between this and the portajohns for men this may be a bit too authentic for some.

  • I went Friday and Saturday and had a great time. I don’t know why people are freaking out. You could still get tables outside if you got there early or at least hang out at the upstairs bar. Great beer list, friendly staff, good food, cool atmosphere. What more can you ask for? The crowd for the U.S. game was great and I plan to go back pretty frequently this summer.

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