Bierstube Coming To Old City

The Germans are coming!

And they’ll be bringing a meaty addition to the food scene in this town that’s already getting fat like good pork with Bierstube, set to open at 206 Market Street. When? We’re not exactly sure. But if their recent Craigslist call-for-staff is any indication, it won’t be long before there’s more schnitzel, bratwurst and some Weihenstephaner in town.

I guess Stephen Starr’s Frankford Hall and South Street’s German beer hall Brauhaus Schmitz (not to mention Garces’ upcoming Frohman’s Wursthaus) were on to something. Now they’ll have competition.

The story of Bierstube dates back to the years of the German Imperial Navy, when chef M. Gerard left his family’s Alsace-Lorraine restaurant to join said Navy in 1888. Following the crowning of Kaiser Wilhelm II, the population was full of visions of glorious adventure, and the young naval chef (and head brewer) was not immune. He served primarily in and around Kiel until 1897 when his ship was sent to Tsingtau, China. For the next dozen years he cooked for numerous crews, adopting new  cuisines and melding them with the German foods and beers he knew so well. Gerard would later marry the daughter of a Chinese politician and open a restaurant in Tsingtau that served both German and Chinese diners. The restaurant was badly damaged during the Siege of Tsingtau during WW 1 and Gerard was imprisoned in 1914, but later released. He and his wife rebuilt the restaurant, continued serving for decades, and Bierstube has since spread to cities around the globe–including Philadelphia.

Whoah, there’s a whole pre-Archduke-Ferdinand-gets-axed history lesson behind the place. But what’s important here is that the menu features traditional German recipes mixed up with a little bit of the Asian influences Gerard absorbed during his journeys. There’s duck breast pan seared in Kasteel cherry sauce, vegetarian Hungarian goulash and a Weisswein-Senf Sosse cod filet in white wine-mustard sauce. What’s more, the place boasts an almost aristocratic beer list.

Yum, the Germans are coming.

Bierstube [Official website]

Bierstube Beer Menu [Beer Menus]