Munich Greeter

What is…? A “Boazn”

When tourists come to Munich they want to try traditional food and of course the beer. So most of them head to the traditional and more or less touristy restaurants that can be found everywhere in the city. But if you only want to have a beer or you’re going out at night you don’t need to go to a traditional restaurant. There are pubs for this and the citizens call this type of pub “Boazn”.

This article is dedicated to J. from australia, who gave me the idea to write about this topic.
The term “Boazn”
The term is bavarian dialect but originally comes from the yiddish/hebrew word “bajis/bajit” (means “house”). Nowadays the term is used to describe small pubs where you can have a beer and other alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks. Sometimes it’s also possible to have a snack there, but in most cases snacks consist of fingerfood, wursts, or similiar things. As mentionned many Boazn (sing. & pl.) are really tiny and 20 people inside make them overcrowded. So it is clear that they don’t have the facilities to prepare food.

Where to find a Boazn?
before we answer this question we need to say that there are different types of Boazn. Good ones and bad ones. You will say the same applies to restaurants, hotels or whatever and you’re right. But when we talk about “Boazn” it depends how the term is used inside a sentence. Boazn can be the well known cosy, friendly pub around the corner, but Boazn can also be used to point out that the pub is really ugly and dirty. So it’s hard for tourists to distinguish a “good” Boazn form a “bad” one. And as a tourist you can’t ask a pedestrian where to find a “good” or “trendy” Boazn, because many citizens know only a few of them and normally they wouldn’t call “their” pub a Boazn unless they are saying it is “their” Boazn. Confusing, isn’t it? 😉
A Boazn is always something between dive bar and favourite pub, depending on the context.


Boazn – typical appearance

But many Boazn have the same appearance a bit rundown, strange names like “Flex”, “Zic-Zac” “Johanniscafé” and others with the bavarian suffix “-stüberl”. If you are in a thirst for adventure just head to the next pub that looks like a drinking hole and have fun. And if you think you are in the wrong place only surrounded by old alcoholics, finish your drink and try another Boazn ;-). But always keep in mind that there might be Boazn owners that don’t understand one english word. So make sure you learned how to order a beer in german… And of course drink responsibly!

Those of you who don’t want to dive into a Boazn adventure here are some suggestions of Boazn where you can go to:

Johanniscafé (website)
Johannisplatz 4, (Tram 15, 19, 25, U4, U5, station “Max-Weber-Platz”).
A legendary Boazn in the district of Haidhausen near Max-Weber-Platz. Funny interior details such as a painting showing the owner dressed like king Ludwig II.
FLEX (website)
Ringseisstraße 11a, (U3, U6, station “Goetheplatz”)
Nice pub in a cellar near Goetheplatz. Hope you like Rock music…
Schwarzer Hahn (website)
Ohlmüllerstraße 8 (Tram 17, station “Eduard-Schmid-Straße”)
Quite dark in there… but heavily frequented by locals.
X-Cess (website)
Sonnenstraße 8 (S-Bahn, U-Bahn, Tram, station “Karlsplatz/Stachus”)
Also a legendary Boazn near the city center. You can say “Captain” Isi (owner) is a local legend…

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