As long as there has been beer on this planet, people have congregated outdoors to drink together and be merry. Indeed, nothing goes better with warm weather than a cold beer.
Although Germans didn’t actually invent beer, it definitely perfected drinking it. In Germany, beer is best enjoyed surrounded by your friends, family, and random strangers at a shared table in a beer hall or biergarten.
A beer garden, as it’s written in English, is an outdoor area, typically filled with shared tables shaded by large trees where beer and food are consumed in a communal setting.
While you will find plenty of beer halls and beer gardens at Oktoberfest in Munich, you don’t have to travel to Germany to enjoy a cold brew in a beer garden. There are a lot of great beer gardens in America that make for the perfect place to celebrate Oktoberfest.
As wonderful as it is to visit Germany, these best beer gardens in the United States will make you feel like you have been transported to the Bavarian capital.
From traditional German biergartens with communal tables and boots of beer to establishments with more of a modern interpretation of the beer garden concept, we have created a list of some of the best beer gardens in America.
What makes a beer garden great?
Beer gardens originated in Munich, Germany.
Naturally, when you think of a beer garden, you probably think of the traditional concept found throughout Bavaria. Shared picnic tables in a shaded area, with waitresses in dirndls serving local beer, pretzels, and sausage.
American beer gardens don’t always have the same characteristics as those in Germany though.
Whether in the United States, Germany or elsewhere, there are a few key components every beer garden must have to be great in our opinion: fresh air, a relaxed atmosphere, and most importantly, great beer!
Ideally, a beer garden should be family friendly for parents like us who often have a kid in tow. It should also be laid out in a way that encourages conversation with others.
Best beer gardens in America
While some of the awesome establishments that made this list of the best beer gardens in America are as authentic as any beer hall or biergarten in Germany, American beer gardens are often different from what you’ll find in Bavaria.
Some great beer gardens in the United States include food trucks. Others are in highly populated urban areas with little room for outdoor seating. However, one thing all of them have in common is an ideal atmosphere to relax and have a drink.
It’s no secret to anyone who reads this blog regularly that we are the type of parents who enjoy a cold beer from time to time – especially when we are traveling. We are big fans of craft breweries, wineries, and of course, a great beer garden!
Our love for a great beer garden is one of the reasons many of our favorite places in the world are in Germany – like Rothenburg ob der Tauber, or Erding, which is home to the Erdinger Brewery and Therme Erding Thermal Spa.
Here is a list of the best beer gardens in the United States to celebrate Oktoberfest – American style.
Lowry Beer Garden – Denver, Colorado
One of the best beer gardens in the United States is Lowry Beer Garden located in Denver, Colorado.
Lowry Beer Garden is known for its exceptional atmosphere, boasting a handful of seating options indoors as well as plenty of outdoor seating that is welcoming to dogs and families. That’s great news for those visiting Denver with toddlers or even older kids!
Their menu is filled with delicious options, ranging from Bavarian pretzels to mouthwatering hot dogs.
What truly sets this beer garden apart is its wide variety of beverages, including countless beers on tap, and they serve an abundance of liquor drinks, too.
Another reason that Lowry’s stands out is due to the abundance of events and celebrations they hold each month ranging from Oktoberfest parties to Trivia Nights, Lowry Beer Garden loves to host events that bring the community together over a few pints of beer!
The Lowry Beer Garden earns its place as one of the best beer gardens in the United States as well as one of the best establishments in Denver, due to its fantastic environment, thoughtfulness, and tasty food and drinks.
Recommended by Abby Price from Trekking Prices
Independence Beer Garden, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
There’s nothing like having a cold craft beer while looking out over Independence National Historical Park, home of the famous Liberty Bell. And there is only one place to do that, Independence Beer Garden in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The 20,000 square foot space is definitely more of an American beer garden than a true German biergarten in the United States. The menu consists of a variety of American favorites like burgers, wings, and barbecue and 40 domestic craft beers on tap.
The beer garden offers communal picnic tables under a shaded pergola surrounded by lush greenery and plants.
Guests can pass the time playing games like corn hole or mingle with others inside the beautiful, picturesque space.
If visiting Pennsylvania with kids, Independence Beer Garden is family friendly!
Hofbrauhaus – Las Vegas, Nevada
If you’re looking for an incredible Oktoberfest experience in the United States look not further than Hofbräuhaus Las Vegas. Located just off the Las Vegas Strip, Hofbräuhaus is an actual replica of the famous beer house in Munich.
Down to the paintings on the wall, the Vegas establishment makes you feel like you’re really in Bavaria.
Las Vegas is known for having tons of amazing international restaurants, and Hofbräuhaus definitely is one of the best. The food is legitimately better than the food at the original Hofbräuhaus in Munich and the beer flows like wine.
There’s always a live polka band playing and the outdoor beer garden in the back of the restaurant is also a great place to watch a Bundesliga match.
It’s probably the most Bavarian experience you can have outside of Europe and it’s hard not to enjoy your time at the Hofbräuhaus, even if you don’t like beer.
For Oktoberfest, the restaurant becomes even more rowdy, with people from all over who couldn’t make it to Munich descending upon the Bavarian restaurant for the annual drinking festival. If you’re in Las Vegas at the end of September, there’s nothing better than a night at the Hofbräuhaus!
Recommended by Chris from Around the World with Me
Navy Pier Beer Garden, Chicago, Illinois
One of the best things to do at the Navy Pier in Chicago is to hang out at the on-site Beer Garden. Officially known as the Tangled Roots Beer Garden, this venue has excellent views of the lake and Chicago skyline, great music and even better cold ones.
The Beer Garden frequently hosts music events and is one of Chicago’s popular summer bars. It is also a great place to watch the annual Air and Water Show held on Lake Michigan.
Open from May through October, the beer garden features a Bavarian themed menu like bratwurst, as well as American-style pub food like burgers and cheese fries.
Their weekday Happy Hour has cheap drinks from 4 to 6 pm while the live music playing in the background ensures you have a relaxing time. It also has free WiFi and plenty of empty tables on weekdays for families to relax.
Their prices are surprisingly reasonable for the premier location.
Recommended by Ketki from Dotted Globe
Black Forest Brooklyn – Brooklyn, New York
Brooklyn, New York is home to a wonderful German beer garden that serves traditional Alsatian cuisine including Black Forest foods like Flammkuchen.
The founders, Tobias and Ayana, both hail from the Black Forest region of Germany, but only met when they moved to Brooklyn. As they proclaim on their website, they decided to open Black Forest Brooklyn as a tribute to their love.
The restaurant, beer hall and beer garden offers Alsatian classics with a New York twist.
Their pumpkin Flammkuchen is a fan favorite, while the spicy kale that comes as a side to their Bratwurst plate is delectable. Oh, and of course the beer is great, too, but that should really go without saying.
Like any good German beer garden, it’s a great, easy-going, fun place to treat yourself any time of day with your friends and family.
If you find yourself in Brooklyn craving a good beer and a good time, check it out! They have two locations one on Futon Street and one on Smith Street.
Recommended by Sarah and Justin from Travel Breathe Repeat
Trillium Garden on the Greenway – Boston, Massachusetts
Trillium Brewing not only has its standard taprooms, the brewery also has a rustic beer garden on the Rose Kennedy Greenway – by far a favorite place among Boston locals to enjoy a beer.
Conveniently located in Downtown Boston, Trillium Garden on the Greenway was Boston’s first beer garden.
The garden has a cozy vibe, and is always filled with young professionals, families, and dogs. With big picnic tables, local food trucks outside, and the choice of Trillium beers and local Westport Rivers Vineyard wines, there is truly something for everyone.
The twinkly lights and amazing beer make this the perfect place to spend a weekday summer night. Although Trillium is known for their hoppy IPAs and American craft pale ales, they also offer wild ales and sours.
Recommended by Meghan from Through My Pint Glass
Royal Bavaria – Moore, Oklahoma
Royal Bavaria, located in the city of Moore, a suburb of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma is about as authentic as a German beer garden in the United States can possibly be. With communal tables underneath large shade trees, boot-shaped beer mugs, and plenty of family-friendly entertainment, this has got to be one of the best beer gardens in America!
What makes this German beer garden even better is the high standard in which the restaurant runs the business.
The German food rivals anything you would find in Munich, and the beer is brewed in house adhering to traditional Reinheitsgebot standard known in English as the German Beer Purity Law. In fact, in a city filled with craft breweries, Royal Bavaria remains one of the best breweries in Oklahoma City.
Royal Bavaria‘s beer garden is definitely a place where you can relax, mingle, and spend hours enjoying great food, drinks, music, and company!
Whether you are looking for a place to celebrate Oktoberfest, wanting to visit a Christmas market similar to those you’ll find in Germany, or simply indulge in some authentic German food and beer brewed on-site, Royal Bavaria offers it all.
Radegast Hall & Biergarten – Brooklyn, New York
Radegast Hall & Biergarten is another little piece of Germany tucked away in Brooklyn. Located in the eccentric Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, it hails the title of “Brooklyn’s First Authentic Biergarten in the New Era”.
If you are a beer lover they have a good amount of beer on tap (about 10 German selections).
They also serve wine, cocktails, brandy and liqueur.
If alcohol isn’t your thing they also serve Clausthaler which is nonalcoholic beer. Every year they have a big celebration during Oktoberfest with a ceremonial keg tapping.
For those looking for entertainment while they drink, Radegast Hall has live music daily. However, on Saturdays from 11pm-2am at Radegast Hall, they have a live DJ playing modern music.
You can even rent the hall for events like exchanging I do’s! It’s nothing but good vibes and energy, which is the Bavarian way!
Recommended Summer Salut from Do You Salut
Bavarian Bierhaus – Milwaukee, WI
Bavarian Bierhaus is an awesome beer garden to experience Oktoberfest and only one of the fun things you can do if you visit Milwaukee.
Bavarian Bierhaus is one of the most well known beer gardens in Milwaukee that operates for six weeks of Oktoberfest at Old Heidelberg Park. Milwaukee has a German heritage, so there are many beer gardens around the city that visitors will want to explore and experience during Oktoberfest, including Milwaukee’s Oldest and Largest Biergarden, Bavarian Bierhaus.
Bavarian Bierhaus is a great beer garden as you can experience German Style Beers, Bavarian Craft Cocktails, and German Specialty Liquor. They pair the beer with some awesome German inspired dishes including Munich Meat and Cheese Platter, Bavarian Onion Soup, Schnitzel, Wurst on a Bun and so many more delicious choices.
Bavarian Bierhaus has been providing great food, great bier, and lively music for over 60 years in Milwaukee. Visitors can enjoy the bierhall as well as a variety of indoor and outdoor spaces.
Recommended by Hannah from Getting Stamped
Petrifying Springs Biergarten – Kenosha, Wisconsin
Although there are many beer gardens and halls in the beer loving state of Wisconsin, but the Petrifying Springs brand itself uses the German term, “biergarten”. That must mean it’s authentic right?!
Petrifying Springs Biergarten, located at Petrifying Springs Park in Kenosha, Wisconsin, is really one of the best places to be in the summertime. This biergarten offers outdoor and indoor (pavilion) seating and is dog friendly and family friendly!
They have 9 different German and local beers and ciders on tap, (and root beer for the kids/non-drinkers!) They also offer several different wines, as well as traditional and lemonade mimosas, a biermosa (using Weiss Bier), and a Radler (Weiss Bier and lemonade).
Of course, you really cannot come to the biergarten without getting a giant Bavarian pretzel WITH obatzda dip. Of course, there are other delicious options such as a traditional bratwurst, currywurst).
Throughout the summer, the biergarten always has tons of events going on and also hosts a large Oktoberfest celebration around the time of the German festival.
From hosting various polka bands, yoga and beer classes, and family friendly activities, you can’t get bored going more than once!
Recommended by Miranda Knudtson
Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden, Astoria, New York
Located in Astoria, Queens, just a short subway ride away from Manhattan, the Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden is the oldest beer garden in New York, and one of the oldest beer halls in the U.S.
It was opened more than 100 years ago in 1910 by Czechs and Slovaks who fled Austria-Hungary oppression.
The beer garden of your dreams, it is packed with more than 100 long picnic tables shaded by umbrellas and populated by enthusiastic beer drinkers. This garden buzzes as patrons choose from a vast selection of beers and from a food menu that offers everything from the traditional – bratwurst and schnitzel – to the updated – veggie burger, gluten-free gazpacho.
Live entertainment is scheduled regularly, and a dance floor encourages expressing yourself.
The garden is popular with singles and families, but no pets are permitted. It is a perfect spot to celebrate Oktoberfest season, but it pulls out all the stops in May for its most popular celebration – the annual Czech and Slovak Festival.
Recommended by Carole Terwilliger Meyers from Berkeley and Beyond
Wolff’s Biergarten – Upstate New York
Wolff’s Biergarten has several locations in upstate New York and boasts the title of second best soccer bar in America. Especially during events like the World Cup, you can find an assortment of people cheering on their favorite teams in their jerseys and drinking primarily German, Czech, and Belgian brews.
As far as food goes, they serve typical German fare such as a variety of wursts along with typical bar munchies, like fried pickles.
Wolff’s tagline is “Soccer. Bier. Peanuts.”, so a word of caution to those who have peanut allergies, this is not the place for you. This will be a favorite bar for avid soccer fans in the area.
The best times to come are during a match, in the summer as there is outdoor seating and they open the garage doors to the open air, or on your birthday, where you can get a free 2-liter boot in celebration!
Recommended by Danielle from Wanderlust While Working
Zeppelin Hall – Jersey City, New Jersey
Who doesn’t love a good biergarten? You don’t even have to be a lover of beer to enjoy the atmosphere of a quality beer garden. There is something to be said about rows of benches and tables, community vibe, oversized mugs of brew, and the occasional schnitzel.
In New Jersey there are endless options to enjoy a beer, but one of the best spots is the biergarten at Zeppelin Hall in Jersey City. This spot in particular has nailed the vibe. It starts with over 100 options of imported and craft beers. You can order a flight to start!
The space is massive inside and out and is covered in 30 ft long tables. Very inviting! The menu does not disappoint with German staples like bratwurst, schnitzel, pretzels, but they do offer a variety of other bar meals to enjoy.
What draws many people here is the outdoor patio and beer garden. Jersey City is a buzzing city, so it’s nice to sit underneath the rows of trees, complete with twinkly lights even though you are only minutes away from the concrete jungle, NYC.
It’s the perfect break from the city with wonderful energy all can enjoy.
Recommended by Cydny from Goal Traveler
Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Café – Sanford, Florida
One of the best beer gardens to celebrate Oktoberfest right in the heart of Central Florida is at Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Café.
Located in the historic district of downtown Sanford, Hollerbach’s is a renowned authentic German restaurant. Well-known for serving delicious and traditional German cuisine such as bratwurst, several kinds of schnitzel, spaetzle, and potato dumplings, the menu proudly displays page after page of delectable dishes.
And for the highlight of Oktoberfest: the beer! With several German beers on tap, guests can order anything from a pint to a 3-liter glass boot meant for sharing.
The 600-seat restaurant encompasses a long wooden bar room, rooftop seating, and décor that makes guests feel like they have stepped into a Bavarian beer hall. On a regular evening, live German music permeates the dining hall and creates a lively atmosphere.
But during Oktoberfest, Hollerbach’s takes over the whole downtown. One of the biggest events of the year, this three-day festival celebrates all things German: food, beer, music, dance, folk costumes, and of course -fun!
If you want to feel like you are celebrating Oktoberfest in Germany without leaving the US, head to Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Café.
Recommended by Erin from The Simple Salty Life
The Schnitzelbank Outdoor Biergarten – Frankenmuth, Michigan
If you are looking for an authentic German Biergarten in Frankenmuth, Michigan then head over to the Bavarian Inn Lodge and their Schnitzelbank Outdoor BierGarten. This hidden gem will definitely check all the right boxes.
Did you know that Frankenmuth, Michigan is actually home to the only officially-sanctioned Oktoberfest celebration? This makes it the only city outside of Munich to receive such an honor. As a result, you just know that this town knows how to do BierGartens!
The Schnitzelbank Outdoor Bier Garten operates during the summer months only. It is both family- and pet-friendly, making it the ideal destination for a fun day out.
From the rustic wooden picnic tables to the traditional Bavarian music, you will feel like you have been transported to the heart of Germany. And if you are looking for live entertainment, then head inside to the Lorelei Lounge for daily performances.
In terms of beer, The Schnitzelbank doesn’t disappoint. With a pretty good selection of imported German beer, as well as their local brews, you are sure to find a favorite.
And don’t forget to try their pretzels or cheese dumplings – they were absolutely delicious!
Recommended by Marianne from Pasta Pretzels & Passports
Wirtshaus German Restaurant and Beer Garden – Los Angeles, California
As a resident of Los Angeles, it is difficult to find a few German restaurants and Beer Halls that serve authentic cuisine and drinks. That’s why Wirsthaus is such a hidden gem as they strive to be as authentic as possible.
You will find this the perfect location to pick for Oktoberfest, with live German music, staff in traditional clothing, and plenty of fun times.
They also do a similar monthly Bavarian night every first Saturday with some of the same treats you would expect from Oktoberfest.
What makes it great is that it checks off all the boxes. It is family-friendly with kid-friendly entrees, pets are welcome so you can bring your dog with you to relax on the outdoor patio, and they offer almost 3 dozen German beer options along with a mix of Austrian and German wines.
The food is delectable with different choices on the kind of sausages you want to have along with traditional sides and desserts. If you choose to spend your Oktoberfest here in Los Angeles, this place comes highly recommended and you will probably want to make it your choice spot moving forward.
Recommended by Nick from The World Overload
Brewbonnet Biergarten – Wildseed Farms – Fredricksburg, Texas
While the BrewBonnet Biergarten may not be one of the most traditional German beer gardens in the United States, its location definitely makes it worth visiting!
BrewBonnet Biergarten is located inside Wildseed Farms, a wildflower farm just outside of Fredericksburg, Texas. Not only is the small German settlement town home to some awesome kid-friendly wineries, you’ll also find plenty of restaurants serving German food, and unique places to celebrate German festivities, like Oktoberfest.
But this beer garden is best experienced in spring – when Wildseed Farms is blooming with wildflowers worthy of any Texas bucket list. You will find field upon field of brilliant bluebonnets and other Texas wildflowers blooming every spring on the property.
The BrewBonnet Biergarten gives visitors to Wildseed Farms a place to sit down, relax, and enjoy a beer or even a glass of wine with a great view.
They also have light snacks and ice cream for those wanting something other than just alcohol and a gift shop where you can buy unique Texas souvenirs.
Biergarten – Santa Barbara, California
Located in sunny Santa Barbara, Biergarten is one of the best breweries in the area year-round but is an especially great beer garden for celebrating Oktoberfest.
Not only are the beers (and additional drinks) excellent, but their food menu reflects a scrumptious German theme, as well.
Enjoy a refreshing pint of German-style beers with everything from a Munich Dunkel-style lager to a German-style pilsner. Go big and order your beer in one of their huge 1L boots!
To compliment your beer, munch on their selection of German food items such as cheese curdles, giant Bavarian pretzels, schnitzel, or bratwurst and sausages.
This is one of the newer breweries in the popular “Funk Zone”. The Biergarten has recently also started hosting an annual Oktoberfest event featuring a specially curated menu, outdoor games, a live band, and a few special surprises.
SB Biergarten has an excellent indoor-to-outdoor space that is kid and dog-friendly. Just a short walk up from the beach, it has a characteristically California laid-back vibe to it that makes it an excellent spot whether you live in Santa Barbara or are just visiting to enjoy a beer in the sunshine.
Recommended by Janelle Axton from Make the Trip Matter
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Have you visited any of these beer gardens in the United States? What is your favorite beer garden in the US – or elsewhere in the world? Leave your comments below!
This guide to the best beer gardens in America and best beer halls in the United States was first written in August 2018 but was most recently updated in September 2023 for current information.