Bar Buddies: Hofbräuhaus
You may have noticed that your trusty Bar Buddy, Jade Crockem, didn't write this week! But, don't be fooled, she didn't stop going to bars. This week, Jade and I took a group of friends to a trusted favorite — Hofbräuhaus Pittsburgh. Hofbräuhaus is a German brewery and restaurant, and, on one glorious night (Thursday) from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m., it's College Night.
The location: Located in Southside Works, Hofbräuhaus is a great location for a group that wants the fun and excitement of spending a night out at the bar, without the hectic environment that ensues among the hustle and bustle of East Carson. It's also a nice change from Shadyside, Squirrel Hill, and Oakland, so you get to see some new faces for a change. You can catch a 61 or 54 bus, but it'll take you about 30 minutes. But I can confirm that an Uber was less than $10, which is a nice price to pay for a change of scenery.
The drinks: Though you can order any classic cocktail at the bar, Hofbräuhaus is, after all, a German brewery. They specialize in beer — really good beer — and I'd have to recommend it. As an added bonus on College Nights, a one-liter stein will only cost you $6, and the in-house beers are a nice switch from your Buds and Millers. And for those of you who may not want to commit to a liter of beer you'd never tried (can't relate), half-liter steins are only $3!
The vibe: The vibe is really unlike any other bar in Pittsburgh. You get the unique and personal feel of a brewery; your group can grab a table for the night and comfortably hang out with your friends while your server brings you drinks, as opposed to your run-of-the-mill bar where everyone crowds the bartender flailing their $20s, and you unfortunately get stuck behind that one really tall guy who orders 10 drinks at a time (you know who you are). The music is also great. They play a successful mix of popular dance favorites and group classics that everyone knows all the words to, with a few German drinking songs mixed in. Admittedly, the place gets packed around 10 p.m., but you never feel cramped like you would at a club. Let's get to the real reason why college students flock to Hofbräuhaus on a Thursday night: they encourage you to stand on the tables! Steins in hand, everyone climbs up onto their seats, singing and dancing with their friends. Just try not to be that guy and be the one who trips off the table.
Lit or nah: Hofbräuhaus gets a 100 percent on the Lit test. The music is great, the beer is great (and cheap!), and the location is a nice a change. On top of that, you truly get an experience that you don't have anywhere else in Pittsburgh. That being said, if you're just going out for a few yummy cocktails with your friends and aren't anticipating anything too crazy, this might be a pass. Like I said before, you're encouraged to climb onto your table and get a little rowdy, and that's not always for everyone. But, if you're looking for a unique place with the advantages of small brewery coupled with all of the added excitement of a bar or club, Hofbräuhaus Pittsburgh's College Night is the place for you.