Old Town, Düsseldorf
Bar Engel is one of those dark bars with the nice rock music and there are so many of them in Altsadt. You can sit outisde and have a beer or some cocktail while listening rock music and watching a football game on the TV!
Dress Code: So so unpretentious.
We stopped off here on a balmy night in April. It was nice to sit outside with a few beers and put the world to rights.
We tried the dark, local, Alt Frankenheim beer, but to be honest I wasn't that impressed and so went back to the lighter lager.
The most famous bar is Braurerei Uerige and it’s the oldest one. Situated in the very center of the area, this bar offers the famous Alt beer. Believe me, there were more than hundred people outside everyday drinking beer and chatting.
We come to this kitschy place regularly because they serve the best cocktails here. The "Mai Tai" and the "Suffering Bastard" are my favourites here and I hardly ever came out of this huge bar in the old town sober. Prices aren't cheap but I'd rather pay 8 EUR for a good cocktail than 6 EUR for a bad one.
The only downside here is that the cocktail card here doesn't tell you what the cocktails include. They serve a huge number cocktails (100 or so) but it's not really easy to try new ones because the only thing you know about them is that they are sweet, sour or creamy. The description they use are more like "A Polynesian Dream" than like "Rum, Pineapple Juice, Galliano, ....." unfortunately.
Dress Code: None. Come as you want to.
Uerige may serve food but mostly what they serve besides the best alt beer in town is a good time. This place is packed just about any hour of the day or night. There’s a multitude of rooms if you get bored but my favorite is in the hallway where little barrels are set up as tables. What’s nice about this space is it’s close to the front door so you not only get to see people as they arrive (or stagger out!) but also you get some much needed fresh air to revive you for the next round. Alt beers come in small glasses but it makes for drinking more since the waiters make sure to get you a fresh one once you get close to empty. Be on the lookout for snacks brought around by the waiters too since once they are out of a particular thing you are not likely to see it again.
Dress Code: Despite the city's reputation as the fashion capital of the country, it seems the brewpubs cater to a more casual crowd. ;)
Hard to believe that one town could have so many great old pubs with wood interiors, copper bars, and brass tapped casks but here's another one that serves one of the best Alt biers, Schumacher. Though it's well worth the walk to the true Schumacher brewery tap on Ostrasse, for those with little time or challenged by maps, you can at least sample the excellent Schumacher Alt.
This is a great little jazzbar and possibly the most wellknown in town and it's located in the old city. Above the entrace is an oldfashioned neonlight sign saying "Dr,.Jazz" under which a red carpet leads your way down the stairs to the bar.
Every night you can listen to livemusic, a lot of times consisting of jazz and blues music, but also from time to time rockabilly and rocknroll.
If youre lucky you might see a blond swedish girl perform with a group of old, very cool guys and a saxofonist/clarinettist called John Bull. That would be me:-).
I love this bar, its great and the people working there are always very nice. There is a wide range of whiskey in the bar and if you like cigarrs, it's posible to get one here. The wineshore has more wine than shorle ;-) and the standard beer is ofcourse the "Alt", which is a local specialty.
If youre in D-dorf, go to Dr, Jazz :-)
Dress Code: No
The first of the "Alt" brewpubs Sabsi and Thomas took us to and one of the really famous amongst the pubs in this famous brew city. Alt is a local speciality and I having spent a lot of time in Cologne and knowing that the two cities are rivals, I was quite surprised to find that it is served in just as small glasses as Kölsch, but hey, it tasted good (and beer guru Michael Jackson seems to agree) which was the main thing. Just as in Cologne, the waiters serve loads of tables at the same time with the help of their "tray" and keep track of your drinks with the help of the beer mat.
Dress Code: Anything.
Sabsi's favourite Alt had to be tried and tested and did not disappoint although different altogether from our first session in Uerige. What fascinated me about this place was the size of it. Yet another of those huge German beer halls with a fantastic ambiance whether by the table with the couple in love, or the one with the company birthday party. This place is not to be missed!
Dress Code: Anything.
I'm a big fan of dark beers, and I so was very satisfied with the smooth and rich Altbier of the Altstadt. My friend Dieter took me to two different beerhalls; I'm not sure which one this is, but he told me that there's not a great difference among them, so I don't think you can go wrong.
If I were pressed to give my preference, I'd say that I like the Alt of Düsseldorf more than the Kolsch of Cologne. Not really much of a contest, either.
My favourite night spot in the old town. Most nights Bands are performing music mainly from the 1960s to 1990's. Most guests are aged 25 - 60 years. Suitable for businessmen as well as for backpackers.
Dress Code: no dress code
Dusseldorf has four small scale breweries located within pubs.
They mainly sell 'alt', meaning an old fashioned beer which is 'top-fermented' and is a speciality of the city.
Although relatively low in alcoholic content and served in small thin glasses, it is extremely tasty and slips down a treat.
The large brewpub we used was doing a roaring trade in serving good hearty portions of germanic food. Every meat going, with generous additions of mashed potatoes and cabbage.
I'm not saying this is the finest meal I had in a while, but my one-year-old hadn't eaten more than fresh air in three days due to teething. Within 20 minutes of entering this place he was happily wolfing down the pub's mashed potato like it was going out of fashion.
The opening hours for the doctor of beer and jazz is from Thuesday till Saturday from 8pm. You can see the doctor on days with trade fairs as well. So if you need some drink (unfortunately the doc aint so cheap) and some Jazz or music from the 50s and 60s, Dr. Jazz is the place to be. As in most Jazz places, the people that go there tend to be not in their 20s anymore.
Dress Code: Nothing to special.
Going up and down the Aldstadt at night is an experience unto itself. You'll find the longest row of bars anywhere in the world!!! (or so they say). Stop at any of the bars you can be inside or out during the summer and have a drink. This bar had kegs for sale, as you can see in the picture it can get a little much, hee hee hee....
The Uerige ale house is very famous locally, and they pride themselves on being the oldest public house in all of Düsseldorf. They have their own brewery, along with their own excellent ales. The service is gruff, in keeping with the "rough" tradition of the Altstadt, but not rude, and the ambience is cosy and warm. The beer, especially the dark "alt" beer is particularly good.