Every day is Oktoberfest at Bierengel in Cordenons, Italy
August 26, 2015
Pizzerias, osterias and trattorias are prevalent in Italy and dot the towns and cities throughout the northern part of the country.
But what happens when they’re closed?
Unless you’ve gotten used to this country’s customs and traditions, you might easily forget that Italians take off most of August, if not the entire month.
Sadly, all the establishments you usually frequent are typically closed. That’s when a German restaurant called Bierengel comes to the rescue. It’s no coincidence that the restaurant’s name means “beer angel” in German.
You don’t have to wait until August to discover what this schnitzel-laden restaurant has to offer. I stumbled upon it after discovering that several of my regular spots had temporarily shuttered their doors.
Bierengel is situated near the center of Cordenons. Owned and operated by Italians, this Bavarian restaurant and birreria keeps its doors open almost every day of the year, except Christmas and Mondays.
The outer walls are painted with bright images of female angels wearing brown habits, garb commonly associated with beer-brewing monks.
There is seating on a vine-covered patio and tables built on top of kegs surrounding an outdoor bar.
Inside, steins fill shelves and hang from the ceiling.
You’ll see the obligatory Lederhosen — but not on any of the male staff. Instead it hangs on a wall in the center of the restaurant. The waitresses wear dirndls, a common sight in Bavaria, especially during Oktoberfest.
Alas, not everyone can make it to Munich to enjoy the beer, pretzels and celebration, but Bierengel solves that problem. The restaurant’s motto is that every day spent there is Oktoberfest.
While Bierengel has plenty of beer, that’s not the only thing on the menu. Dishes include wurstel, chicken, ribs and, of course, spaetzle, a German pasta dish. You can choose portions appropriate for an individual or for groups of up to five people.
I chose to taste a bit of everything by ordering a mixed plate for two, which included half a chicken, spare ribs and mixed sausages. The tasty, well-seasoned meat was accompanied by carrots, French fries and cheesy, roasted potatoes.
Don’t let the restaurant’s comfort food scare you away if you like a little more green out of the garden. Salads and other vegetarian dishes are offered, as well as child-size meals.
Everything on the dessert list sounded delightful, from an apple strudel to a Linzertorte, both with a vanilla sauce and ice cream. A cake-tasting plate for two was available, but I couldn’t stomach eating for more than one person after the platter I consumed. I settled for a Bavarian chocolate cake, which resembled chocolate mousse. It was drizzled with fudge and topped with whipped cream.
The food was plenty and the beer cold. Throw in the restaurant’s atmosphere and you have a refreshing change and a full belly.