The Bavarian Lodge
The real deal for authentic Oktoberfest meals in Lisle
It’s got schnitzel. It’s got spätzle. It’s got schwarzbier. And it definitely has an Old World spirit.
Welcome to The Bavarian Lodge, a literal and figurative taste of Germany in west suburban Lisle.
The timber-lined restaurant, pub and “beer bar” on Ogden Avenue looks as if it’s been plunked down in the Chicago area from a wooded hillside in Germany. Inside, cozy woodwork on the walls and floor, heavy glass pendant lights and shelves lined with steins suggest a place as authentic as it is welcoming.
Open a menu and you’ll quickly discover a host of German dishes at this family-owned eatery, which first opened in 1986 and draws a crowd all year long, especially during Oktoberfest season. The chef and culinary team butcher meats in-house, make their own sausages and create stocks and sauces from scratch.
Accordingly, patrons can find unique dishes here, in addition to popular and known-in-America items like wiener schnitzel, roast duck, sauerbraten, knackwurst, sauerkraut and dumplings. The Bavarian Rouladen is one example, a traditional beef flank steak rubbed with seasonings and mustard, wrapped around a filling of smoked sausage, bacon, onion, pickle, carrot, celery and hard-boiled egg and baked in a peppercorn gravy. Another specialty is Schwein’s Hax’n, a pork shank cooked in vegetable stock and served with pan gravy, with the option for a crispy skin (go for it).
For those who struggle with picking one entrée, The Bavarian Lodge offers combination meals, including a create-your-own combo, in which guests are served two or three different entrées, a potato and a vegetable. Like the entrées, sides span traditional German favorites, such as dumplings, mashed or boiled potatoes, spätzle egg noodles, German potato salad, Bavarian spinach, braised red cabbage and good old applesauce.
Another way to mix, match and get a taste of different dishes is to start with appetizers, which range from potato pancakes, to a platter of duck wings served with orange horseradish marmalade, to a “wurst platter” — slices of smoked sausages accompanied by ramekins of horseradish sauce and mustard.
Befitting a German restaurant, the bar is stocked with all kinds of German beers, often served in a glass bearing the beer’s name. There are at least 36 drafts on the menu — including signature Trappist ales from Belgium, The Netherlands and Austria — along with 150 bottled beers. Mead, a fermented honey drink with a history dating back centuries, is served in 20th century varieties like bourbon barrel-aged mead, chili pepper mead and pomegranate- nectar mead. The wine list features German classics like Riesling and Splatlese. Those looking for cocktails can choose from single malt scotches, cognacs, cordials, bourbons and draft-distilled spirits.
If you have room, don’t pass up the German staple of apple strudel that is, of course, made in house.
1800 Odgen Ave., Lisle
Bavarian Rouladen, Homemade schnitzel, Spätzle egg noodles
Appetizers: $6 – $12
Entrées: $12 – $25
Wed - Fri: 4 p.m – midnight
Sat: Noon – midnight
Sun: Noon – 10 p.m.
Kitchen closes at 10 p.m. Wed to Sat and at 8 p.m. Sun