The History of The Bierstube
Minnesota's German Restaurant Since 1962
On December 15, 1962, Lawrence William Yanz opened a bar restaurant at the junction of Highway 55 and 61 in Hastings, MN called The Bierstube (definition: Beer Parlor). The Hastings Bierstube original menu consisted of Reubens, Bratwursts, pop and 3.2 beer on tap with the famous sizzling heart steak (6 oz. sirloin) and delicious garlic toast to soon follow. Larry started with the open grill concept in 1962 and today you can check out four other still unique open grill Bierstubes in Inver Grove Heights, Oakdale, Red Wing and White Bear Lake.
Larry was to carry on his Bierstube tradition at LW’s Bierstube (Lawrence William’s) in Inver Grove Heights, but months before it opened, Larry got sick. Two weeks before LW’s opened, Larry’s friends stole him out of his hospital bed and wheeled him into the Bierstube so he could see what he started before he died. Despite Larry’s death on September 21st, 1983, LW’s still managed to open on October 1, 1983. Larry’s brother Bob and other management kept it going while Larry’s sons, Jim and Mike, were finishing college. On May 1, 1987, Jim, Mike and an original Bierstube employee and friend, Mark Merkling, bought LW’s from Bob and the Larry Yanz estate. Unfortunately, Mark Merkling passed away in 2004 and continues to be missed.
Four years later on October 7, 1991, Jim opened JW’s Bierstube (James William’s) in Oakdale. He opened just in time to pass out Homer Hankies throughout the bar for the Twins/Braves World Series. Five years later on May 15, 1996, Mike opened RW’s Bierstube (Red Wing’s) in Red Wing. Besides having the traditional Bierstube pub atmosphere, Mike’s place also boasts a first class bowling center, separate unique lodge and a stone oven that really sets his pizza apart from the rest. Three years later on June 1, 1999, Jim and former manager in Oakdale (and friend), Jim McArdle, opened up JJ’s Bierstube (Jim and Jim’s) in White Bear Lake, making it the fifth and newest Bierstube. JJ’s along with JW’s and LW’s are located just minutes from downtown St. Paul and Minneapolis.
On June 2, 2002, Hilde Yanz (Larry’s wife), also died of cancer. Upon her death, the original Bierstube was left to sons Jim and Mike. Jim, Mike and Jim along with their families, take pride in owning and operating their family restaurants. They are working hard to thrive as the original, true locally owned neighborhood bar and grill amongst the ever growing, not locally owned corporate chain restaurants. In recent years, they have added delicious, authentic German dishes highlighted by the mouth watering “Taste of Deutschland” sample platter. They have also given away many vacations, including trips to Germany during their annual Oktoberfest celebrations. They also take pride in giving back to their communities, annually amongst the leaders in many various charitable contributions.
With your very appreciated support, Jim, Mike, Jim and their families promise to serve the people of their communities to the very best of their abilities. They are committed to maintaining a fresh, clean, fun atmosphere along with the old tradition of great food, great friendly service, affordable prices and comfortable surroundings for all. We ask, how many other restaurants have a Larry’s Steak Special (founder), Hilde’s German Meatballs (founder’s wife), a Max Burger, a Sammy Steak Sandwich and Maci’s Mini Burgers (Larry & Hilde’s grandkids).