The long history of the Hofbräukeller started in the 18th century as the breweries of Munich began to look for places to expand their production.
The royal Hofbräu brewery looked at the hills near the river Isar in Haidhausen. There they found ideal conditions for storing beer in the underground cellars of the Gasteig hill. They could store them in cool condition during the summer there, as artificial cooling was only invented later. They planted chestnut trees to make beer drinking enjoyable during the hot time of the year. This started the famous beer garden culture of Munich.
And indeed, today the Hofbräukeller also has a big beer garden. But now I am enjoying a great Bavarian veal Schnitzel in the Hofbräukeller with a Helles beer. A "Helles" is a traditional German pale lager beer with bottom-fermenting yeast.
In this Haidhausen institution there are many local people and you can get typical Bavarian food. Definitely worth trying!
Beergarden Webcam: http://www.hofbraeukeller.de/der-hofbraeukeller/webcam2.html