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Obatzda – Bavarian Cheese Spread for the Beergarden!

The word sounds very strange. Obatzda? What is Obatzda and where does it come from? The answer is simple:it is a Bavarian cheese spread which is very popular in the beergardens / Biergärten of Bavaria. Obatzda is typical for a “Brotzeit” dish and is often accompanied by a Brezn / Soft Pretzel. Due to its distinct taste and the calories contained, a beer is the perfect beverage for enjoying Obatzda. Officially Obatzda is spelled “Obatzter” and means “mixed one” or “pressed one”, the usual spelling is typical for the Bavarian dialect. This gives a first impression of how Obatzda is actually made…

A scence of Obatzda Cheese Spread from Bavaria together with a Soft Pretzel, ready to be eaten in a Bavarian Beer Garden.

A bowl of Obatzda nicely garnished. Obatzda is best eaten with a Soft Pretzel, called “Bretzel” or “Brezn” in Germany. You would usually choose a Bavarian beer like a “Helles” or a “Weizenbier” at the Beer Garden / Biergarten. Obatzda is rich in calories and has a unique taste. Why not give it a try yourself?

The history of Obatzda: well, there was some old cheese in the beginning…

In the beginning, Obatzda was a meal in order to make use of old soft cheese leftovers. Back in the old days, cheese was expensive in Germany and that applied to Bavaria, too. In order to make cheese remains eatable again, they were mixed with butter and spices. Mainly paprika, a seasoning powder made from chili peppers, was added as well as caraway seeds (Kümmel). Caraway seeds are often added to rather indigestive foods. Obatzda became very popular in the 1920s, when a Bavarian landlady served this particular cheese spread in Freising, a famous city near Munich. Nowadays, fresh cheese is of course used when making Obatzda. There are currently intentions of adding the cheese spread to the European list of protected geographical indications (PGI). Kolsch / Koelsch and Black Forest Ham are examples of such produces. Nevertheless, you are free to make your own Bavarian cheese spread and eat it as “real Obatzda”!


Obatzda as a perfect cheese dip when served with a German beer from Bavaria!

Obatzda has a rather spicy taste and is of creamy consistence. Usually it is served in combination with a Soft Pretzel called “Brezel” or “Brezn”. Other buns of different forms made from Soft Pretzel dough may also be served. Due to its intense taste, a Bavarian wheat beer / Weizenbier is very suitable. The wooden plate with Obatzda and Pretzel backed goods may be garnished with some small red radishes which builds a pretty picture. But please watch out and do not order too much Obatzda, even if you like it very much, for this cheese spread is rich in calories, so you might later on get an unpleasant feeling of having eaten too much. There are many Obatzda variations, yet the general recipe with its ingredients is always the same. We would like to show you how to make your own Obatzda. It is really simple and you will be rewarded with a genuine taste of Bavaria!

Obatzda Recipe

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