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May 21, 2010 08:54 PM

Okay, what is it about Haus Murphy's?

We have tried it a couple times and found it amazingly mediocre, bland-ish food that seems like Midwestern fried meats and overcooked vegetables. The house wine seems to come from a box. Every time I look on this board I see someone recommending it, so what are we missing? Do you have to love beer to like this place? Is there something delicious that we have neglected to order?

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  1. Maybe b/c it was on Diner's, Drive-Ins, and Dives? And it's one of the very few German restaurants (good or bad) in the Valley?

    1. I love their red cabbage, and all kinds of sausages (with mustard). To me the cabbage is cooked down to a velvety texture, not "overcooked," but if you really like your cabbage crispy it's definitely not for you! Thought the potatoes were pretty good, too. I've never tried anything fried there, or any wine.

      1. From the way it sounds, I think you might simply not be a fan of German food. The resemblance of German entrées to Midwestern fare is no coincidence. A significant portion of the Midwest was settled by Germans. The vegetables... it's not just a German thing, it's a northern Europe thing.

        1. Now I'm picturing people going there and coming away with, "I ordered schnitzel and they had the nerve to serve me fried meat --!" or 'I ordered wurst and all I got was a plate of sausages. Those jerks, German food sucks." Hee. Well, schnitzel is fried meat, if that's not your bag (and it's not really mine, either, certain CFS joints notwithstanding) then you might try looking past that portion of the menu.

          I'll tell you what I do at Haus Murphy's; it is one of those places where I don't really crack the menu. I ask for the specials, and they usually have one that is a piece of bony shank or knuckley kind of meat that has perhaps been cured but has surely been braised all day. Then I order that thing, whatever they call it. It is tender and flavorful and enough for two people, but I take it home and it's even better the next day. It is served with their German potatoes, which I adore, and their wirsing, which is cabbage, not at all overcooked, seasoned with caraway and butter. I adore that stuff, too. If they don't have a cut of braised meat on the menu, I'll go for the wurst sampler. Good sausage with good spicy mustard and good beer is a thing of joy. I enjoy that with a pint of whatever and I ogle their cute waiters. I am a wine drinker normally, and they do have some good German selections, but beer tends to travel better than wine so I know there's less chance of disappointment if I stick with what's on tap.

          I am not always up for that kind of meat and potatoes dinner, but when I am, I never say no to Haus Murphy's. I have taken a lot of visitors there and never had any complaints. I did marry a midwesterner, though, so maybe that's why they've praised it. The German pilots out in Goodyear (Lufthansa does all of their training there) recommend it, so I figure if it's fine for actual Germans ... miles better than, say, Hofbrauhaus or something like that.

          1 Reply
          1. re: themis

            The bony-knuckly shank stew does sound good, so if we do go back I'll look for that.

          2. Been a while, but we always had good meals. The wine list is quite poor, though we love GR Rieslings. Not the best GR food by a long shot, but still good.

            Sorry that you had a poor meal. Maybe "fame" got the best of them?