Haus Rules

Haus Rules

The Passing of the Boot

The Passing of the Boot - a drinking game centered around a glass boot filled with two litres of your favorite tap bier - remains one of the Hessen Haus' favorite traditions for groups to engage in. These are the "rules" should you choose to follow them:

  • The Boot travels around the table clockwise.
  • Drink without pointing the toe away from you ... and you drink again.
  • Fail to flick the Boot with your finger before passing it ... and you drink again.
  • Splash yourself while drinking from the Boot ... and you drink again.
  • Touch the table with the Boot ... and you buy the next one.
  • Finish the Boot ... and the person who passed it to you buys the next one.

The Snuff Catapult

You won't stumble across this contraption at any other bar. Ask your server for a shot of snuff - a small dose of finely ground tobacco - and prepare yourself to inhale on the count of three, as she (or he) launches via wooden catapult a flavorful punch right up your nose.

The Drinking Song

It's not uncommon for groups enjoying the evening to join our polka band in a spirited rendition of our favorite German drinking song. Prepare yourself by singing along at least once a day, click here to hear the song!

The Pronunciation of "Prost"

The equivalent of making a toast in our country, the Germans declare "Prost" - rolling the "r" and vigorously raising their steins in celebration. Click here to hear it first hand!

Iowa Polka Music Hall of Fame

The Hessen Haus is proud to be home to the Iowa Polka Music Hall of Fame, which features photos of Iowa's most renowned Polka enthusiasts - many of which you'll find in attendance whenever the accordions play. A special tribute honors the Hall of Fame's founder and past President, the late Duane Pickleman, who passed away in 2006.

The Deck

Offering the seclusion of a high wooden fence and a marvelous view of downtown Des Moines, the deck at the Hessen Haus makes for a popular spot whenever the weather allows.

Andechser Doppelbock Dunkel
Featured Drink: Andechser Doppelbock Dunkel