It’s all about the beer in the next two months - some even started it in the summer - and lots of it. Below are a few Oktoberfest events hosted by US-based beer lovers. There are some still going on till the beginning of November:
Oktoberfest Huntington Beach 2009 Sep 6 - Nov 1, 2009
Old World Village
Huntington Beach, CA
Oktoberfest at Alpine Village 2009
Sep 12th - Oct 25th, 2009
Alpine Village - Torrance Blvd.
Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest 2009 Sep 19 - Oct 31
Convention Center at Big Bear Lake
Big Bear Lake, CA
Tulsa Oktoberfest 2009
Oct 20 - 25 (Thursday-Sunday)
River West Festival Park
And now watch how Munich does it:
Oktoberfest is a sixteen-day festival held each year in Munich, Germany during late September (and running to early October). It is one of the most famous events in Germany and the world's largest fair, with some six million people attending every year, and is an important part of Bavarian culture. Other cities across the world also hold Oktoberfest celebrations, modeled after the Munich event.
The Munich Oktoberfest, traditionally, takes place during the sixteen days up to and including the first Sunday in October. The original "Oktoberfest" occurred in Munich, on October 18, 1810: For the commemoration of their marriage, Crown Prince Ludwig (later King Ludwig I) and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen (namesake of the Theresienwiese festival grounds) organized a great horse race (the marriage took place on October 12; the horse race on October 17 — therefore, there are different dates named as being the first Oktoberfest).
The most traditional food served at the Octoberfest is Hendl (chicken), Schweinsbraten (roast pork), Haxn (knuckle of pork), Steckerlfisch (grilled fish on a stick), Würstel (sausages) along with Brez'n (Pretzel), Knödeln (potato or bread dumplings), Käsespätzle (cheese noodles), Reiberdatschi (potato pancakes), Sauerkraut or Rotkraut (red cabbage) along with such Bavarian delicacies as Obatzda (a fatty, spiced cheese-butter concoction) and Weisswurst (a white sausage). And when you drink so much, you need some real hearty food to go with it, or at least to keep you a bit on a sober side.
It’s a true fest for world beer appreciators.
Why in Munich?
Munich has a long and robust history with beer. Before Munich was even a full-fledged city, clever monks were brewing especially stout beers to help them through periods of long fasting. In 1516, Duke Wilhelm IV of Bavaria passed the Purity Law that decreed beer could only be brewed from grain, hops, yeast, and water. The good Duke thus preserved the special flavor of German beer that brings in the beer-thirsty pilgrims every year.
And who ever tried to last all through Munich’s Octoberfest said that after that American beer tastes like water. I guess, unless one truly experiences the beer fest, we wouldn’t be able to make such a statement.
About Oktoberfest beers: make your selection
Helles – this is the standard beer served in a liter stein which brawny beer maids grasp five to six in each hand.
Dunkels – an old-fashioned dark beer served in liter steins as the Helles. Its brewed with toasted malt and has a rich robust taste.
Pils/Pilsner – served in a 1/2 liter glass. Pils is a lightly-toasted malt beer originally hailing from the Czech Republic and is often poorly imitated in other countries, fortunately not so in Munich.
Weissbier – a tasty, strong beer made from wheat and sometimes served with flecks of lemon in the foam. It too is served in a 1/2 glass.
There are many Oktoberfest fans around the world, and most of them learned the hard way how to and not to drink beer without loosing too much of “oneself.”
Dos and Donts of the Oktoberfest beer drinking
1) Don’t drink an entire liter on an empty stomach, and especially don’t follow that first liter with a second one just because someone else is paying.
2) Don’t chug German beer. German beer has a good flavor that is worth taking the time to savor.
3) Don’t play “Quarters” with German beer – or any drinking game for that matter.
Some famous quotes about beer: betold by famous people
"I work until beer o'clock."- Steven King
"Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer." - Henry Lawson
"Fermentation and civilization are inseparable." - John Ciardi
"I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them real facts, and beer." - Abraham Lincoln
"Wine gentrifies beer unifies." - W. Scott Griffith
"Beer will always have a definite role in the diet of an individual and can be considered a cog in the wheel of nutritional foods." - Bruce Carlton, chemist.
"Bring back beer and you bring back prosperity!"
"Wine is a gift of God, beer is a human tradition." - Martin Luther, son-in-law of a brewer.
"No matter how rich you are, you can still only drink 17 to 18 liters of beer a day." - Anonymous German nobleman.
"Fermentation may have been a greater discovery than fire." - David Rains Wallace
And lastly, hold your beer high and say: Prost! Gemulichkeit!