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Archive for the ‘Oktoberfest’ Category

Oktoberfest – The People

Friday, November 30th, 2007

My series on Oktoberfest wouldn’t be complete without highlighting some of the people we met.

Renate was the best beer waitress anyone could ask for. Friendly, fast, and German. She signed Hofbräu coasters for us to commemorate our first day at Oktoberfest.

Christof, a German guy we met in the Hofbräu-Festzelt, taught us the lyrics to Ein Prosit.

Verena and I met in the Augustiner-Festhalle, and after a bet to see who could win the Hau den Lukas (the game where you use a mallet to hit the weight and ring the bell), we exchanged e-mails. We traded e-mails with lots of people, but Verena was the only person to e-mail back, and I’m very thankful she did! You’ll hear more about her after Eurotrip II – she visited the Netherlands, and we toured Delft, Den Haag, Brussels, and Amsterdam. By the way, she won the Hau den Lukas; I contribute that to her being Bavarian. 😉

Finally, Oktoberfest wouldn’t have been what it was without the countless others we met – they helped make it an incredible, unforgettable experience.

John and Renate.  Tent: Hofbräu-Festzelt.

Christof and John.  Tent: Hofbräu-Festzelt.

Verena at the biergarten wearing dirndl.  Photo courtesy of Verena.  (Thanks again!)

John and the two Germans who let us sit at their table.  Tent: Augustiner-Festhalle.

Another German, John, and me.  Tent: Augustiner-Festhalle.

Oktoberfest – The Rides

Tuesday, November 27th, 2007

The rides at Oktoberfest are all temporary, but many of them could very easily be permanent fixtures at an amusement park. We rode the Toboggan and the StarFlyer.

The roller coaster at the end of one of the midways.

The StarFlyer.

Oktoberfest from the StarFlyer.

The Toboggan!  (The oldest and “most classic” ride of Oktoberfest.)

The ferris wheel (aka huge wheel).

Oktoberfest – The Food

Monday, November 26th, 2007

Oktoberfest isn’t known nearly as well for its food when compared to the bier, but it should be. Over the four days we sampled nearly all of the traditional Oktoberfest food, including roasted chickens (hendl), pretzels, peanuts, and sausage (Weißwurst). The roasted chicken in the Augustiner tent was particularly good!

John chowing down on a half hendl at the Käfers Wiesen Schänke.

Augustiner’s half hendl (ze best hendl in all of ze vorld!).

Grilled fisch.  I’ve never had, but I heard it’s good.

Oktoberfest – The Bier

Sunday, November 25th, 2007

Brewed by the “Big Six” breweries, the special Oktoberfestbier is served in a 1 liter Maß (mass). Each Maß costs about €8, and at about 6% ABV, it’s wise to enjoy them with pretzels and chicken!

The “Big Six” breweries and their bier.

Prost!  Decked out in lederhosen with a Maß of Hofbräu.

Oktoberfest – The Tents

Saturday, November 24th, 2007

There’re 14 main tents at Oktoberfest, but we spent most of our time in three: the Augustiner-Festhalle (Augustiner Bräu), the Hofbräu-Festzelt (Hofbräu München), and the Käfers Wiesen Schänke (Paulaner). As you can see from my post on the festival, the tents are actually very large tin sheds (constructed and deconstructed each year), but the insides of each are elaborately decorated creating an atmosphere perfect for “merrymaking.” As an example, more than 600kg of hop decorate the ceiling of the Hofbräu-Festzelt.

Getting into the tents before 4:00pm is easy, but finding a seat is not. Even at about 1:15pm on a weekday, John and I found ourselves crisscrossing the Augustiner-Festhall for 15 minutes before we found places to sit (you’re only served food and bier if you have a seat).

In the end, we always (eventually) found places to sit, and we had a great time in all of the tents we visited. My favorite, though, was the Augustiner-Festhalle, where we spent an entire day (from 1:30pm-10:30pm). Augustiner is the local favorite, because – at least according to the Germans we met – it has the best food and the best bier! It’s impossible to describe the atmosphere (singing, prosting, eating, etc.), so I’ve included a short video, featuring the music of the Augustiner Oktoberfest band. Enjoy!

The Augustiner-Festhalle.

The Hofbräu-Festzelt.

The Käfers Wiesen Schänke.

The Löwenbräu-Festhalle.