Unfortunately, Munich's famed Oktoberfest, and Oktoberfest celebrations all over the world aren’t happening this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. And while it's impossible to duplicate the atmosphere (do you really want to pour beer all over your floor?) here are some ways to have your own Oktoberfest at home. And then go sleep in your own bed.
It would be pretty silly if we didn't start this list with the beer. While a true Oktoberfest beer (or festbier) can only be called as such if it's made at one of six breweries within Munich's city limits, many of them are widely available outside of the tents. Paulaner, Löwenbräu, Hacker-Pschorr, Spaten, and Hofbräu and Augustiner are easy to get your hands on.
A Maß is a unit of measurement in Bavaria, roughly about a litre of beer. For the true Oktoberfest experience, we suggest grabbing some Maß glasses, or steins as they're known outside of Bavaria, to serve your beer in. We can't be held responsible for your sore wrist the next day.
If you're looking for the "gotta-haves", we suggest making sure your menu includes rotisserie chicken, brez'n (huge, doughy pretzels), red cabbage or sauerkraut, potatoes and, of course, bratwurst mit brötchen. A currywurst is a great option for a snack too--just sprinkle some of your favourite curry powder over ketchup and smother your bratwurst with it.
So, pretty much starch and meat.
We all know you can't even begin to pretend that you're having an Oktoberfest party if you're not wearing the right outfit. Men have it relatively easy--find some lederhosen and a trachten shirt and get ready to party (socks and a hat can complete the outfit). Women, on the other hand, have some choices to make: if wearing a dirndl, the more authentic styles have longer skirts--below the knees--called a "midi". Tourists and younger ladies tend to wear a "mini". The dirndlblusen (white blouse under the dirndl) can come in varying levels of, ahem, "exposure". But whatever you do, make sure your apron's knot is tied correctly: taken women tie theirs on the right while those who are single--and ready to mingle--tie it on the left. Tied in the back? She's a widow or your waitress. Hands off the ones with it tied on the front--she's a virgin.
Don't feel like going through all that? Then this shirt will do: Löwenbräu Oktoberfest T-Shirt
Okay, obviously it’s not the same as being there in person, but if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that we need to make the best with what we have! Here’s a few ways you can celebrate without the pandemic getting in the way:
It's not a party without music. And it's certainly not Oktoberfest without some foot-stomping, bench-dancing, beer-spilling tunes. While your traditional Oompah music would definitely go down a storm, here's some of our favourites from the fest that should make it on your playlist:
Sweet Caroline--Neil Diamond
Sweet Home Alabama--Lynyrd Skynyrd
I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)--The Proclaimers
Hey Baby--Bruce Channel
Tubthumping (I Get Knocked Down)--Chumbawamba
It's Raining Men--The Weather Girls
Take Me Home, Country Roads--John Denver
Hang On Sloopy--The McCoys
I'm Walking On Sunshine--Katrina and the Waves
And finally, knowing the words to arguably the most important Oktoberfest song is imperative. Played at least every 20 minutes, "Ein Prosit" is the most played German drinking song at Oktoberfest. Stand on that bench, swing that stein and pay no attention to the beer you just spilled down the front of yourself--just make sure you sing along!
Ein Prosit, ein PrositDer GemütlichkeitEin Prosit, ein PrositDer Gemütlichkeit.
OANS! ZWOA! DREI! G'SUFFA!
We can't be together in person, but we can still drink together from afar! The Oktoberfest beer has been brewed and is ready to be enjoyed. Prost!
Father’s Day, 19th June 2022, is the special date in the calendar when we celebrate and give a nod to the Dads in our lives. It’s an excuse to spoil them with a little something to say thank you for being awesome. If you’re looking for inspiration for a craft beer-loving Dad, then check out our top 7 Father’s Day beer gifts.
Every year, Beer Hawk releases a lineup of limited edition craft beer mixed cases for the holiday season. This year's lineup of festive Christmas beer gifts is guaranteed to put a smile on everyone’s face.
Remember the childhood excitement of opening a new door on your advent calendar every day in the run up to Christmas? It gave each day a little sparkle of festive magic, even though those tiny chocolates behind the doors were always a bit rubbish. How would you like to recapture that childhood magic, but with bottles of delicious beer instead of powdery chocolate? Sounds amazing, right? In that case, you need to get your hands on our Craft Beer Advent Calendar.
Pairing beer and food together isn’t all rules and science. That would make for a terribly boring dinner party! Instead, it’s the art of taking a good beer, some good food and partnering them together to make something even better. It’s the adventure of discovering what works, what doesn’t and what you like. It’s you taking a bite, taking a sip and then declaring your undying love for that imperial stout and chocolate cake.
Barrel-ageing beers is not a new thing, but it is getting more and more popular, and has probably never been as inventive. Adrian Tierney-Jones explores the new wave of ageing beer in wood
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