‘tis The Oktoberfest Season

It’s that time of year to get into your beer: Oktoberfest season! 

While the festival originated Oct. 12, 1810 – in celebration of the marriage of the crown prince of Bavaria, who later became King Louis I, to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen – at some point in history, Oktoberfest moved to September with its longer days and warmer weather (but, Septoberfest just doesn’t sound right). In Munich, Germany it is held over a two-week period, ending on the first Sunday in October to keep with tradition. 

Here in the U.S., we don our lederhosen and dirndls that have been sitting in the back of the closet since last September and join in the celebrations at the Cherry Hut’s Falltoberfest in Fish Creek, Sept. 29- Oct. 1; the 5th annual Oktoberfest on Sept. 30 at Hügel Haus in Ellison Bay; and Sway in Baileys Harbor, going all out with three weekends of celebration, Sept. 22-23, Sept. 29-30 and Oct. 6-7. 

Check Facebook and Instagram pages for times, live music, food and beer selections.

It’s also the time of year when we turn to maltier beers – the cooler, fall weather doesn’t really have us thinking of hoppy IPA’s and lighter lawn-mowing beers. Two quintessential German-fest beers easily found in the U.S. are Ayinger Oktober Fest-Märzen from Ayinger Privatbrauerei and Spaten Oktoberfest Ur-Märzen from Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu. Spaten can be found on tap at Hügel Haus year-round. These beers are worth seeking out, as well as many American breweries’ fest beers found throughout the county this festival season.