All About Oktoberfest Beer:
Oktoberfest Beers and Octoberfest Craft Beer 2018
Munich breweries at Oktoberfest include famous names like Paulaner, Spaten, Löwenbräu, Augustiner, Hofbräu and Hacker-Pschorr. Augustiner also runs a popular Munich beer garden, Augustiner Keller München, near the Oktoberfest grounds and main hauptbahnhof train station in Munich.
Oktoberfest beers, also known as Oktoberfestbier, include full-bodied lagers called Märzen. Also ordered at Oktoberfest are wheat beers like hefeweizen or ‘hefe,’ offered in a traditional, unfiltered variety with a smooth texture. Some hefeweizen beers have a fruity, banana or nutty finish and delicious paired with cheeses. Another beer pairing is Märzen or lager paired with sausage, traditional charcuterie cold cuts or salami.
If your preference is pilsner, you’ll also likely find Bitburger beer and other German pilsner or pale lager. For a dark beer, there’s Dunkel lager such as by Paulaner and Dunkel weizen by Franziskaner, with a maltier or roasted taste.
Other German beers served during Oktoberfest include Weihenstephaner (the oldest operating brewery in the world from 1040!) Oktoberfestbier, Warsteiner Oktoberfest beer, Ayinger Oktober Fest Märzen and Erdinger Weissbier. Weihenstephaner isn’t a Munich brewery but located north of the city in Freising, Bavaria, and there is a brewery tour.
One of Munich’s most famous attractions, the Hofbräuhaus beer hall, was also one of the first establishments in the area to expand around the world. Hofbräuhaus was founded in 1589 by Wilhelm V, Duke of Bavaria and is situated in the historic city centre, Platzl 9.
There are now Hofbräu beer halls from Australia to the United States, including Pittsburgh, Chicagoland, Miami, Cleveland and Las Vegas, each providing a taste of German cuisine and brews. Cincinnati, Ohio – one of Munich’s sister cities is served by the Hofbräuhaus Newport, just across the Ohio River, in Kentucky.
Oktoberfest beers have also inspired Oktoberfest or Octoberfest beers by brewers internationally.
Among the best Oktoberfest beers or Octoberfest beers including craft breweries to experience are Saranac Brewery Octoberfest beer of New York state, Left Hand Brewing Oktoberfest beer of Colorado, Schell’s and Summit Brewing in Minnesota, Mill Street & Parallel 49 of Canada, Yuengling Oktoberfest of Pennsylvania, Sam Adams Octoberfest Beer from Massachusetts, Great Lakes Brewing Oktoberfest, Goose Island Oktoberfest of Chicago, Schlafly Oktoberfest of St. Louis, Missouri, Santa Fe Brewing Oktoberfest, Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest of California and Widmer Brothers of Oregon.
Many of these breweries including Schlafly, Left Hand Brewing, Mill Street, Summit Brewing and Sierra Nevada have tap rooms or tasting rooms to try their beers and Oktoberfest seasonal beers.
Did you know? In South America, the largest Oktoberfest is in Brazil. Germans were the fourth largest ethnic group to settle in Brazil, after Portuguese immigrants, the Italians and Spaniards. The Brazilian beer Brahma also produces an Oktoberfest edition served at Oktoberfest of Blumenau in Brazil’s state of Santa Catarina. It’s located southwest of Rio, accessible by car or flight to the city of Navegantes.
Oktoberfest or Octoberfest beers are some of the top seasonal, craft beers, available on tap or bottled in autumn to join a slate of fall beers like red, autumn and pumpkin or pumpkin fest ales.
Today, Oktoberfest beers are enjoyed worldwide from America, Canada and Mexico, to the Caribbean islands, Central and South America, South Africa, Asia, Australia, New Zealand… and of course in Europe.
And – freshly baked pretzels (brezel), a traditional snacking staple, are now more available too!
Oktoberfest beer glasses and glassware
Beer boots, beer steins and Oktoberfest glass beer mugs are among the ways to serve at an Oktoberfest party or celebration.
A bierkrug is a glass beer mug that comes in a liter (about two pints) – commonly served at Munich’s biergartens/beer gardens and Oktoberfest – or a half liter. These mugs are often collected for their emblems of local brewers or regions. Oktoberfest beer mugs are sometimes confused with biersteins or beersteins that are earthenware or ceramic beer mugs.
Beer boots on the other hand have become more popular at German restaurants and beer gardens today. The origin of the beer boot is likely modeling after traditional boots worn at festive occasions, though it’s commonly believed a general had promised troops to drink beer from his boot if they succeeded in their battle. It’s best to drink from a beer boot with its toe pointed toward you, as in the festival photo example, to avoid splash!
Have a recommendation for your favorite Oktoberfest beer? Let us know!
Next: Pick up some useful German phrases or view Oktoberfest trivia.
Attending Oktoberfest? View our best Oktoberfests list 2018 for an Oktoberfest beer under a tent!
Or learn more about Oktoberfest beer’s origins in Bavaria, Germany.