Cocktails & Spirits

A lot of beer and nobody to drink it: Bayfront Oktoberfest

Ah, Oktoberfest: beer, greasy food, and brawny men in tight overalls dancing the higglety pigglety. We had a few local fest options this weekend, but we went with beer company Hoffbrau's Bayfront Park shindig because its website has tinny accordion music and many typos, thereby convincing us of its authenticity.

The festival was held in a giant tent in the park, and perhaps on Friday and Saturday, it drew large crowds. But we went Sunday night and found the festival almost empty. That could have had something to do with the prices, which weren't exactly recession-friendly: steins of Hoffbrau, although gigantic, cost $15 each, and the food was even less reasonably priced. The contents of the above photo were indeed pleasurable going down -- especially the irresistible potato pancake, accompanied by a dipping pool of apple sauce -- but their cost totaled $38! Alas, to try the much-heralded sausage would have drained my savings account.

I suppose you're paying for the entertainment as well (shown above -- can you pick out the drunken tourist who crashed the photo?). A full band, decked out in German folk gear, played some old-country hits and some strange selections as well; you haven't lived until you've heard the trombone-and-accordion version of "Knocking on Heaven's Door." And there's something very impressive about men who are able to retain their masculinity even as they display a dance that resembles an elaborate game of patty-cake. After the jump is a video of one such dance. After that video is a video of a more common performance that night: really sloppy-drunk dancing (not safe for offices that frown on giant boobs almost popping out of ethnic folk dresses). Forgive the shaky camera work; I was (shock!) drunk.

-- Gus Garcia-Roberts

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Gus Garcia-Roberts