October is finally here, and with it, residents from various areas of Sacramento and tourists alike are following the sights, sounds, and smells associated with the much-awaited and well-honored Oktoberfest. As patrons indulge in the various German beers and delicacies served at leading Sacramento restaurants and festival establishments—such as Sam’s Hof Brau, for instance—it would be a good time to ask: “What is Oktoberfest, and why are we celebrating it?”


GermanFoodGuide.com provides a brief description of the goings-on at this fall festival, what it commemorates, and what festival-goers can look forward to experiencing:

Traditionally, the festival begins on the first Saturday after September 15th and ends on the first Sunday in October. If the first Sunday in October is October 1st or 2nd, then the festival is extended to October 3rd to include the German Reunification Day.

The festival in Munich consists of lots of beer and food, served in huge tents owned by different breweries, restaurants, and other establishments. There are bands playing tradtional Bavarian music, as well as modern bands in the evening hours that play rock, pop, and dance music. To keep with tradition, many visitors wear the tradtional clothes: Lederhosen for men; Dirndl dresses for women.

In Bavaria, these festivals usually fall within October because Marzen-Beer brewing is usually completed during this month. The original Oktoberfest in Munich has been celebrated for over 200 years, dating back to the wedding of the Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Theresa of Hildburghausen in October 12, 1810.

For those who want to experience the best that German cuisine has to offer, Sam’s Hof Brau is a staple to the German-American cuisine at  restaurants in Sacramento. They offer an assortment of authentic dishes such as German pot roast, sauerkraut and sausages, wiener schnitzels, and Germany’s beloved gingerbread cookies. Since Oktoberfest’s main attraction is no doubt the different beers, such a restaurant would offer a variety of German brews festival-goers will surely enjoy.

Oktoberfest is a celebration of German culture and traditions. What better way to commemorate such a grand and exciting festival than to try out the various delicacies and beers served during this month-long celebration? Don’t forget to wear your Dirndl and Lederhosen as well!

(Source: Oktoberfest, germanfoodguide.com)