Oktoberfest in NYC: Where to celebrate

Get in the Oktoberfest spirit.
Get in the Oktoberfest spirit. Photo Credit: Newsday/Matt Davies

Break out the lederhosen, Alpine hats and dirndls — Oktoberfest is upon us.

Even 4,000 miles from Munich, New Yorkers can find plenty of ways to celebrate the German beer festival once it kicks off this Saturday.

“As a beer nerd, what’s most exciting about fall and Oktoberfest season is that it highlights a litany of often forgotten classic German styles,” says Leland Estes, general manager at Clinton Hall. “We often forget that Germany established the foundation for not only our current vernacular but a disproportionate amount of our brewing styles.”

If you’re looking to pay proper homage, here’s where you can get your fill of Bavarian brews and bratwurst, from German biergartens to American spots putting their spin on the festivities.

Bar 21

Trade the award-winning wine list and classic bar bites for some Oktoberfest specials at this midtown lounge. From Sept. 22-Oct. 31, find Warsteiner Oktoberfest and Hofbrau Oktoberfestbier on draft, while Executive Chef Sylvain Delpique does his take of classic German fare with his pastrami pretzel BLT, bratwurst in a blanket and homemade pretzels with sea salt and mornay sauce. 21 W. 52nd St., 212-582-7200

Black Forest Brooklyn

The Fort Greene beer garden kicks off its month-long celebration this Saturday, with a keg-tapping ceremony, a mug-holding competition, food specials and, in a nod to the traditional Bavarian brass bands that liven up Munich’s Oktoberfest parties, a performance by Slavic Soul Party. $10 cover; 733 Fulton St., Fort Greene, 718-935-0300


Gans Kurt Gutenbrunner’s Austro-German pub offers Bavarian fare and beer seven days a week already. But from Sept. 20 through the end of October, it’ll serve special German Oktoberfest beers alongside food specials, including pork roast, dumplings, sauerkraut, schnitzel, Bavarian sausages, pretzels, strudel and more. 139 Duane St., 212-571-8880

Blue Ribbon Brooklyn

Forget the fried chicken. Starting Sept. 20 and running through mid-October, the Park Slope restaurant’s German-born chef, Martin Brock, will offer a taste of Oktoberfest with a menu of classic Bavarian fare. That means homemade weisswurst, bratwurst and chicken-bacon-cheddar sausages, warm pretzels with obatzda and cheese spaetzle with caramelized onions. To drink, choose from pints of Riegele Alte Weisse, Jever Pilsener and Paulaner Oktoberfest Marzen. 280 Fifth Ave., Park Slope, 718-840-0071

Clinton Hall

It might take you all of Oktoberfest to try this FiDi craft beer garden’s special offerings. On Sept. 30, it’ll offer nearly 20 classic German beers on tap, from Hofbrau Oktoberfestbier to Sunner Kolsche, as well as a special menu to pair them with. Starting at 7 p.m. that day, guests can also enter a raffle for Oktoberfest-themed prizes (think steins, das boots and flags) and participate in German stein mug-holding contests. So start those arm curls now. 90 Washington St., 212-363-6000

LIC Flea & Food Beer Garden

The LIC Flea & Food’s new beer garden may be all about craft beer made by Queens breweries, but this fall it’ll have some Oktoberfest flavor. Special beers that will be offered during the month of October include Rockaway Brewery’s “Rocktoberfest,” inspired by German country ales; Finback Brewery’s seasonal IPA I Pumpkin A; and Queens Brewery’s blueberry IPA Queens Blau (fun fact: “blau” is German for blue). Open Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m., 5-25 46th Ave., Long Island City, licflea.com


This Bavarian restaurant will mark Oktoberfest with six weeks of beer, bratwurst and bands. It all starts on Sept. 20 at 6 p.m., with live music and the premiere of Master Brewer Andreas Heidenreich’s Oktoberfest beer, brewed right in the restaurant. Until Oct. 31, there’ll also be a special Oktoberfest menu featuring new dishes from Bavarian-born Chef Daniel Kill, including housemade bratwurst and weisswurst, potato pancakes, kraut cakes and spaetzle. 265 Bowery, 212-780-0300

Blocktoberfest 2014 | Sept. 20

Celebrate the city’s craft brewery scene at this Clinton Hill block party, hosted by the New York City Brewers Guild and featuring 19 Guild breweries, including newest members Transmitter Brewing, Bridge and Tunnel Brewery, Flagship Brewing, Big Alice Brewing and Grimm Artisanal Ales. Try specialty beers as well as enjoy live music and food truck eats. 1:30-5:30 p.m., general admission $10; Waverly Avenue between Atlantic Avenue and Fulton Street, newyorkcitybrewersguild.com

Oktoberfest with the New York Mets | Sept. 26

Get to Citi Field early before the Mets take on the Astros and celebrate at the team’s annual Oktoberfest Night. Tickets include access to a pre-game party in the Bullpen Plaza and a limited-edition Mets Oktoberfest Stein. 5:40-7:10 p.m., tickets $40-$50; 123-01 Roosevelt Ave., mets.com/oktoberfest

Brooklyn Pour | Sept. 27

The Village Voice’s annual Brooklyn Pour craft beer tasting event returns to Skylight One Hanson, with nearly 20 brewers in tow. Sample seasonal, micro and reserve brews from the likes of Bronx Brewery, Harlem Brewing Company and Rockaway Brewing Company and more. 2-6 p.m., tickets $55-$85; 1 Hanson Place, Fort Greene, villagevoice.com/brooklynpour

The Edible Oktoberfest | Oct. 1

Feast on potato salad, pumpernickel, pretzels, bratwurst and pork belly at this family-style dinner at Brooklyn Brewery presented by Edible Manhattan. The German-style fall feast is prepared by Peck’s and Backyard Cooking Company, with brews from Brooklyn Brewery, naturally. 6-9 p.m., tickets $40; 79 N. 11th St., Williamsburg, ediblemanhattan.com

Munich on the East River | Oct. 3-5 and Oct. 10-12

Alphabet City Bavarian biergarten Zum Schneider will lure Oktoberfest revelers to this outdoor festival, which will feature German beer, food, music and more under a big tent, just like they do it in Munich. Fridays from 4-10 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays from noon-10 p.m., general admission $25 (includes a stein); Solar One, 23rd Street and the East River, bit.ly/1pUfMLP

Food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival’s Oktoberfest | Oct. 19

Head to indoor-outdoor beer garden Studio Square for this foodie-centric German festival. Bratwurst, sauerkraut, schnitzel and strudel prepared by names like Daniel Boulud, Wolfgang Ban, Eduard Frauneder and Alex Stupak will be paired with a variety of beers. Live music and drinking games will also be on the agenda. 2-5 p.m, tickets $99 through Groupon; 35-33 36th St., Astoria, nycwff.org

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