Tuesday, September 22, 2009


I feel like I'm sober enough, and have digested enough, to finally discuss our Oktoberfestivities.

Firstly, and of great importance, there was the pre-Oktoberfest German Lunch Date with my dear friend and genuine Germaness, Elkit.

She has been my chaperon into the world of authentic German cuisine and I will tell you what, this gal pal of mine knows her way around a cut of meat. And twist of pretzel. And slice of strudel. And brine of pickle.

Plus, she teaches me totally irrelevant words to present to the nice women at Esther's where they are so sweet and of such good humor (though I was told Germans weren't allowed to have a sense of humor - lies!) that they giggle, give Elke a smirk and then graciously retrieve whatever six items I'm pointing at when I tell them I want three scheibenwischer and three arschgeweigh.

Real words, too. Look 'em up.

Pretzel is just "Bretzel". Handy, that.

I would have taken a photo of the spinach and cheese strudel and green salad (seriously, an awesome salad) that I ate for lunch on our pre-Oktoberfest lunch date, but I was so consumed with love and devotion for this plate when it arrived that I shoved it down my gullet faster than I could say, glockenspiel. Which, incidentally, is the other word I know in German, and is in no way relevant to food or our circumstances.

Anyway, after our lunch of a thousand Käse Brezels (this was my new word for that day), we headed over to Dittmer's German Butchery and Land of Mammoth Dog Bones to procure our OktoberFEAST. See, cuz, we weren't just going to put some brats on the grill, crack open some cans of Coor's Light and call the driveway a beer garden.


This is Sydney.
He thought Andy was a sheep. There was much subsequent herding around the keg.

No, this was going to be a Munich cum California-style Oktoberfest where we only strayed from the traditional Oktoberfest food traditions by putting the various meats on a grill rather than in a bath of beer.

Course 1: Many brats.

Other than that - it was going to be fairly legit. And our friend Mike helped us down this road to obscene pork consumption quite stealthily. Especially when Elke just told him to "Do whatever you want. You know what I like."

Elke apparently likes meat in all forms. Particularly bratted, smoked and sliced.

Well, OK, but that meant that suddenly we had a handful of purportedly delicious small sausages, some weisswurst (which is a white sausage made, I believe, from veal), some big sausages from elsewhere (they were conducting business in German and clearly my grasp of the language is not a strong one), some slices of Leberkäs which translates to "liver cheese" even though there's not liver OR cheese in it but instead looks like spam and a stack of smoked pork chops the deliciousness of which I had never fully understood.

Slices of Leberkäs looking like toast on the grill.

Leberkäs - or as we took to calling it, Curly German Spam.

What I'm trying to tell you is that we had a lot of meat right there and then I bought some dog bones for the dogs who would be OktoberFEASTing with us and HOLY were they also bigger than anything I'd ever imagined could come from a real animal. One observant commenter suggested they may be courtesy of a hobbling mastodon and I can't honestly rule that out. Big, people, they were BIG.

Adelaide was up to the task of taming this beast. I heard her bitch slap it before she started chewing.

And so the dogs behaved for five minutes so that we could eat with all of our might.

Jada whispers sweet nothings to this bone. Her battle strategy is a strange one.

Now, of course, I have said nothing yet of the beer. And the beer was a crucial, if not monumental, element of the event. The monumentalness coming from the fact that our host, being of sound mind and Oktoberfest planning ability, booked a keg (yes, for 8 people, we likey to drink beers) of Spaten Oktoberfest in advance to ensure the consistent German authenticity of the day.

Well, boo. He showed up to get the keg and NAUGHTY they'd sold our keg of Oktoberfest to some other super lucky and SUPER SNEAKY Oktoberfester. Jerks.


Well, if you're me, you go ahead and lose your shit at the manager and then demand things like free beer, newborn child naming rights and a free kick to the crotch for the one found responsible, but if you're our host (and let's hope you are because my methods aren't always super effective) you calmly suggest that they might instead regain your love, devotion and future patronage by giving you a keg of whatever the hell else you desire at the price of, say, Pabst Blue Ribbon.

Thankfully it still tasted like Spaten.

Which they did. So, we spent our day guiding various grilled German delicacies down our throats with the assistance of a good deal of Spaten. The regular old good kind that, I hear, is still acceptable to drink at Oktoberfest even if it's not the actual Oktoberfest variety. And since it was available for the low low price of cat piss (PBR), there happened to be a second run to Dittmer's for additional meat because what if we run out of bratwurst?

You might not think 8 people can eat all these brats and go back for pork chops, but you would be wrong.


Also, let it be known that there was also a fine, fine Kartoffelsalat (potato salad - see, I'm learning some words, here.) handmade by our resident Germaness, a tomato cucumber salad, a few varieties of pickles courtesy of moi, a tower of freshly baked pretzels, a dozen kinds of mustard and beer. Plus, some beer. And then some meat. And beer meat. You see where I'm going with this.

Kartoffelsalat. Say it with me.


And all this was had and enjoyed in the relaxing atmosphere of our hosts' backyard, under the canopy of a blessedly large umbrella which shielded us from the preposterous early fall heat wave beating down on our town. The dogs were able to frolic and herd (Aussies are so herd-y!) and chew their big ass bones. The people were free to make grotesque monsters of themselves as they ate enough meat and drank enough beer for two dozen normal people.

Three of the eight Festers readying their bellies. Prost!

The pretzel was bigger than my dog.

I feel our beer garden was fairly authentic in this regard.

And for anyone worried about the calorie consumption for the day (though I'm not sure why you would be but it gives me a chance to reassure myself), I'll have you know that I did my 12 mile training run that morning and cooled down by doing about five hours of yard work with Bubba in which we removed both front and back lawns.

So, by the time we arrived at Oktoberfeasting, we had probably, together, burned around 7 million calories. I imagine. It's a ballpark guess.

And I have a newfound love for Oktoberfest because the food can be, and should be, really really good.


  1. Those are some sexy-looking pretzels.

    We will be attending our own Oktoberfest celebration this weekend, at the annual event held by a man named, appropriately, Hans. Hans came to America from Germany with his parents when he was 12 years old. Hans has never been married, is now at least in his late 70s, and still lives with his mother, who has got to be in her mid-90s. Hans also invites half the county to his barn every year to drink beer, eat food, and listen to a German band.

    Hans is cool.

  2. Next year I'm following you, hiding in the bushes, and stealing your pretzels while you're ogling the meat.

  3. I'm thinking I'll forgo the Oktoberfestivities this year. It would just give me back that ten pounds I've lost. (I do not want it back, thankyouverymuch!)
    The food all looks so scrumptous. I am happy that you enjoyed it and passed along the fetiveness!

  4. While the stitch-holder post was lost on me, the Oktoberfeasting was not. Not sure, but I do believe it has something to do with my XY pairing of chromosomes.

    However, all the food pics and descriptions got my lederhosen in a bunch. Thanks.

  5. OMG, isn't German food so good?!

    Here's a good word to add to your vocab: Scheiße!


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