Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Oktoberfest 2013

A week after the actual Oktoberfest in Munich ended, David and I hosted our own annual festival of German beer and food. A few days out, the weather forecast was looking pretty dire. Rain, wind, snow down to 300 metres. We briefly entertained the idea of moving the event from the garage a.k.a beer hall into the house, but quickly realised there was no way we could get 50 people in there. So, in true Tasmanian fashion we pushed on with the original plan regardless.

On Saturday we cleared out the garage and picked up supplies, including the best German sausages and mustard from Silver Hill Bratwurst (made near Cygnet, sold at Salamanca Market) and 50 'Brezeln' from the Brezel Bäckerei in Sandy Bay. I made two enormous Apricot Streusel Cakes using quark (low fat curd cheese) from Elgaar Farm right here in Tasmania. We put up suitably cheesy decorations and got out some of our vast collection of German beer glasses.

On Sunday morning we moved the cars out, tables in, during the sunny breaks between waves of rain. Bought bread rolls and packed ice around the Paulaner, Schöfferhofer, Löwenbräu, Bitburger and even alcohol free Clausthaler beer. I made my favourite cucumber salad and a tomato salad. Friends brought additional German fare including proper potato salad (not that stuff with sour cream we seem to get here), apple strudel and even Rote Grütze, a summer pudding made of red berries and served with custard. David fired up the BBQ and put the sausages on... then the snow came down, to the oohs and aahs of our guests. It was freezing but no-one seemed to mind. We had beanies and jackets and stubby holders (in Sydney they were used to keep your beer cold, here we use them to keep our hands warm) and plenty of good food and cheer to keep us warm. Oh and a beautiful fire barrel with gum trees and stars cut out of the metal, kindly lent to us for the day, proved popular with those happy to brave the late afternoon snow drifts. The photos below show what happened after the fest... a lovely mid-spring day!

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