Eins, Zwei, Zuffa!
Well- back from Oktoberfest and what a treat for the palate! Started off the first night with a Schweinehaxn, which is literally a pigs knuckle. A big round bone of roast pork with a very crispy, salty skin (like crackling), and served with a rich gravy. I must admit, I was somewhat apprehensive at first, but ordered it at the recommendation of my father, and very glad I did. Other nights, we jumped from wursts at the festival grounds to wienerschnitzel at the Spatenhaus.
But of course, the main fare at the Oktoberfest is Bier, and we consumed much of it. We spent the better part of two days at the Oktoberfest and much of that in the Hofbrauhaus tent. We were lucky enough to have tent reservations the first afternoon which is key. Without a reservation, you better be seated in a tent by 11am at the latest. Otherwise, all the seating is filled, and without a seat, no beer...or "Nein" (which we heard plenty of the second afternoon).
There are a couple of things I had in my head about Oktoberfest prior to heading out (either myth or misconception), that turned out to be completely different from reality:
1) I had heard, from several sources mind you, that you rarely see drunk people. Myth- within my first hour of being there some old guy is falling on the table and making a mess of himself. Saw numerous people passed out. Trust me, if you drink beer from 11am or earlier, til 11pm, out of litre jugs, you will get drunk.
2) You'll see as many English, Australians and Americans as you will see Germans. Myth- What I saw was overwhelmingly Germans (with a fair amount of Italians thrown in). Many dressed in traditional Bavarian clothing (see picture below). And most saying "Nein" (no) when we were trying to get them to buy beer for us when we were table-less.
3) I would be singing tons of traditional German beer songs. Let's put it this way, the first song I heard from the Oom-pah band when I arrived was a Bon Jovi song. Followed by a Beatles song. And then Country Road. And then the crowd favorite- "Hey-ey Baby! Hoo! Hah! I Wanna Know-ow-ow , Will You Be My Girl". They play this song constantly, regardless of the tent you're in, and the crowd goes nuts. Every 15 minutes or so, you get the Ein Prosit song, which is basically 20 seconds long and is a call for a group social of about 5000 people.
Anyway- it was quite thew experience. Here are a couple of more pictures from the trip.