If you think Munich’s famed Oktoberfest is an excuse for party-goers to heavily consume seasonal beer for two weeks straight, you’re right. In preparation for Oktoberfest 2020 and in recognition of the German heritage of Idaho, here are a few suggestions for pairing your favorite beers with traditional Oktoberfest bites.
Oktoberfest dates back to 1810 and the celebration of a German royal wedding. While the scene won’t be exactly the same in Ketchum, you will still find some of the rich traditions that go along with the good times. One of those traditions is Pilsner – the most heavily consumed beer at any Oktoberfest celebration.
Germans rank fourth in the world in beer consumption. Idaho’s stats are not quite as impressive in this category raking 33rd in the U.S. for beer consumption per capita, (but the state does top the list when it comes to wine). Interestingly, Germans don’t even place in the top 25 for liquor consumption, so for them, it must be less about the buzz and more about the brew.
Enough with the history, onto the Lederhosen and delicious pairings of food and beer.
Bavarian Soft Pretzels
A Bavarian soft pretzel is something that you CANNOT miss during Oktoberfest. These pretzels are simply delicious and pair well with nearly all German beers.
Beer pairing recommendations: Pilsner, Dunkelweiss, Märzen, and Weissbeir
Bratwurst with sauerkraut may be the most well-known German dish. Cook the Bratwurst with a Pilsner, finish the sausage on the grill and top them with traditional sauerkraut. our mouths are watering just writing about it!
Beer pairing recommendations: Pilsner or Weizenbock (and if it’s a mild Bratwurst, nearly any German beer will do!)
One of our favorite German eats is traditional Pork Schnitzel. (If you’ve spent much time in the Wood River Valley, it’s highly likely you’ve heard about the Sawtooth Hotel’s Pork Schnitzel, but we digress.) Thanks to its crisp breading, this delicious dinner pairs perfectly with many German beers.
Beer pairing recommendations: Pilsner, Helles, Märzen, Vienna Lager, and Dunkel.
The list goes on and on, and we encourage you to explore a bit for yourself. Attend an Oktoberfest near you, or head to Festival Meadows in Ketchum on September 18 and 19 for a stein full of your favorite Oktoberfest beer.