Bar Tending & Beerspectives
by Matt Martinkovic
Brewsearch & Development -
Nik's Wunderbar - Whitehouse Station NJ
Since we're in the midst of a great Oktoberfest celebration here at Nik's Wunderbar I thought
it might be appropriate to talk about that other Oktoberfest in Munich.   It's an age old
tradition that was started in 1810. The celebration then lasted just five days in honor of the
wedding of the Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen.
The whole affair started Oct. 10 when the couple got married and ended on the 15th when
they had a giant horse race. There has been a celebration almost every year since.

There's one really confusing factor in the modern Oktoberfest for most people: It starts
in September,at  noon Saturday, Sept. 19, to be exact. What's up with that, you ask? The
answer is fairly straightforward - the weather in Germany starts to get bad in October,
so to combat that the celebration dates were moved ahead.

The Oktoberfest has attracted between 5 and 7 million visitors each year during the last
decade. Roughly 70% visitors come from Bavaria, 15 % from the rest of Germany and15%
from European countries, the US, Australia and Canada.

Entry to the Oktoberfest grounds (Wiesn) is free, as is entry to the tents .Children under
the age of six are not allowed in beer tents past 8pm. Kids up to the age of 14 can
only go with their parents and are not allowed to drink beer.
In an effort to keep festival attendees as safe, the Red Cross has set up 15 hangover
beds for people this year.  In the past few festivals an average of 7,000 people each
year needed  treatment  for various aliments.

At Oktoberfest, there's a lot of standing, as there are fewer seats than there are visitors.
The largest Oktoberfest beer tent of all time was the Pschorr-Brau-Rosl-tent in 1913,
which held 12,000 people. Today, the Hofbrau-Festhalle is the largest tent, with
10,000 seats. But you better get there early.

Overall there are 13 huge drinking tents,and all beer served is made by just six Munich-based
breweries,Served in the classic 1-liter beer stein, the average Oktoberfestbier golden lager
has a6% ABV, Over 6.4 million litres of beer was bought at last year’s event.

Beyond the usual suspects of lost items last year – including 1056 passports, 520
wallets, 320 mobile phones, 300 bags and rucksacks, and 50 cameras – there were
some more peculiar finds, such as two wedding-rings, a hearing-aid, a set of false
teeth,a tombstone shaped like a pencil and a Segway.

Hope to see you soon at Nik's Wunderbar.



And don't forget my friends at the  Northside Lounge,
100 Brooks Boulevard, Manville, NJ 08835     908-722-7712
Matt Martinkovic is not only a recognized beer authority but a well known ecological writer whose
work has appeared in the The American Midland Naturalist (University of Notre Dame) among other
industry publications.  He also has been an agricultural consultant on, of course, the growing of hops.
To all my readers and friends, please stop in and say hello to me at my new home, the great
Nik's Wunderbar,    It's an exclusive Bavarian beer hall and beer garden focusing on
German dishes and German brews. The staff wears traditional Bavarian dress too!  When you come in
be sure to sign up for my free newsletter.  And tell them you saw it here on BeerNexus!
454 Route 22 West Whitehouse Station, NJ 08888
For Matt's latest Wunderbar Newsletter click HERE