All photos except for the table runner and beer ones are copyright Runningonempty.
Well, I have had German readers for almost as long as this blog has been running, so I decided to throw an Oktoberfest party in a park yesterday. (Watch out, your country could be next!)
Cultural appreciation, not cultural appropriation.
I learned so much while researching Oktoberfest. I had never attended one in Australia because of the reputation for drunkenness. The original celebration, though, in Munich, Bavaria, Germany, is replete with parades, colour, music, special foods, horse racing, history, beautiful costumes , fairground rides, etc.
Here is our casual small-town Australian version (well of course the bratwürst sausages had to be barbecued, here! ) They were specially made by our local butcher. I checked that he knew the correct recipe when I ordered, he did! Beef mince, pork mince, pork fat, certain spices. I had to buy five kilos minimum, but that’s ok, as he said I got a discount for volume! (Still scratching my head at that one. ) Gee, they were nice sausages though! Hubby cooked onions with them. The pewter plate in the rear is a souvenir from Coburg, Germany, and a guest brought the small pretzels, that I put on a silver plate.
Acerules and I dressed up, someone asked if that is her real hair, it is! She is wearing a dress embroidered with cherries, with an off the shoulder black blouse that was adapted with lace by Katja, who does our alterations, under it. Apron was from the op (thrift) shop. Dress was from Ebay, and she can wear it on a variety of occasions. Hat was from a party shop in a local city and my costume (a red , white and black long version of the dirndl and a grey felt hat ) also came from there.
We put up decorations, blue and white Bavarian flag bunting, (shown behind my friend):
big Oktoberfest banner, in which I had to cut air holes because it was quite windy,
man in lederhosen cardboard cut out, fraulein cardboard cutout, blue and white vintage gingham tablecloths, blue and white vintage German embroidered table runner, saying “love is the best cook”, all purchased on Ebay (one gingham tablecloth was from a local op (thrift) shop).
Ebay image of the table runner, as I forgot to photograph the drinks table:
We had blue and white flowers, in our lead pewter tankards (it’s not safe to drink from lead, I only use those for decoration, all the pewter we use for food and drink is lead free.) Flowers were also in my big blue pottery vase, lovely floral arrangements thanks to my florist that I always use. There were also some from my Spring garden: bluebells, forgetmenots and little white daisies. We had printed out Bavarian and German flag and coat of arms images (the top right one is an unofficial version of the German Federal flag as the official one has restricted use by law). Top left and bottom are Bavarian:
Wikipedia image print outs.
Top is an historical Bavarian coat of arms, bottom is the German flag:
Wikipedia image print outs.
We had a beer glass that read Germany, a ceramic stein (beer tankard with handle) that read Oktoberfest, a ceramic stein with the German states on it, and a big heavy glass Löwenbräu stein. All four, and the tablecloth were purchased from Ebay, and were vintage (reduce, reuse, recycle).
We also put out our lead free pewter drinkware. We took our folding chairs and table to supplement the wooden ones there, and friends also brought some.
I had a big order in at the bakery for fresh hot dog rolls and 2 cherry pies, the only problem was the baker went away and they gave me one apple and one blueberry instead.
I made salad, the easy way, by combining different bagged lettuces, and a salad with grated carrot and cabbage in it, then threw in some “cherry” (small) tomatoes, in our big pewter bowl. Hubby and I bought different condiments, mustards both mild and wholegrain, sauerkraut, cucumber pickles , tomato sauces.
German biscuits and tomato nibbles brought by friends, forget me nots and daisies from our garden, vase from an op (thrift) shop:
In Australia, BYO (bring your own) can apply to food or drink, depending what the invitation says and “bring a plate” means a plate with something on it:
One nice specialty tomato sauce by Beerenberg, comes from Hahndorf in the Barossa Valley, a German bastion here in Australia. I’ve been to the Barossa, famed for it’s wineries, it’s a great place to visit, and Hahndorf is very cute:
I also supplied some fairly low price but quite drinkable pinot noir wine by Wolf Blass, also situated in the Barossa. I put it in a vintage ice bucket (shown behind):
I bought beer from Germany,
Image is from Woolworths web site as I forgot to photograph the beer.
I made apple spritzer from sparkling mineral water and apple juice in our big pewter punch bowl. I did try to get the authentic German kind but it was going to get here too late, as coming from Western Australia. I bought lemon soft drink (soda).
Good friends went to a city in the region and bought big pretzels that she presented very nicely:
German Oktoberfest biscuits they bought:
They also brought Rösti, (German hash browns), and the lady made lovely costumes for herself and her partner.
A few of the other guests:
I’m very grateful to friends that came and those that helped with transport of goods or brought things. No businesses mentioned in this post gave me free stuff. All opinions are my own. Prost, (cheers) everybody, leave a comment!
Wolf Blass wines:
History of the famous Beerenberg sauces and jams:
Beerenberg tomato sauce:
An Oktoberfest party is fun for you to do, during the official period in September-early October. Here is an Oktoberfest tablescape inside at home, by my fellow blogger Angelina, who states she has German roots: