Oktoberfest season is well underway. Seasonal German-inspired märzens, festbiers, and lagers are flowing on tap around the city and at upcoming festivals. Check out photographs of last weekend’s Oktoberfest fun, such as Stephanie Michaelis (above) preparing for East Forty Brewing’s stein holding contest, and Transport Brewery’s festival highlights. There’s still time to celebrate Oktoberfest with upcoming events listed below. Put on your lederhosen, get a taste of festbier, chow on a bratwurst, and get festive.
UPCOMING OKTOBERFEST EVENTS
A Fest in October
Diametric Brewing in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, releases two beers – A Fest in October and Pump-Cadian, a Kolsch-style golden ale with pumpkin. Burn Theory Fire Kitchen will serve German-style wurst, sauerkraut, pretzels, and other treats. Free admission.
Pathlight Oktoberfest Weekend
Pathlight Brewing in Shawnee, Kansas, releases several modern German-style beers – Therese Hefeweizen, Rose of St. Olaf Belgian Style Wild Ale with Raspberries and Cherries, and Ludwig, a Festbier on the slow pour tap that builds a large frothy head. Kravin’ It KC serves a German-themed menu on Friday and housemade Bavarian pretzels on Saturday. Feast on Wiener Wagon artisan sausages on Saturday as well. Free admission.
KC Bier Co Presents: KC Oktoberfest 2021
This two-day fest at Crown Center presented by Kansas City Bier Company features locally-brewed German-style bier, food, dancers, costume contests, and live entertainment, including Bavarski Band and The Polka Brothers. The fest is modeled after the original Munich Oktoberfest in Bavaria, Germany. Tickets.
Oktoberfest Live! at KC Live!
Leinenkugel’s presents the 5th annual Oktoberfest in the Power & Light District. Featuring traditional Oktoberfest contests, games, seasonal beers, food, and more. Tickets.
Boulevard Brewing Company hosts the 8th annual ¡Oktoberfiesta!, a benefit for Mattie Rhodes Center, at BLVD Tours and Rec Center. Play all-ages bingo from 11 am-1 pm. Stick around in the afternoon from 1-6 pm (21+) for beer, food, live music from The 3 Amigos KC Mariachi Band, and the daunting masskrugstemmen stein-holding contest. Reserve a limited-edition 1-liter stein and first fill ($20) in advance.
Transport Brewery held its Oktoberfest last weekend, filling the taproom and parking lot behind the brewery with festival-goers. The Happy Wanderers performed traditional German songs. Werners sold its delectable bratwurst and other sausages. From holding steins in competition to drinking beer out of a boot to doing the chicken dance, the community had a festive time. Pop over to the taproom to catch the Festbier, Prost! Kolsch, Berliner Weisse, and other styles on tap while supplies last.
East Forty Brewing in Blue Springs, Missouri, also held its Oktoberfest last weekend. The Happy Wanderers serenaded guests with waltzes and traditional music. A stein-holding competition, sausage-eating, and festival beer drinking ensued.
While supplies last, the taproom has a wide variety of German-inspired styles and less-traditional spins made with the adventurous spirit of American craft brewing. Start with Fest Pils, a hybrid with the low ABV of a pilsener and malt backbone, more prominent hops, and fuller body of a Festbier. The Oktoberfest märzen is a straightforward bready, malty lager with a more modern golden color. Other offerings include Weissbier, a traditional hefeweizen with a yeasty profile and banana-clove notes, the same Haus Weiss German-style wheat with hot cinnamon and honey, and a Smoked Chili Oktoberfest made with five smoked chilis. Plenty of flagships and other non-German options are also on tap.
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Pete Dulin is the founder and editor of kcaletrail.com. His most recent book is Expedition of Thirst: Exploring Breweries, Distilleries and Wineries Across Central Kansas and Missouri. Pete’s other books include Kansas City Beer: A History of Brewing in the Heartland (The History Press, American Palate series), KC Ale Trail (out of print), and Last Bite: 100 Simple Recipes from Kansas City’s Best Chefs and Cooks.