Oktoberfest Brisbane is one of the Top 10 Oktoberfests around the world, and for two weekends (October 10-12 and 17-19), it transforms Brisbane into an authentic German town festival.
10 things you can’t miss at Oktoberfest Brisbane
Click through the gallery above for 10 things you can't miss at Oktoberfest Brisbane — and for your chance to win a double pass!
Who doesn’t love free things? And Fridays? Combine the two and you’re onto a winner. The people at Oktoberfest Brisbane know this and so have brought you Freebie F-Ride-days. On Friday 10 and Friday 17, once you’ve paid for admission, you can have all the free carnival rides you can handle, from opening to close.
Friday evenings at Oktoberfest Brisbane are a great way to wind up your working week – or unwind it, go for a spin, or roll around in circles.
And boy, are there some great rides to choose from. As the team at Oktoberfest like to point, it’s time to put all that office ‘team work’ nonsense aside and get behind the wheel at the Dodgems. It’s a crazy, laughter-filled wham-bam experience, sure to release all the week’s tensions. If it seemed like the week was just ‘all downhill’ from Monday, you can really slide off the end on the Waverider – as many times as you like, until you’ve got it out of your system. Perhaps you should climb aboard the Octopus or strap yourself in to the Rok’n’Roll and put a whole new spin on things.
All that swooping, whooping and wild times aboard your favourite ride is sure to get you set up for a fun-filled Oktoberfest.
Hands up for Haxen Haus
Do you have a hankering for roast pork knuckles? Sauerkraut? Spit-roasted chicken? All these delicious and traditional options are available at Haxen Haus. Haxen Haus has been serving hungry Germans (and Brisbanites) their annual fix of all things German using traditional German methods since 2012.
Team their scrumptious meats with mashed potato, Sauerkraut, coleslaw or hot chips and your choice of mustard, aioli, gravy or tomato sauce and you know you’ll be going back for seconds. A tip from the experts - don’t forget to taste the Leberkäse – an all time German favourite and a great hit with Aussies too!
Still got some room in your belly? Then you must try the chicken platter for two! But be warned, it’s so delicious you may not want to share! German spit-roasted chickens are an example of German technology, engineering and logic ( forget the automobile, forget Beethoven, Mercedes, Audi and Porsche) as this is a classic example of German engineering at its best. Why? Because the heating elements are at the back and in the bars that hold the chicken. These rotate and produce an all-rounded roasting. But actually that’s not the secret - it’s all about the moving of the bars. They are exchanged after a while – top goes to next, goes to next, and bottom one goes to the top. This means that the juices and fats from the top level of chickens drips down onto the next level and ‘bastes’ each chicken gradually, all the time.
Are you drooling yet?
Best of Brogsitter
Ready to meet your (wine) maker? Aussie wine connoisseurs may not be familiar with the name, but the Oktoberfest team are confident that you are ready to be introduced to these makers of magical wine. Exclusive to this year’s German Festival are three exquisite drops from Weingut Brogsitter – a family with a wine-making heritage stretching back more than four centuries. The wines are sure to tantalise your tastebuds and also happen to conveniently partner perfectly with some of the rich range of food sensations on offer.
Do you enjoy an aperitif to tickle the tongue and excite your appetite? Then you must start your culinary German journey with a bubbly glass of Brogsitter’s ‘Astoria Riesling Sekt Brut’ – this light, fresh sparkling wine honours the very best of Riesling tradition with a light-hearted kick-of-its-heels in the direction of New York’s glamorous Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. Also, if you happen to find yourself at one of the Bavarian VIP tables, this will is the perfect accompaniment to your delicious ‘Brettl’ platter of meats, cheeses and nibbles.
Next up is the Brogsitter’s fruity Riesling, with its peachy aroma and pale golden-yellow colour, is a wine that is a little difficult to pronounce but learning the correct pronunciation is well worth it. ‘Hochgewächs’ (pronounced “Hoch-Ge-Vecks”) is a German classification for Riesling wines of outstanding quality and the Brogsitter definitely fits that description. Not sure what to pair this with? Perfect with a schnitzel. We trust we don’t need to elaborate.
Saving the biggest for last, meet the Brogsitter’s ‘Terra Noir Dornfelder’ – and be prepared to knocked over. The deep magenta colour will entrance you, the rich cherry and elderberry aromas will seduce you, and the realisation that Germany has kept this Dornfelder grape variety such a secret for the past 60 years will baffle you!
Note - the Brogsitter wines at Oktoberfest Brisbane have been specially selected for their sound quality and pleasant drinking in South-East Queensland’s warm Spring weather.
German equals sausages. We all know this. So where are the best ones? The ones we can eat for breakfast, lunch or dinner. This is the real question we need answers to.
Götzinger is a go-to for sausage excellence boasting over 120 years experience, spanning generations, and is an integral Festival Partner. They can also be found all year round in their Götzinger smallgoods kitchen located in Yatala. This family-run enterprise is known for consistently producing the finest quality European smallgoods in Queensland and prides itself on its impressive heritage. Looking for internally-sourced fresh produce and ingredients? Then these guys are your sausage people and they aim to give their customers a true continental experience.
When you head to Oktoberfest, make sure you leave room to sample some of their delicious products including the legendary Dutch roast pork, cheese kransky, and their award-winning sausages. There are rumours that their range of continental smallgoods is the finest in the land.
Then there's the German Sausage Hut — from mouth-watering debreciner, Bratwurst, cheese kransky and frankfurters, all served with sauerkraut in a roll, you won't find a finer sausage anywhere. Owner Richy Windt takes his sausages seriously, and after you take a bite, you'll see why.
That's not Richy's only contribution to Oktoberfest, either — you'll also be able to catch him at the Potato Barn, where he'll be slinging delicious potato dishes with German, Austrian, Hungarian and Australian flavours.
K&K Schnitzels will bring the haus down
Last year there were 2000 schnitzel burgers eaten at K&K Schnitzel/Burger-Haus last year. This seems like a good indication that there is something delicious going on at this food stall. So make sure at this year’s Oktoberfest Brisbane, you pay them a visit and sample the traditional Austrian and German cuisine from chicken schnitzels, Weisswurst with pretzels, to a huge selection of burgers, Leberkäse, goulash soup, crumbed fish and a selection of dips and salads.
One of the most popular eateries at the Festival, there is a tasty treat for everyone. Before you fill up with beer, you must try the very impressive Oktoberfest Burger (200g prime ground beef, bacon, Edam cheese, lettuce, tomato, red onion, homemade pesto mayo, smoky BBQ sauce and sausage crown). Can something have too much flavour? We don’t think so. Need convincing? Then grab a scrumptious pork belly braised in sauerkraut with paprika, sour cream and sourdough bread.
Born and bred in Austria, K&K’s Wolfgang Kaspar, with his signature moustache (keep an eye out for him this year!) trained at Vienna’s famous Sacher Hotel and brought his skill and love of the finest Austrian cuisine to Brisbane. He is dedicated to creating delicious dishes and is an integral part of the ‘food family’ at Oktoberfest Brisbane.
Well-known and much-loved German baker Wolfgang Kelke (the man behind The King of Cakes) is back again for another year. And our tastebuds rejoice. Born in Bavaria and a trained master baker and pastry chef, Wolfgang moved to Brisbane and wanted to share his love of German breads and cakes and we are ever so grateful.
For the entire duration of the festival, Wolfgang and his King of Cakes stall will be catering to the crowds with their sweet fare. On offer will be decadent desserts including Black Forest cake, Bavarian cheesecakes, apple strudels, giant love-heart gingerbreads, Viennese chocolate cake, jam-filled donuts, Bee Sting slice and chocolate éclairs,. Look for ‘the King’ in the ‘Marktplatz’ (Market Square) or just follow your nose.
Lebkuchenherz, small gingerbread hearts which are traditionally worn around your neck, like giant edible necklaces, and are taken home by many at the end of the festival will also be available this year. Who doesn’t love tasty accessories? Plus the gingerbread hearts are decorated with German phrases such as Ich Liebe Dich (I love you) and come strung with a ribbon. Too cute.
The love of your (driving) life
Attention lovers of automotive excellence and car buffs, we know that even though you will be drooling over all the mouth-watering food and quenching your thirst with German beverages, your focus and real reason for coming to Oktoberfest Brisbane 2014 is the cars.
On Sunday October 19, festival visitors can feast their senses on an appealing range of all-German automobiles, proudly displayed by their owners from all around South-East Queensland.
Autofest 2013 was such a resounding success that it’s back with an even bigger and better line-up planned for this year. Whether it’s the latest in dazzling technology or a breathtaking vintage classic, there’s sure to be something on four wheels to pique your interest and keep you occupied. Come and join the admiring audience of other German automobile afficionados at this special annual event. Autofest is included in the final Sunday admission to the German Festival, so make sure you don’t miss this unique attraction: gates open at 11:00AM and close at 8:00PM (last entry at 7:00PM).
And for those looking for a romantic partner. The team behind Oktoberfest Brisbane think you might even meet the German love of your (driving) life.
Munchner Buam – a band of musical brothers
Six blokes, a dozen arms, legs and musical instruments, and more than 140 years of Oktoberfest experience between them – is there anything these boys can’t play, blow, strum, stomp, slap, wiggle, flap, fly or swim?
Performing at Oktoberfest since 2008, the members return year after year. As the band says, “We’ve developed long and great friendships in Brisbane over the years, and it’s wonderful to see how Oktoberfest Brisbane grows – each year the visitors return and love hearing us play. The atmosphere is incredible and it’s always so much fun to play to a tent full of people.”
And full of people it most definitely is. On the Saturdays, expect to watch the band play with close to 9000 others. One of the band explained, “That’s comparable to – and even a bit more than – an average Oktoberfest Munich tent, which holds around 7,000 people. Each of us who have been coming to Brisbane since 2008 are amazed at the increase in visitors we experience each year – I think the total in 2013 was more than 36,000 visitors over the two weekends of the Brisbane festival.”
And with such huge crowds, it’s surprising the boys don’t get nervous. Until you realise that between them they have, “almost 50 years’ experience at Oktoberfest Munich between us, to that you can add another 30 years of German folk festivals we have played – and another 60 years of making German music for audiences elsewhere.”
They’ve played on every continent of the world, except South America and Antarctica as well as the three largest festivals in Germany (that’s Munich, Stuttgart and Hamburg). And as they list some of the most amazing places they’ve played (from France and Spain to Taiwan and Thailand. Even Angola and Siberia!), you get a sense that this band is universally loved.
Dressing for it at Schnucki
If you’re planning on experiencing everything that Oktoberfest Brisbane has to offer, it’s time to think about your Dirndl or Lederhosen.
Schnucki Dirndl and Lederhosen is your fashion destination for everything Trachten (that’s German traditional costumes) with lots of new choices arriving daily. The only authentic Dirndl and Lederhosen shop in Australia, Schnucki only joined the Oktoberfest family in 2013, and almost instantly sold out. These authentic creations are sure to be in hot demand again this year, so best you don’t leave it to the last moment! You wouldn’t want to be caught without your Lederhosen.
In Germany there’s been resurgence in Lederhosen for men and Dirndls for the ladies – and not only at festival time. With exquisite designer Dirndls available, German girls have taken to wearing their one-of-a-kind outfits for many occasions, including parties, weddings or just a night out with friends. Could this become an Australian fashion choice as well?
Plus Schnucki also has a great range of men’s traditional German shirts as well as Lederhosen to suit every bloke. There is even a cheeky shorter version (Plattler) for all those gentlemen who want to show a bit of leg! The little ones won’t miss out either as there are dainty Dirndls and Lederhosen for children, so they can enjoy the full Festival spirit too (minus the beer drinking of course).
For the serious sweet tooths
Festival partner, The Organic Cotton Candy Co., offers an array of amazingly sweet treats. If you like it sweet, then you’ll love it here. Manager and owner, Bianca Wilms has combined her love of European sweets including strawberries dipped in Belgian chocolate, the finest traditional German liquorice and an film favourite with past festival-goers - the fairy floss (spun with certified organic raw sugar and certified organic flavours).
Organic. That makes it (almost) healthy right? The fresh, organic cotton candy comes in three fabulous flavours: strawberry, vanilla bean and maple syrup!
Need gluten-free options? Come and try her gluten-free gourmet nougat in five different flavours and gluten-free rose Turkish delights. If there was any place in the world that was sure to love chocolate frozen bananas, it would have to be Brisbane. And last year this was proved true beyond a doubt. Or perhaps the traditional German Almonds or the HUGE Belgian chocolate fountain are more your thing.
Oh and did we mention the home baked Gingerbread creations, also available in gluten free? You can even take home your very own Oktoberfest Gingerbread family! Who wouldn’t love a Gingerbread family?
One of the best aspects about this sweet treat tent is that The Organic Cotton Candy Company produced the first Organic Cotton Candy in Australia, which was developed from Bianca’s own recipe. So make sure you get there and try it for yourself.
If anyone has ever commented on your fabulous facial follicles, then you must head to Oktoberfest Brisbane and enter their second annual Beardmeister Competition.
Held on Friday October 17, Beardmeister was a hotly-contested addition to the line-up of Oktoberfest Brisbane entertainment when it debuted in 2013 – and past entrants left last year swearing they’d be back with a bigger beard than ever. Presented in association with the Beard Alliance and Gold Coast Facial Hair Club, this real crowd-pleaser honours a long tradition of beard and moustache appreciation, from Germany and Alpine Europe to South East Queensland.
There are beard and moustache championships held around the world, with judging across no less than 17 internationally-defined categories. This competition however, only focuses on three and beard and moustache experts from the Gold Coast Facial Hair Club will judge each competitor in these categories. But your voice will be heard too as the Oktoberfest Brisbane audience will have its say in voting for the ‘festival favourite’ and an overall Grand Champion will then be judged.Categories include
Natural Moustache -A category for purists. This emphasises moustaches au naturel. Styled, yes, but no fancy products allowed.
Natural Full Beard - Just like the Natural Moustache, but with the beard integrated, grown and tenderly nurtured to perfection. A must-see for lovers of facial hair!
Freestyle -Letting creative and fashion flair run free, competitors can go wild use whatever it takes to style and gel their beards/moustaches into amazing works of facial art.
All entrants must be over 18 on competition day and finalists will receive prizes, acclaim beyond their wildest dreams and a perpetual Trophy for the Grand Champion.