Fall is right around the corner, which is a cause for celebration, don’t you think? My birthday is in October, so I consider the entire month a warm up for the holiday season. To kick off a month of festivities I figured why not throw an interactive Oktoberfest party? This one’s complete with authentic German fare, beer tasting and decor that’s oh-so-gut.
The key elements for any fabulous party are delicious food, beautiful decor, refreshing drinks, and great company. Even a casual affair such as this Oktoberfest beer tasting party deserves some festive flair, so I pulled out all the stops when it came to the details.
Beer, sausages and pretzels are the three musketeers of Oktoberfest, in my opinion. I assembled a German themed charcuterie board featuring several varieties of sausages as well as matching accoutrements, so my guests could sample a lot of different flavors. Any good charcuterie or cheese board starts with a beautiful platter. This one I chose has a gorgeous carved pattern that reminds me of fall foliage.
You can start by plating little extras in small dishes that are evenly spaced throughout the platter; think of creating a road map for your guests to follow so they will eventually be led to each item on your board.
Next, grill or warm your sausages or meat, cut them into bite-sized pieces, and arrange them around the other elements on your platter.
Finish the board with some natural garnishes that bring in the feeling of the season.
To round out the food at my Oktoberfest party, I simply used a boxed mix to bake up some authentic German-style soft pretzels, and served them in a natural wicker basket.
When it comes to decor, I love to play with patterns, textures and styles. I generally start with a color story, or an inspiration piece like the patterned table runner, and look for elements with unique details that amplify the overall look, like these faceted bubble glass vases.
Mixing patterns with solid colors brings visual interest, and natural elements like the wood handled flatware, and the wood basket and serving board keep the whole tablescape from becoming too fussy. Don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone. If you stick with 2-3 coordinating colors, the possibilities are limitless.
In my opinion, every great party needs to have at least one specialty drink. Since Oktoberfest is a holiday that revolves around beer, I served up individual beer tasting flights in festive, miniature beer glasses.
My guests were able to sample a variety of beer styles, without feeling like they had to commit to just one. It also served as an interactive and fun party activity. We were able to compare notes and pick our favorites at the end of the night.
The final key to a great party is the company. Invite your adventurous friends over for a German-themed food and drink sampling, and consider yourself officially warmed up for the start of the holiday season!