The city of Munich on Friday distanced itself from apparent plans to hold an Oktoberfest event in Dubai.
Officials in the southern German city particularly took issue with media reports that implied the official festival was “moving” elsewhere this year.
“Oktoberfest is a Munich original and takes place exclusively in Munich,” the city statement read.
“The organizer’s plans for the event in Dubai, which have now been made public, are being carried out neither with the participation nor with the consent of the city of Munich,” the statement added.
Clemens Baumgärtner, the man in charge of organizing the Munich Oktoberfest, said although there was only a slim chance that the festival will be able to take place this year due to the pandemic, the idea of moving it to Dubai was “absolutely absurd.”
“We will explore all our legal options to protect Munich’s Oktoberfest,” he told German news agency dpa.
The business associations and groups in charge of providing beer, food and entertainment for the Oktoberfest in Munich said they knew nothing about the festival in Dubai.
“I don’t know anyone who’s going there,” the head of Munich theatrical association, Peter Bausch, told dpa.
Reports on Thursday about an Oktoberfest in Dubai sparked confusion and wry remarks from social media users in Germany — including jokes about wearing lederhosen in the desert.
The as-yet-to-be-confirmed event is being organized and promoted by Charles Blume, who helps organize the Berlin Christmas market, as well as former Munich restaurateur Dirk Ippen, who now lives in Dubai.
The Dubai Oktoberfest seeks to mirror its namesake with dozens of beer tents, food stands, attractions and rides. The event boasts a celebrity attendee lineup including Arnold Schwarzenegger and Pamela Anderson.
The event is slated to take place from early October through the end of March 2022 — running parallel to the World Expo in Dubai.
Last year’s Oktoberfest in Munich was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Beer gardens are more popular than ever during this coronavirus summer as they offer plenty of fresh air and space. These days you can find beer gardens all over Germany, but they were created in Bavaria at the beginning of the 19th century. Back then, brewers served their beer straight from the cooling cellars along the banks of the river Isar. They set up simple tables and benches for guests.
Germany is a beer country — and that’s a fact. Using only four ingredients, German brewers have managed to create over 5,500 brands of beer. And that number is growing because every week, a new beer is released on the market. But Germany manages quantity as well as quality: It’s the fifth-largest beer brewing nation in the world. China is in first place.
In the Ruhr area it’s known as a Trinkhalle, in Mainz it is called a Büdchen, and in Berlin it goes by the name of Späti. These neighborhood kiosks sell newspapers, tobacco, sweets, and usually beer. What began more than 150 years ago as a place to sell water, now serves as an extension to city dweller’s refrigerators, because the kiosk is never far away and almost always open.
Berlin’s corner pubs, like the Willi Mangler in the Schönefeld district, are a part of German beer history. They have also become something of a cult. The mix of stuffy air, no nonsense food and a crowd of regular bar flies is what makes them so charming. Tourists rarely venture here, but residents of the neighborhood come to enjoy their after-work beer — freshly poured and unbeatably cheap.
Beer puts football fans in a festive mood or consoles them when their team loses. Well, in normal times. But the coronavirus has also changed that. The new Bundesliga season is scheduled to start on September 18, possibly even with an audience. However, there will be a strict ban on alcohol in the stadiums. So there will be no more beer-fuelled songs from the fans.
Funfair stalls, brass bands, and “Schlager” music are the main ingredients of a traditional German festival. A challenge to get through unless you consume plenty of beer. Well at least until COVID-19 arrived. Even Germany’s biggest folk festival can’t take place this year; the Oktoberfest in Munich has been canceled, like so many other folk festivals.
Whether wedding celebration, exhibition opening or hanging out in the park — beer in Germany is always an appropriate beverage for almost any occasion and may also be legally consumed in public. For a long time, it was considered a man’s drink, but now beer is the most popular alcoholic beverage among 19 to 24-year-olds — men and women alike.
In Bavaria, where the German Beer Purity Law was adopted in 1516, beer has been an established part of life for centuries. Today, Bavaria has more than 600 breweries, more than any other state in Germany. In the Middle Ages, the breweries were firmly in the grip of monasteries. Some of these still exist, the oldest being Weltenburg Abbey (pictured) on the Danube.
Traditional breweries have now been joined by more experimental beer makers like Georg-Augustin Schmidt (pictured) and his micro-brewery “Braustil” in Frankfurt-am-Main. They produce small quantities of new, aroma-intensive varieties, often with organic ingredients and strong regional ties. The so-called craft beer scene is also booming in Hamburg and Berlin.
Those who are crazy about beer beyond drinking it will find more than 30 beer museums, beer hikes and beer brewing seminars in Germany. You can create your own beer at the “Grillakademie” craft beer seminar in Bochum. Participants also learn about the different varieties of beer as well as German brewing traditions and, of course, the German Beer Purity Law.
To mark International Beer Day on August 7, here’s a quick guide. From left to right: the Berliner Weisse goes in a bowl-shaped glass; Kristallweizen wheat beer in a tall glass; lager is served in a beer mug; followed by a short glass for the dark Altbier; the small, narrow glass for the Cologne Kölsch brew; the rounded glass for Pils beer; and finally the Bavarian half-liter beer mug. Cheers!