Friday, May 6, 2011

#62: Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh - Chuck E. Cheese for Adults

The Best Place to Celebrate Oktoberfest All Year Round

We are no strangers to the glories of Hofbrauhaus. Ever since our first trip, we've been pining to get to the Tapping of the Keg, a celebration that occurs on the first Wednesday of each month when the Hofbrau Seasonal Bier is introduced.

We arrived around 6:30pm. Faced with a 45 minute wait for a table in the Great Hall, we opted instead to sit at the bar. Michelle ordered her German staple food, Jagerschnitzel, while Emily opted for the "lighter" meal of Kartoffel Suppe (creamy potato soup) with potato pancakes, applesauce and sour cream on the side.

Around 6:45, we noticed a line was forming along the outside of the Great Hall. Emily offered to save our seats while Michelle waited in line for the keg to be tapped. Right at 7:00, the new keg of May bier (Maibock) let in a parade of people, including the polka band. Some held steins, some held flags, and everyone smiled like it was Christmas morning.

The parade wove in and around each row of tables before making its way to the front of the room. The brewmaster spoke briefly about Maibock before introducing the honorary keg-tapper, an editor of a local magazine. We sang along to a few "German" songs and then, at the height of anticipation, the keg was tapped! People cheered and the beer started flowing.

Lessons learned:
1. If you want a table, you must arrive between 5:00 and 5:30pm. Reservations are not accepted.
2. The line forms early, as there is a limited supply of free beer from the new keg.
3. The Jagerschnitzel is always a win. Substitute the veggies for fries if you aren't "green."
4. Contrary to popular belief, "tika-toka, tika-toka, oy-oy-oy" is not German, per our new (real) German friend.

4 down, 361 to go.

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