16 Oct Enjoy Oktoberfest in Barcelona
Enjoy Oktoberfest in Barcelona
Here at Flaherty’s we believe in celebrating festivals, and a festival devoted to beer is right up our alley. Willkommen to Oktoberfest! Time to enjoy Oktoberfest in Barcelona!
The world’s favourite festival has been held for over 200 years, and the first Oktoberfest was held in Munich in 1810 to celebrate the wedding of Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. For five days the citizens of Munich made merry with food, drink, dancing and generally having a lot of fun at the expense of the Royal purse. The main event was a series of horse races and the wedding festival was so successful that in true German efficient style, they decided to make it an annual event.
The next year saw the addition of an agricultural show, and in 1818 the first swings, fun fair rides, and carnival booths appeared. The festival has been held every year, cancelled only due to wars and cholera outbreaks.
By 1819, festival goers had a new attraction to whet their appetite. Like our own enterprising Peter Flaherty, local beer vendors began setting up stalls to sell their beer, including limited edition Oktoberfestbier, and the world’s first beer festival began to take shape.
By the late 1880s, the local breweries started to get serious and the beer booths and stands were transformed into large tents, giving more room to guests with each holding their own entertainment. The famous Schottenhamel tent, still run by the family of the same name and started as a small shack behind the Royal Tent in 1867, can now seat around 6,000 people. The original guests of this tent were students and soldiers, and the tent today is still popular
with students and a younger crowd, earning it the nickname ‘The Youth Tent’.
The festival officially starts in the Schottenhamel tent at high noon. The mayor of Munich is charged with ‘tapping’ the first keg, proclaiming “O zapft!” (“it’s tapped!”) followed by a 12-gun salute, signalling to all the other tents that drinking can commence. Prost!
In 1896 the Schottenhamel wanted to be the first tent to feature electric lights. They engaged a local electrical firm called J. Einstein et Cie for the project, and rumour has it the owner’s son, a young man named Albert Einstein was tasked with screwing in those first lightbulbs. We like to think young Albert had his first lightbulb moment here, proving forever the connection between beer and genius.
Although the original meaning of the festival is lost to history, the underlying spirit of good times, joy and happiness remains, and Oktoberfest is a now a traditional festival all over the world, including here in Barcelona.
Oktoberfest in Barcelona
The Barcelona Oktoberfest, or Fiesta de Cerveza, runs for 10 glorious beer-filled days from early to mid-October, but like the original Munich citizens, here at Flaherty’s we don’t ever want the fun to stop. To celebrate the spirit of the festival, our customers can enjoy our house beer Amstel for the whole month of October for only 3,50€ a pint.