The holiday of Oktoberfest, for many, can serve as a perfect excuse to indulge in extreme inebriation, all under the cover of German and Austrian culture. Yet this celebration of rich Teutonic history is one which still serves as a central theme of Oktoberfest, a holiday which embodies much more than beer stein worship. It’s a time to embrace German and Austrian culture as a whole, from the clothing, art and architecture to, yes…that glorious beer. Here are just a few suitable Bostonian options to celebrate Oktoberfest in the city.
170 Beacon St.
Boston, MA 02116
Located between Beacon and Clarendon streets in the city’s Back Bay area, the Goethe Institut in Boston serves as a German cultural center for the city, a meeting point for all things German and Austrian in town. The Goethe Institut is the place to hit for German language lessons on the academic side, while also serving as a meeting point for those seeking to dip their toes into the wine and food tasting scenes. These social settings are great introductory options for the uninitiated just entering their quest for German cultural knowledge; a high brow alternative to brew haus shenanigans!
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31-37 Stuart St.
Boston, MA 02116
Granted, it may seem strange at first to visit Chinatown in search of legit German cuisine, but Jacob Wirth’s reputation precedes itself as one of Boston’s most well regarded and recommended spots for German food. Cabbage, schnitzel, pretzels and sauerbraten are all on Jacob Wirth’s menu, alongside a fine selection of strong European beers, making this Chinatown spot a classy and under-the-radar spot for a Oktoberfest celebration, aided by a comfortable decor and atmosphere.
255 Washington St.
Somerville, MA 02143
This Somerville joint hits the spot in terms of German comfort food. It’s a relaxed bar and restaurant with an atmosphere similar to Jacob Wirth’s. Slow-cooked beef and a wide variety of bratwursts ensure that Bronwyn hits all the right spots for even the most demanding of German cuisine aficionados – even challenging the palate of those born and raised in the motherland – arriving armed with a sense of authenticity which is difficult to beat. Polish and Czech food is also on the menu here, a nicely rounded mix of culture and cuisine to please everyone this Oktoberfest.
611 Dorchester Ave.
Boston, MA 02127
Southie is the next Oktoberfest destination on the map, a Dorchester Avenue destination that also celebrates a well-rounded menu of Teutonic food and drink from not only Germany and Austria, but also from Poland; a nice, multicultural atmosphere which embraces the Oktoberfest spirit of unity, friendship and, of course, great cuisine. Cafe Polonia is more for those with experienced palates, as there is little service assistance available to those who don’t already know what they’re into. With most of the wait staff preferring to let their guests simply enjoy the experience as a whole, this advanced-level celebratory feel should prove just perfect for Oktoberfest veterans.
Baltic European Deli & Cafe
632 Dorchester Ave.
Boston, MA 02127
The Baltic Deli & Cafe is located a mere hop, skip and a jump away from Cafe Polonia in Southie, and serves as a home away from home for German, Austrian, Czech or Polish natives seeking to host their own Oktoberfest party in the privacy of their own pad. Sure, The Baltic Deli & Cafe has room for seating and dining, but this Dorchester Avenue spot also provides the means necessary from borscht, pierogi, brats and deli meats from across Europe to stiff spirits and beer to bring back home to celebrate with family and friends.
George Pacheco has been writing professionally about arts and entertainment for over a decade. A graduate of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, George currently resides in a humble New England home with his wife, cat and massive music and film collection. His work can be found at Examiner.com.