Celebrate Oktoberfest properly this year – by drinking beer at one of the biergartens in Detroit. The only requirement is having a grand time with a beer stein in hand, and if you want to dance the polka, even better. Oktoberfest in Detroit spans from traditional to atypical, and everything in between. Whether drinking from a boot, sitting under the trees or throwing one back among the animals, Detroit has a ton of different establishments and festivals that are perfect for Oktoberfest. The festivities begin on September 21 and last for 16 days, so you will have plenty of time to check out each of the best places to celebrate in the city.
1420 Van Dyke
Detroit, MI 48214
The best way to celebrate Oktoberfest is to experience the outdoors in a fresh way – make new friends, play board games under the trees and most importantly, drink beer. Tashmoo Biergarten pops up at different locations throughout the city and at events around town. Serving beer from Michigan breweries, this seasonal outdoor establishment combines European sensibilities with the spirit of Detroit, giving it a unique edge. This modern biergarten has acquired a strong following of passionate supporters in a short amount of time since its debut in autumn of 2011. Become part of the community that Tashmoo Biergarten creates by staying tuned into social media for the latest scoop about when and where this biergarten will strike again.
Zoo Brew at the Detroit Zoo
8450 West 10 Mile Road
Royal Oak, MI 48067
Date: Sept. 27, 2013
The Detroit Zoo will host a beer festival for the third year in a row. Celebrate Oktoberfest with polar bears, flamingos and primates while sipping on a variety of beer made by local artisan breweries from around the state. Live bands will provide music and a tram will provide a guided tour around the zoo grounds. Additional features include an exclusive talk with a zookeeper and access to special habitats at twilight. Every guest will receive tasting tickets that will allow them to sample 12 types of craft beer. This popular event sells out quickly, so don’t wait to order tickets.
Jacoby’s German Biergarten
624 Brush St.
Detroit, MI 48226
With a prime selection of German beer, Jacoby’s is a great spot to celebrate Oktoberfest. The ambiance is comfortable and the staff is charming. Located downtown since 1904, this biergarten is one of the oldest establishments in the city that is still in operation. Need some schnitzel to go with the brew? The search is over – Jacoby’s has traditional German entrees available, in addition to traditional American fare.
Dakota Inn Rathskeller
17324 John R. St.
Detroit, MI 48203
This authentic German establishment is a great place to visit if looking for a rousing Oktoberfest gathering in the city. With its traditional music and sing-alongs, this is a place your Oma would love just as much as your friends. During Oktoberfest, oompah bands perform under a tent while polka contests get the crowd going. From the bratwurst to the rouladen, Dakota Inn Rathskeller has an enticing selection of German favorites, not to mention the true draw of the occasion – beer.
215 North Main
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Go for the boot and stay for the quaint German ambiance. “Das Boot” is The Heidelberg’s claim to fame – a glass in the shape of a boot which can be filled with one or two liters of the lager or hefeweizen of your choice. The crowd contains a mix or regulars and students, and the place gets crowded as the evening wears on. The easy remedy for a packed bar is to check out one of The Heidelberg’s other levels – Alpine Dining on the top floor or the basement Poker Room for fun and games.
Michigan Brewers Octoberfest (partner event)
2369 Joslyn Ct
Lake Orion, MI 48360
1 – 6 p.m. Saturday, October 5
The event has featured more than 60 craft beers and ciders. Extracurricular activities include brewer Q+A, demonstrations and food vendors. Admission includes 9 beer sample tickets. Tickets are $30 at local Kroger stores or $35 online. Valid ID is required for entry and of course, you must be 21. More info
After receiving a BA in Photography from Savannah College of Art & Design, Nicole Wrona began working with a diverse range of musicians. In addition, she is a freelance writer for numerous publications. Her work can be found at www.metalleaves.com and Examiner.com.