The long-awaited Oktoberfest season officially is here. Many bars, restaurants and retailers promote fall offerings starting in September to get a jump on consumer excitement for fall flavors like pumpkin spice, maple, cinnamon, ginger and apple cider.
Fall also is a prime season for many outdoor street festivals featuring music, food, dancing and, yes, beer. To inspire trial and tasting, many beer companies sponsor fall Oktoberfest events that feature their beers and logos on signage, plastic steins, T-shirts and more.
For example, Paulaner München and Moerlein Lagers & Ales were among the German-style ales on tap during a Labor Day weekend event in Cincinnati, while Hofbräuhaus was the featured beer at a German Day weekend event in Chicago’s Lincoln Square neighborhood. My adult Chicago Donauschwaben dance group, along with dance groups from across the country and Canada, wore traditional Bavarian dirndls and black tratchen (vests) and enjoyed performing for a clapping crowd.
Our group also danced twice at Rosemont, Ill.-based Hofbräuhaus, which traditionally hosts bands and dance groups during September and October, which likely helps boost on-premise sales.
As summer fades into fall, it’s likely that more consumers are switching their beverages to reflect the cooler days while also enjoying fall-inspired beverages when tailgating at football games or gathering at local restaurants and bars.