The Best Oktoberfest Beers in Madison (2022)
School has started, the days are breezy, and the nights are cool. In our world, that only means one thing:
It’s time to dig in the back of the closet for our lederhosen.
Some of the largest Oktoberfest celebrations in the world happen in Wisconsin. It’s a great excuse to exercise our festive spirit and enjoy the good weather. All the local Oktoberfest events won’t happen until late September. But many Madison breweries have released their special Oktoberfest brews. So of course, we had no option but to try them all and report our findings.
Add these breweries to your Oktoberfest bucket list:
This Marquette/ Willy Pub is right off the local bike path. It’s a fun stop for a beer and a bite. At 6.4%, the Stackenblochen Oktoberfest Lager at Working Draft will make you forget your troubles pretty quickly.
Delta Beer Lab
The lab tried a new experiment this year, and the result is a huge success. Their Oktoberfest Lager is somehow both malty and fruity. There’s even a slightly spicy taste to the pallet. The brew is both classic and original at the same time.
Karben4 dares you to resist jumping into a freshly raked pile of leaves after consuming their annual “Oaktober” brew. The ale is created in a whiskey-soaked American Oak cask, and the experience is delightful. There are slight toffee notes, with an aftertaste of freshly baked bread.
Great Dane Pub
Great Dane has achieved a lighter, sweeter Oktoberfest lager this year. It has medium-bodied hops and heavy malts.
Capital Brewery went heavy on the malts this year. The brew is extremely rich, and pairs perfectly with a soft pretzel.
Hop Haus Brewing
Hop Haus is the best place to grab an Oktoberfest beer in Fitchburg. Their “Let’s Fest” lager goes down easily. It’s crisp, clean, and malty, and will get you in the festival mood.
The Lone Girl
Lone Girl’s Oktober brew is a little different. So much so that they named it “Oktoberish”. It features classic German malts but is made with ale yeast instead of lager yeast. It’s a bright and cheery beer that tastes great on a sunny day.
Why did we start celebrating Oktoberfest?
The first Oktoberfest happened in Munich, Germany in 1810. The festival celebrated the marriage of the crown prince of Bavaria to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen. The festivities lasted five days and included:
- An agricultural fair
- Food and drink
- Horse having
The celebration was such a hit, that the city decided to make it an annual event.
In America, we now celebrate Oktoberfest the same way we celebrate St. Patricks Day or Cinco de Mayo holidays. But Oktoberfest is extra special in Wisconsin. 42% of Wisconsinites have German heritage. It’s a way to celebrate ancestral traditions. And, of course, it’s always a good time!
Mark your calendars for Madison’s Oktoberfest Events!
Thirsty Troll Brew Fest- September 11, 2022
Beer lovers from all over the mid-west travel to the small town of Mount Horeb for the annual Thirsty Troll Fest. Live music and beverage sampling will keep you energized throughout the day. Oktoberfest-themed games and crafts are always a laugh. Make pretzel jewelry or compete in the annual Masskrugstemmen contest and see how long you can hold a full stein.
Wauktoberfest- September 17-19, 2022
If you only go to one Oktoberfest event this year, make it Wauktoberfest. The celebration has a jam-packed itinerary of fun. Highlights include:
- Sausage Shuffle 5K
- Blessing of the Beer
- Chicken Dance Contest
- Sauerkraut Eating Contest
- Brat Toss
- Pop-up Market
- Dachsund Dash
Essen Haus Oktoberfest- September 18
Essen Haus’ event is less of a festival… and more of a party! Live polka music and dancing will be rocking the haus from noon til 8:00 pm. Food and drinks will be constantly flowing. Don’t forget to wear classic german attire!
Fall Beer Taste- September 18, 2022
Sun Prarie will host this tasting event. Over 20 local Sun Prarie businesses will be pouring samples of Oktoberfest beers, ales, and cider. The event will take place on Main Street, in the heart of the village. Tickets are only $35!
Hometown Brewdown- September 25, 2022
Games, bouncy castles, and beer. What more could you ask for? Verona’s Oktoberfest event will take place in Hometown USA Community Park. Get tickets here.
Puptoberfest- September 26, 2022
The last Oktoberfest event of the season will serve up a giant mug of cuteness. The event is a fundraiser for OccuPaws Guide Dogs. It’s a (free!) dog-friendly event that will include live music, face painting, a dog show, and a raffle.