Oktoberfests (or, Why Drinking Beer Makes You a Better Person
People, just look at you. There you are with your cocktails, necking loudmouth soup as fast as you can hoist those tumblers. And you wine people, you’re no better, polishing your expensive, dusty bottles. Admit it: Though you avidly post pictures of your costly quaffs on Facebook, what you’d prefer to post is a screenshot of your stock portfolio, which would be way more expressive of how you’re living.
Ew. America, what you need is beer – good, plain beer. Beer is wholesome, it’s nutritious, and it has redeeming social value. You’ve all heard about Gin Lane, Hogarth’s famous 1751 print depicting nightmarish social decay in London under the sway of the historic Gin Craze? Buildings fell, babies tumbled, and carpenters pawned their tools for drink. Basically, the Gin Craze was the crack epidemic of its day but with way more britches and periwigs. Look closely: Gin Lane is a hoot, but what most people don’t know is that Gin Lane had a lesser known companion print, Beer Street (pictured above), in which civic order returns when London drinks beer.
While guzzling beer, London’s street paviors pave, the fish sellers sell, and the butchers hone their knives. One can imagine mothers as they return to nursing their babies (looking down sweetly, blasting the poor tots with beer breath) with milk heavily fortified by beer’s health-giving polysaccharides and folic acid. Folks, art history says that beer saves streets, buildings, and babies! And who are we to quibble with art history?
Today is October 1 and you know what that means. October is the month of Oktoberfests—redeem your rotten character by drinking beer all month long.
Look, this girl is wholesome!
Oktoberfest at Craftsman Ale House
September 24 – October 1 (that’s today!)
This is the last night of (from the site), “seven days of traditional Oktoberfest beers, food and music. It all starts with a ceremonial keg tapping. Plus, there will be contests and prizes all week. Trinken Bierï»¿, Dankeï»¿!!”
235 Harrison Ave, Harrison
(914) 630-7484; craftsmanalehouse.com
Oktoberfest at Lazy Boy Salooon
October 4 – 7 pm
From the site: ”Kicks off at 7pm on October 4th in the Saloon with a wide release of Oktoberfest/Marzen beers and finishes up with the White Plains Oktoberfest Party on the 7th when Mamaroneck Avenue is closed from 3 pm – 8 pm and we will be serving draught beers right on the street. White Plains Oktoberfest will also feature live music from Alpine Squeeze.”
154 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains
(914) 761-0272; lazyboysalooon.com
Oktoberfest at Harpers
October 6, 1 – 5pm
$55 per person (includes all-you-can-drink draughts, family-style small plates, and buffet)
The following comes from Harper’s (because I don’t presume to ask what you may or may not be able to get in your pants): “Sure, Oktoberfest is the biggest festival in the world. Yes, Oktoberfest lasts 16 days and is attended by 5 million people drinking 7 million liters of beer and dining on everything from Schweinebraten to Steckerlfisch. But so what? You’re American. And in America, you can fit it all into one awesome afternoon at Harper’s, because, at Harper’s, seasonal Captain Lawrence brews will flow like liquid gold, and our delicious buffet winks at you like Prince Ludwig winked at Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen back in 1810, when this whole shebang got started.
Yes, you can have it all. You can fit it in. You may not fit into your pants afterward; but we say again: so what?”
92 Main St, Dobbs Ferry
(914) 693-2306 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (914) 693-2306 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
White Plains Oktoberfest
October 7, 3 – 8 pm
Folks, it’s day drinking in the middle of the damned street! From the White Plains BID site: “’Ompa-pa bands’ will mean the start of our third annual Oktoberfest held on Sunday, October 7, on Mamaroneck Avenue between East Post Road and Maple Avenue. Join thousands of residents and visitors in the heart of Westchester’s greatest city. The festival will have German beers and food, with live entertainment. Music will be provided by Alpine Squeeze as well as a live DJ. Come and join all the fun! Participating are: Black Bear, Brazen Fox, Butterfield8, Elements, Hudson Grille, Lazy Boy Saloon, Lazy Lounge, Porter House, Ron Blacks, Wicked Wolf, and Party Line Rentals.”
4 – 11 pm
Music is FREE (though food and beer are available for purchase)
Look for beer by Peekskill Brewery, Crossroads Brewing Company, Newburgh Brewing Company, Bellwether Hard Cider, and Rushing Duck Brewing Co. Participating restaurants will be paired with local farms to offer great food – look for Tarrytown’s Village Dog, Polpettina, Birdsall House, the Hop, and more. For more info, location and a full list of participants, click here.
October 13 and 14, 1 – 11pm
Am I reading this correctly? Does this event promise a bouncy castle and drunk jousting? Yes, please! From the site: “We will be serving German beer and food outside all day including Spaten, Franziskaner, and the local Captain Lawrence Kolsch. Pig roast, bratwurst, and other German fare will also be available. Beer games, beer truck, can jam, corn hole, and jousting will be available for the young at heart and kids’ activities will include pumpkin decorating, jumping castle, face painting, carnival games, and DJ from 1 – 4 pm. Tables and chairs will be set up under the tent so festivities can continue rain or shine. Live music featuring Cutthroat Shamrock 8 – 11pm on Saturday and Marty Osterer’s MTJ Band 7 -10 pm on Sunday.”
25 Main St, Tuckahoe
(914) 793-0608; www.growlersbeerbistro.com
Cooktoberfest with The Cookery at Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
October 22, 7:30 pm
$60 for tickets (purchased in advance through Captain Lawrence or The Cookery). Includes food, music, and beer samples, and 12-ounce cups of beer are available for purchase.
People, it’s only the holy trilogy of Westchester cool (Captain Lawrence + The Cookery + The Jukebox Romantics) all together for one beery night of meat-fueled punk/ska mayhem. Do not miss this one. The DoughNation truck will be there, and the Cooktoberfest menu promises confit of baby back ribs, sloppy joes, and a “carnage station.” That’s a whole action station of carnage, folks—leave your karma home with the kids.
444 Saw Mill River Rd, Elmsford
(914) 741-2337; captainlawrencebrewingco.com
Oktoberfest at Sam’s of Gedney Way
October 25, 7 – 10pm
$49 per person, inclusive of food, drink, service, and tax
From the site, ”Captain Lawrence Ales and Sam’s Authentic German fare will be served in honor of Oktoberfest. Reservations are required.”
52 Gedney Way, White Plains
(914) 949-0978; www.samsofgedneyway.com
HotDate: 2nd Annual Taste Our Local Harvest at Westchester Country Club
Tuesday, October 9, 6pm
$60 per person
From the invitation: “…the halls of Westchester Country Club will be transformed into a thrilling fall harvest celebration as an impressive roster of over two dozen Westchester, Putnam Valley and Lower Connecticut farms, chefs, vendors, purveyors, and restaurants come together to offer tastings and pairings while benefiting three vital organizations (the Food Bank For Westchester, Slow Food Metro North, and the Chef Association of Westchester & Lower Connecticut).
Complete with life-size ice sculptures and tractors, at this tasting and networking event, the bounty of the region will be on display by pairing of local farmers and chefs who will prepare carefully chosen harvest, livestock, and poultry tastings. There will also be vendors of local spirits, beers, breads, cheeses, and other farm products at the event, which also aims to strengthen relationships and collaborations between local farms and the culinary community.
Tickets for the public can be purchased online at www.FoodBankForWestchester.org and the event is sponsored by the Food Bank for Westchester, Slow Food Metro North, and the Chef Association of Westchester & Lower Connecticut. Net proceeds from the event will have a direct impact on the good work of these like-minded not-for-profit organizations which share the mission to build the value of local agriculture through education, the distribution of fresh seasonal food to our diverse community, and the promotion of wellness through community and schoolyard food garden projects. Taste Our Local Harvest is also an opportunity for farmers and chefs to connect and form working partnerships to develop farm-to-table opportunities for Westchester/Putnam and lower Connecticut restaurants, schools, hospitals, country clubs, daycare centers, and nursing homes.
Currently confirmed farm and restaurant/chef pairings are: Hemlock Hill Farm (Cortlandt Manor) & Birdsall House/Chef March Walker (Peekskill, NY) and Sleep Hollow Country Club/Chef Michael Murray; I & Me Farm (Bedford, NY) & Restaurant North/Chef Eric Grabynowicz (Armonk, NY); Mobius Fields (Lewisboro, NY) & Slow Food Metro North/Chef Chris West; Longhaul Farm (Garrison, NY) and Fresh Company Catering (Garrison, NY); The Meadows Farm (Yorktown Heights, NY) and Peter Pratt’s Inn/Chef Jon Pratt (Yorktown Heights, NY); Purdy’s Farmer & the Fish (Purdys, NY), and Concierge Foods/Chef Marc Alvarez.” Hot Flash
Butterfield 8 is open!
The White Plains natives behind Mulberry Street (and, very soon, Lola’s) have quietly debuted a glitzy, new gastro-pub in downtown White Plains called Butterfield 8. Its original Manhattan outlet offers a long menu of democratic bistro, pub, and steakhouse standards, though we’re hoping that Butterfield 8’s new Executive Chef Matt Safarowic can spark things up a bit. You know Matt—he was part of The Cookery’s dastardly Cabal of Carnivorous Cooks, and was trained in the art of offal mayhem by none other than Chef David DiBari. While Butterfield 8’s official opening is slated for October 4, its doors are now open. Shhhh, don’t tell them I sent you.
EaterAlert: Tell us Your Favorite Burger!
We’re on the lookout for Westchester’s greatest burgers! Thanks to everyone who’s already emailed in to the EaterLine email@example.com with suggestions (we’ll be checking them all) and please, keep those burger suggestions coming!
HotPlate: Rigatoni Bolognese at Mulberry Street
Here is a happy union of grain, dairy, meat, and veg. Look for al dente tubes of chewy, resilient pasta enrobed in a sweet, delicately carnal sauce. The kicker is a lavish dollop of cool, tangy ricotta, giving this dish a yin-yang punch of hot and cold, veg and meat, and acid and fat. Yum. Just the thing to swipe up with bread when the last bite is gone.