Travel notes, reviews and useful tips

Oktoberfest in Yokohama

The Oktoberfest has come to town! Yey! Several of these are held around Japan in October: the one in Yokohama is the nicest of them all :) I say this because the venue is at the Yokohama Akarenga-soko, red-bricked warehouses turned event complex. These are historical buildings completed during the turn of the 20th century. What could be a more appropriate venue for this most famous and delightful festival? :) (Continued after the Japanese summary)

横浜オクトーバーフェスト2012

オクトーバーフェストは今年も横浜にやってきました!開催10年目ですが、開催場所は赤レンガ倉庫という歴史的な建物で、雰囲気的にもアクセス性にも素晴らしいところです。約80種類のビールが販売され、もちろん、ビールに相性抜群の料理も種類が豊富です。なお、本場のドイツ・オクトーバーフェストのようにメインテントの中でのドイツから来たバンドの生演奏も楽しめ、みんながワイワイして盛り上がります。私たちは平日の夜に行ってきましたが、晴れたおかげで外にあるベンチでビールを飲みながら楽しく過ごしました。仕事帰りのサラリーマンが多く、仕事の疲れを吹っ飛んだでしょう。

今年の開催は、10月14日までですので、ビールを飲める首都圏にいる方、是非足を運んでください。全国の様々な場所でオクトーバーフェストが開催されているようですが、横浜は日本のビール発祥の地ということでやはり特別な感じがします^^

The mother festival in Bavaria, Munich, Germany runs from late September to early October. It’s been going on since 1810! Here in Yokohama, it’s only the 10th anniversary (since 2003). But seeing how popular it is with the locals, as well as foreign residents, I’ll bet it will continue to be held here for the next hundred years :)

This year 2012 the festival is from September 28 to October 14. We went there on a weekday night. And what a fun night it turned out to be!

Space for Two, or Two Hundred

The area was divided into several spaces. It seems the organizers have endeavored to give things the look of the Bavarian version, with the pointy-shaped tents and striped banners.

The collage above shows the inside of the main tent. That’s where the stage was for the performers. The entire tent was lined with food and drink stalls. It was the most crowded area, and if it weren’t a nice, cool October night it would have been stifling, too.

So thank goodness for cool autumn nights! We settled for a bench outside the main tent. It was a lovely place to be on such a clear day: the sea was in viewing distance, and the full moon out in its full glory.

Beer & Food Galore

There were beer and food stalls inside as well as outside the main tent. So many types of beer, but since I couldn’t drink them all I had to pick one. It was hard!

Among the beer choices were the four official German beer houses at the Munich festival. Since Yokohama is the home of the beer industry in Japan, several local brands were also available. That made for a total of 80 types of beer!

“Well, drink half a dozen then”, you might be thinking. But I can’t hold beer down well and so could drink only a glass. I had to make the “right” choice! I ended up picking one that used a glass looking like a volumetric flask from a chemistry experiment. It had a creamy, smooth taste. Not too bitter: my kind of beer! :)

Of course, a beer festival wouldn’t be complete without the requisite sausages :D I threw in some waffles and edamame to the mix.

Music and Singing

Of course, it wouldn’t be an authentic Oktoberfest if there was no live band performance. The organizers flew in the Woho & Kalendar Band. They looked really cool!

The Woho and Kalendar Band performing at the Yokohama Oktoberfest 2012

The Woho and Kalendar Band performing at the Yokohama Oktoberfest 2012

The band led the crowd into rousing renditions of the toast song. I don’t know what it means, but it goes like this:

Ein Prosit, Ein Prosit der Gemutlichkeit.
Ein Prosit, Ein Prosit der Gemutlichkeit.
Eins, Zwei, Drei, g’suffa! (Prost!)

I know the lyrics because they were conveniently printed inside the pamphlet handed to us once we bought our tickets, so everyone could sing along :)

It was a huge party inside the main tent.

Aside from the toast song the German band kindly sang popular songs in Japan (think “Hey, Jude” by the Beatles). Everybody there was clapping and dancing and singing. A really fun night for everyone to forget life’s problems for an hour or two.

If you’re a beer drinker and meat eater, and can’t go to Germany any time soon, then this event is for you! We’ll make sure to go again next year :)

When to Go

We had only gone on a weekday night; as expected the crowd was made up of mostly people coming in after work. Many of them were in groups; there were also a bunch of couples out on a beer date. I saw two or three families with small kids, but that’s about it. Mostly it was sarariman (salaried employees) toasting away their troubles with a cold glass of beer :)

Prost!

Prost!

It was crowded inside the main tent, but outside there was space enough for everyone. All the benches were filled, but the turnabout was quick enough for everyone to have a seat.

I loved sitting outside and watching the crowds while the cool autumn breeze blew and the moon was shining bright. Had it been raining everyone would have squeezed in inside the main tent. For me checking the weather before going is of utmost importance to enjoy an outdoor festival like this.

Check out the link below for the band’s stage schedule.

How to Get There

横浜赤レンガ倉庫
JR・市営地下鉄「桜木町駅」より汽車道経由で徒歩約15分
JR・市営地下鉄「関内駅」より徒歩約15分
みなとみらい線「馬車道駅」または「日本大通り駅」より徒歩約6分
「みなとみらい駅」より徒歩約12分

The Yokohama Akarenga-soko is about 15 minutes on foot from the JR Sakuragicho or Kannnai station. On the Minatomirai Line’s Bashamichi station it is about a 6 minute-walk away.

There is an entrance fee of JPY 200.

I Would Love to Hear from You!

So, what do you think of this article? Please share your thoughts and opinions in the Comments section below.

この記事についてのご意見・ご感想を是非、お聞かせください!コメント欄↓に書きこんで頂けると幸いです!

External Links

Oktoberfest – official site of the mother event in Munich, Germany. 本場ドイツの公式サイト。
Yokohama Oktoberfest 2012 – official festival page of the Akarenga-soko, Yokohama’s event host. Contains food, drink and performance schedule info. 赤レンガ倉庫のオクトーバーフェスト特設ページ。出店店舗、メニュー、楽団演奏スケジュールなどの最新情報が記載されています。
Oktoberfest 2012 – information on other Oktoberfests held in Japan. The upcoming one is at Odaiba in Tokyo. 横浜以外の開催地情報が記載されています。10月はお台場にも開催。

Books to Consider

関連書籍

Other Articles on BC Discoveries

You just finished reading Oktoberfest in Yokohama. Please consider leaving a comment! This post is from the travel website, Beverly Claire Discoveries. If you are not currently reading this via discoveries.beverlyclaire.com, then this post may have been stolen or scraped from the Beverly Claire Discoveries site. Republishing this article in full or in part is a violation of Copyright Law (c)2010-2014, All rights reserved.


See other gifts available on Zazzle.




ソニーストア

Thailand Experiences

9 comments

  1. noritan /

    Ein Prosit, Ein Prosit der Germütlichkeit.
    Ein Prosit, Ein Prosit der Germütlichkeit.
    Eins, Zwei, Drei, g’suffa! ♪♪

  2. Looks fun! Thanks for the heads up. Will go Friday ;-)

    • beverlyclaire /

      Hey Cas! In a little while it will be TGIF :) Hope you’ll have tons of fun!

  3. They should give out half-shot samples (just one mouthful!). You could still get drunk just tasting every single one of them though so I guess that’s why they don’t do it.

    • beverlyclaire /

      One of the beer stalls was offering 4 small glasses for JPY 2,500. Since 1 large glass costs JPY 1,500 I wasn’t sure if it was a good deal. Anyway, I ended up choosing the one with the nicest-looking container :) Next time I go there I’ll try the one with the glass that’s shaped like a boot :)

    • don't think so /

      Nah, the reason they don’t give out samples is to bar freeloaders. You could just keep lining up for a “taste”. LOL

  4. 素敵なブログですね。赤レンガの中には、入ったことがないのです。
    英語が全く理解できない私にも、楽しめそうです。(^^)

    • beverlyclaire /

      ブログを見て素敵コメントを頂いてありがとうございます!赤レンガ倉庫の中は、天井の低い展示場や雑貨屋さん・カフェなどがありますが、普通だと思います^^ 私には煉瓦張りの外見が一番いいところだと思います^^ 

      英語ばかりの記事が多く、本当に申し訳なく思います。日本語での概要を少しずつ取り入れようとしていますが、やはり、完全な日本語版をいつか作りたいですね〜

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>