Oktoberfest OMGD Function at the Löwenbräu Keller 15 October 2015
A declaration of partiality. I do not like noisy restaurants, I detest crowds, and, although I am the Australian head of the Ordre Mondial des Gourmets Dégustateurs (OMGD), which is a specific section of the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs for members with a particular interest in wines, spirits, liqueurs and crafted beverages, I don’t normally drink beer.
Tobias, Camneron and Friends (Note the Tyrolean Hat)
So what am I doing at a table of 26, slap in the middle of a restaurant holding seemingly hundreds of noisy and enthusiastic patrons? And what is in the mind of the CEO of a peak body representing Australian winemakers sitting across from me as she gamely sips on a fairly ordinary Pinot Gris?
The reason of course is a celebration of Oktoberfest in Sydney at the iconic Löwenbräu Keller. This is an OMGD function organised by Tobias (resplendent in a Tyrolean Hat – which is Austrian as pointed out by the German nationals at our table) on behalf of our NSW Vice–Echanson, Sam.
A Vice-Echanson enjoying a crafted beverage
When we organise a Chaîne function we normally try to secure a private room or book out a restaurant but here we were in the middle of the horde as decreed by our Bailli who said that we had to enjoy the Oktoberfest ‘ambiance’.
Most of our table did exactly that – they had fun but, more importantly we all enjoyed the quality food and interesting Löwenbräu wines, sorry beers. If I were to be critical I suspect that I would say that there was too much meat, but this is Oktoberfest after all. The overall quality was to a high standard and the food was served with professionalism and enthusiasm. I also enjoyed the flight of beers… I really liked most of them.
We say in the Chaîne that we are about conviviality and this night was about exactly that. Good food, good company, good wines, sorry, beer and apple strudel for desert. What more could you want?
I actually cannot review the Apple Strudel because the CEO confessed later in the evening that she had driven in and so it was thus that the Echanson d’Australie and the CEO crept out into the Sydney night leaving the pulsating table to enjoy the hammering of nails into thick planks.
Random quotes on the night:
‘My mother is German so I get excited when I meet real German people.’ Guest when introduced to Gunter, our Bailli Honoraire NSW.
‘In Munich at the real Oktoberfest they only have Hähnchen – not this outrageous cornucopia of meats presented here.’ Ex German National member.
‘What was that? I can’t hear you!’ Any member at the table over 40.
All in all this was an enjoyable OMGD function that ticked all the right boxes. And any restaurant that precedes its platters of meats with a staff member banging a cow bell will always be up there in my estimation. A night certainly worth repeating.
Echanson d’Australie La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs