Where to Celebrate Oktoberfest Around DC

Gorge on schnitzel, check out a dachshund race, and lift a stein.

Photograph courtesy of The Boro/Lancer Photography

If you’ve never had the chance to witness a ceremonial keg tapping, Oktoberfest is the time. Here’s how local spots are celebrating the German festival. 

Atlas Brew Works
1201 Half Street, SE 
The Navy Yard location of this brewery is throwing a party celebrating the release of its Marzen Lager Festbier on Thursday, September 15. From 6 to 8 PM, guests can down bottomless beer, wine, and rail liquor. Tickets range from $30 to $40 and come with a souvenir stein.

Wunder Garten
1101 First St., NE
Celebrate the eighth annual Oktoberfest at one of DC’s great destinations for German beer. The keg-tapping ceremony on Friday, September 16 will be followed by several events  over the next few weeks. Sunday Yappy Hour turns into Dogtoberfest until Monday, October 10. Folk musicians and DJ’s will appear on Fridays nights. And don’t miss PRIDEtober events happening on Saturday, September 17 and Thursday, October 6. Expect beers from some of the oldest breweries in Germany, non-stop entertainment, and lots of German food.

Photograph courtesy of Wunder Garten.

The Boro
8350 Broad St., Tysons
Head to the Sandlot Tysons for themed crafts, outdoor games, a glitter tattoo station and, of course, festive food and drink on Saturday, September 17. Visitors can also check out a polka concert from the TKO Band.  The free event runs from 2 to 5 PM, but make sure to register here. The first 150 people to arrive will receive a free commemorative stein.

Otherhalf Brewing DC
1401 Okie St., NW
Don’t miss your shot at limited edition tees, exclusive brews, and Oktoberfest steins at the Ivy City outpost of this NYC Brewery. On Saturday, September 17, patrons can expect German-style beers on tap, hoisting competitions, food, entertainment, and more.

1309 Fifth St., NE
Union Market’s rooftop bar will host Lawntoberfest, which kicks off on SaturdaySeptember 17. On Saturday, September 24, an Oktoberfest party features grilled brats and pretzels, music from DJ Lemz (4 to 7 PM), stein-hoisting, and a variety of local festbiers. Monday night trivia at 7 PM will take on an Oktoberfest theme through Monday, October 3. And look for live music from 6 to 8 PM on Thursday, September 22 and Thursday, September 29. All events are free to attend.

The Midlands 
3333 Georgia Ave., NW
This Park View beer garden and sports bar will launch its beer and food specials on SaturdaySeptember 17. There will be specialty brews, $12 steins, three different hoisting competitions, and prizes. Also, sample local Oktoberfest beers alongside their German counterparts. The festivities run through Monday, October 3.

Cafe Berlin 
322 Massachusetts Ave., NE
Step into this Capitol Hill German dining room for its 38th annual Oktoberfest celebration. The festivities, including a special dinner menu, begin on Saturday, September 17. There are Bavarian brunches on select Sundays through Sunday, October 16. And on Saturday, September 24 and Saturday, October 8, look for pig roasts from noon to 2 PM. Any customers that show up in head-to-toe Bavarian attire can expect complimentary schnapps.

Dacha Beer Garden
1600 Seventh St., NW & 79 Potomac Ave., SE
At noon on Saturday, September 17, stop by the Shaw location of this beer garden for a ceremonial keg tapping. Then, shoot over to the Navy Yard branch for an afternoon of Bavarian-style merriment. In addition to beer and food there will be a live performance from Manuela Horn (of America’s Got Talent). The fun continues throughout the next few weeks with more music, a German spelling bee, and a pretzel-eating contest. Anyone who shows up in costume will receive a free pint from the traditional keg.

Photograph Courtesy of Dacha Beer Garden

Old Town Pour House
212 Ellington Blvd., Gaithersburg 
Starting on Saturday, September 17, this spot for craft brews will debut a selection of German-themed dishes along with beers celebrating the season. On the menu: currywurst, pork schnitzel and crispy pork-belly spaetzle.

Prost DC
919 Fifth St., NW
The festivities at this Mount Vernon Triangle German spot kick off on Saturday, September 17 with a ceremonial wooden keg tapping, then will continue through the first half of October. Puptoberfest, where dogs can score puppy-themed prizes and treats, happens on Monday, September 19. On Thursday, September 22, the Pfanner Apfelfest celebrates German hard cider. Other events include live music and stein-hoisting contests.

300 Tingey St., SE
There are seven German-inspired beers being pulled for the Oktoberfest bash at this Navy Yard beer destination on Saturday, September 17. Buy a large format beer, and you’ll get a limited-edition mug. Stay for live indoor and outdoor Oom-pah music  and Bavarian snacks.

German-American Heritage Museum
719 Sixth St., NW
The German-American Heritage Museum is teaming up with the International Club of DC on Friday, September 23 for an evening of German beer, food, and live Alpine folk music. The event starts at 6:30 PM and tickets range from $65 to $85. For an additional $20, you can learn to polka and waltz.

Bronson Bierhall
4100 Fairfax Dr., Arlington
This Ballston beer spot’s party on Saturday, September 24 includes a tasting of beers from Weihenstephaner, Port City, and Paulaner. The staff will kick things off with a traditional wooden keg tapping, and there will be live music all day. Tickets range from $16 to$48 and the party runs from 11 AM to midnight.

The Great Oktoberfest DC
1880 Second St., SW
Project DC Events is hosting one of the District’s most ambitious Oktoberfest events next to Audi Field on Saturday, September 24. General admission guests can partake in a three-hour, unlimited beer tasting, then check out games, music, and a selection of food trucks. VIP ticket holders get another hour of beer tasting and extra booze. The event runs from 3 to 7 PM. Tickets range from $45 to $60.

The Wharf
101 District Square, SW
This year, the Southwest DC neighborhood plays host to a whole weekend of Oktoberfest activities. On Friday, September 30, drop by for free polka lessons on Transit Pier. On Saturday, October 1, celebrate the 10th annual Wiener 500 Dachshund Dash. On Sunday, October 2, see if you’ve got what it takes to win the afternoon stein hoisting competition. And all weekend long, celebrate with costumes, Sam Adams Oktoberfest beer, and Bavarian specials from participating restaurants.

Vienna Oktoberfest
131 Church St., NE, Vienna
The Virginia suburb has put together a roster of outdoor performances and activities, all happening on Saturday, October 1 at three different stages along historic Church Street. In addition to beer and food, there will be German dance music, performances from local organizations, and children’s activities set up in the Town Green. The free festival begins at 11 AM and ends at 7 PM.


Peter Njoroge
Editorial Fellow