Halloween is a week away, but beer lovers are getting their treats early as a number of events coincide this weekend.
Brewery Birthday Bash
Courtyard Brewery (1020 Erato St.), part of the city’s growing ranks of micro breweries, marks its first anniversary on Saturday (Oct. 24) and will celebrate with a day-long beer festival and food truck rally.
The brewery, built into a one-time garage in the Lower Garden District, will have multiple pouring stations inside and outside to dispense more than 50 different beers, including 14 of its own alongside product from other craft brewers around the country. Many will be rare and specialty beers.
Food for sale during the day includes cochon de lait prepared from hogs raised on Courtyard Brewery’s own spent brewing grain. Proceeds from these sales benefit Hogs for the Cause and its programs supporting families dealing with pediatric cancer.
The event is from 10 a.m.-‘til, with live music from 2-9 p.m. Admission is free. See a list of beers and other event details here.
Beer Garden Debut
Saturday is also the grand opening of Tchoupitoulas Beer Garden (840 Tchoupitoulas St.), a new bar in the Warehouse District designed for an indoor, year-round Oktoberfest feel.
Spread across a brick-lined space, trimmed with Bavarian banners and awnings, Tchoupitoulas Beer Garden has a pair of bars pouring a mix of local and imported beers, a kitchen serving bratwurst, pretzels and other traditional German street food and beer garden style benches and tables.
Taking a cue from festivals, Tchoupitoulas Beer Garden encourages customers to buy tokens at the door to exchange for drinks and food, though there’s also a full bar accepting cash and cards. Ping pong, foosball and darts are all part of the program too.
The grand opening on Saturday is from 6-10 p.m. and the event doubles as a benefit for the nonprofit teaching restaurant Cafe Reconcile.
Last Call at Oktoberfest
Meanwhile, this Friday and Saturday is the last weekend for this year’s edition of the Deutsches Haus Oktoberfest, the largest local celebration of Bavarian culture and German heritage.
The beer tents pour 18 different brews by the pitcher, in plastic commemorative steins and in smaller vessels. Most are German imports, though this year the local 40 Arpent Brewing Co. of Arabi has supplied a special Oktoberfest-style Marzen beer for the event.
This weekend, platters of sauerbraten (a German pot roast) join the array of schnitzel, sausage, pretzels and other traditional foods for sale. Bands perform throughout the day and Saturday brings the return of the event’s “Dachshund Dash,” an annual race of the adorable dogs, scheduled from 3:45-5 p.m.
Held in Kenner’s Rivertown, the family-friendly fest continues Friday (Oct. 23) from 4-11 p.m. and Saturday (Oct. 24) from 1-11 p.m. Admission is $6 (free for children 12 and under).
Proceeds from Oktoberfest help support a building campaign for a new Deutsches Haus clubhouse (and future home for Oktorberfest celebrations), which is planned for Moss Street along Bayou St. John. Construction is slated to begin next year, with the building expected to be ready by late 2017.
Follow Ian McNulty on Twitter @IanMcNultyNOLA.