If Monday’s autumn equinox, with its equal hours of light and dark, didn’t officially usher in the fall season for you, maybe some rain and bluster will. It definitely feels like summer is over, which isn’t all bad because that also means autumn eating experiences!
Autumn eating includes Oktoberfest, officially celebrated Sept. 21-Oct. 6. Many of you may already have noticed a few extra German-style treats in our markets. Whether it’s German-style meats, cheeses or beer, we have what you need to get an authentic taste of what it’s like to eat like an old-school Bavarian for a few days.
We’re not really a braggadocious company. We’d much rather you visit our markets and discover how special our people are and how unique and delicious our food is without us bragging about it.
But I really have to say that we have a truly special array of foods in our Deli for Oktoberfest.
Here’s a sample!
A Glimpse into the Deli’s Special Oktoberfest Menu
The easiest way to get a taste of Oktoberfest in our markets is by swinging through the Deli. German Pork Stew – rich and savory. Caraway Pork Roast – tender, juicy and full of flavor. Our Own Bratwurst? Made fresh in our Market with fresh-ground pork. It’s a great to explore Oktoberfest flavor without getting your hands dirty in the kitchen. Throw in some sauerkraut with bacon and onions, and our Bacon-Potato Salad and you’ve got a plate full of goodness.
German Cheeses from Käserei Champignon
Authentic German cheese from Champignon is no stranger to our markets, but we’ve got a couple special arrivals to celebrate the season.
Their Rougette is extremely creamy, yet somehow still mild and buttery and a great introduction to Brie-style cheeses.
Speaking of Brie, their Mushroom Brie is an earthy delight. Made from mushrooms harvested at the peak of the season, this double-crème cheese develops a spicy aroma and goes great with a chilled white wine.
And last but not last, the Limburger! It’s got a rep as the “stinky” cheese, but it’s really not (there are WAAAAY funkier cheeses out there!).
Limburger is creamy, earthy and kind of meaty on the finish. It’s amazing on a rye bread sandwich with onions.
Hoist a Pint of German Lager!
I’m going to cut to the chase here. You already know if you’re into Oktoberfest beers or not. I’m not going to convince you either way. All I can say is I’ve drank all three of our Oktoberfest lagers from Spaten, Ayinger and the local festbier from Ballard-based Reuben’s. They’re fantastic and my recycle bin is making so much bottle-clanking noise right now my neighbors probably think I have a problem.
Bavarian Meats from Pike Place are Oktoberfest Superstars
If you don’t know what you’re looking for in our slicing case, these meats can kind of fly under the radar. Now is the time to explore. I encourage you to simply ask anyone in our Deli for a sample and check them out. Don’t be shy!
Landjaeger – Meaning “and hunter” in German, this pork and beef snack stick is fermented, smoked and then dry cured. Perfect for on-the- go snacking, road trips, picnics or anytime you need a delicious protein boost.
Cervelat Salami – A blend of pork and beef that’s fermented and dry cured, with hints of garlic accentuated by tangy, smoky flavor.
Braunschweiger – Also known as Liverwurst, this pork liver spread is seasoned with onion, marjoram, allspice, thyme and nutmeg, then lightly smoked in a natural casing.
Gelbwurst – Translating to “yellow sausage,” this Bavarian pork-and-veal luncheon meat was invented in 1905. It was traditionally made with brains but that’s in the past! Seasoned with lots of spices including ginger and nutmeg.
Jagdwurst – Means “hunt sausage.” Made from pork belly and lightly seasoned with garlic, mace, mustard seed and cardamom, for a juicy, lunch-style meat.
Veal Loaf (Leberkäse) – This pork-and-veal lunch meat is finely ground and baked in loaf pans, making it sturdy but also very delicate. Slice it thin or thick slice it for pan frying.
Head Cheese – The one, the only! This cured, pork meat cold cut is made from the meat of a fully cooked head. Yes, it’s kind of intense, but fans of this German delicacy say you really need to try it. You might be surprised how much you like it!
Makes an interesting side dish.
Our very own cheese whiz, Shauna Howell, offers up a cheese worth discovering.
Amaltheia Organic Smoked Chèvre: With over 200 goats being milked every day, this family-owned farm in Bozeman, Mont., is busy! They make clean, fresh chèvre that’s handmade with vegetable rennet and certified organic.
Plus, it’s high in omega 3s and contains no trans-fats. I simply love the organic smoked chèvre. Instead of mayo, I slather it on a sandwich with garden-fresh tomatoes and bacon for a smoky BLT or Roast Turkey. The natural smoke provides an umami flavor to anything it’s paired with. Great as a dip for fresh carrots or sweet peppers, too.
Chris Allen is a copywriter and assistant marketer with Town & Country Markets. He’s a former contributing editor, radio anchor and producer, and an Air Force veteran. He’s also mastered the art of chopping red onions with one hand while sipping a dry Tempranillo in the other.