Described as the insider's Oktoberfest the Munich Strong Beer Festival starts during Lent and after the end of the Carnival season, lasting for about four weeks. The origins of this event go back to the monks who concocted a strong beer which provided nutritional value to help them recover from the Lent fasting. The strong beer is actually a double bock beer which is heavy on malt and is considered much stronger than a 'normal' beer.
Many breweries open a tent for revellers during the strong beer season and bring their own kind of seasonal beer to sell. The Starkbierzeit Bands ensure a cheerful party atmosphere and waiters in traditional costumes provide food and drink for the guests. Traditional dishes like O'batzter (Camembert cheese crumbled with onion, paprika and butter), Steckerlfisch (a grilled fish on a stick), Leberkäs (typical Bavarian meat) and broiled chicken are served.
Many of the Starkbierzeit visitors wear the traditional clothing. If you don't have a Dirndl or Lederhosen, there are plenty of opportunities to buy one in the many second-hand or specialised stores around the festival. There are also other events in the 'Löwenbräu Cellar' you shouldn't miss, too. For example, strong men from all over Bavaria take part in a stone lifting and a wood-chopping competition to measure their strengths.
If you enjoyed the Munich Strong Beer Festival why not check out the Munich Christmas Market too?