It dates back 310 years, yet the annual tradition known as Oktoberfest is by necessity a different experience in 2020. For example, you can still drink it down at both locations of the gay-owned Dacha Beer Garden in honor of the famous German beer festival, and taps are set to pour Festbier from the oldest brewery in the world, Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan, all weekend long. All of that will transpire with far fewer revelers at any given time and much farther away than usual, in accordance with proper social distancing and other city-mandated measures to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Distancing requirements — and the desire to remain at home — have helped inspire a new twist on the tradition with the launch of Dacha's Oktoberfest At Home Kits. The offerings start with the DACHNiK, a $149 package that comes with a standard growler filled with fresh Festbier, a Dacha Boot, an exclusive t-shirt, and an OktoberFEAST spread for four to six people with sausages, pretzels and pretzel rolls, obatzda, sauerkraut, spiced nuts, cheese, cured Black Forest ham, and pickled vegetables. The $599 PREMIER package includes all of the above plus a porcelain Weihenstephaner Oktoberfest Mug, two t-shirts and boots, and VIP perks ranging from a private locker at the Dacha Navy Yards restaurant Jackie and priority entry and seating at both locations. The $999 HON package adds more limited merch plus a standing 15 percent off your check at Jackie.
Dacha Oktoberfest is celebrated through Oct. 4 at the original Dacha Beer Garden in Shaw, at 1600 17th St. NW, and at the new Dacha Navy Yard, 79 Potomac Ave. SE. Call 202-350-9888 or visit www.dachadc.com.
Sunday Supper Fundraiser
Over the years, the Sunday Supper at Union Market has become the primary fundraiser for the James Beard Foundation-run Women's Entrepreneurial Leadership Program (WEL), a multifaceted initiative — originally spearheaded by Jodie W. McLean, the CEO of Union Market's parent company Edens — that strives to boost the number and presence of women leaders in the food industry.
For this year's ninth incarnation, the event has been reimagined in light of the pandemic as a benefit for participating restaurants as well as WEL's work in assisting women chefs and owners to expand and grow their businesses. Amy Brandwein of Centrolina, Marcelle G. Afram of Maydan, Toyin Alli of Puddin', and Tatiana Mora of Serenata are among this year's featured chefs. They will prepare special Sunday Supper tasting menus specifically created for small groups of two, four, and six to enjoy at properly spaced tables in the private dining rooms or outside seating sections of their establishments, or as takeout for at-home dining.
Additional participating restaurants with reservations still available at press time include Union Market area restaurants Bidwell, El Cielo, Masseria, O-Ku, Peruvian Brothers, and Stellina Pizzeria, 14th Street's Bresca and Colada Shop, Shaw's Espita, downtown's RIS, and the Wharf's Officina.
Sunday, Oct. 4, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets range from $250 to $500 per seat but sold only as a set for all participants at a table, or $100 per person for takeout where available. Visit www.sundaysupperdc.com.
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