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martes, diciembre 28

Beer festivals around the world

(Even if there are some original ones, most beer festivals -taken from the Expat Daily Telegraph's news letter- in this list seem to be a "copy&paste" coming from original Munich Oktoberfest.)

Oktoberfest, the world's largest beer fair, has celebrated its 200th anniversary this year. The festival is held from late September to the first weekend of October in Munich, Germany. In 2007, nearly seven million litres of beer was consumed - as well as around 143,000 pork sausages.

The Brazilian city of Blumenau, founded by a German immigrant, has held its own Oktoberfest since 1984. The festival lasts three weeks, and is the biggest beer festival in the country.

The rather wordy Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest is held jointly by the cities of Kitchener and Waterloo in Ontario. It is the largest Bavarian festival in Canada, and lasts nine days. Its "Miss Oktoberfest" pageant is particularly popular with visitors, apparently.

The Great American Beer festival in Denver, Colorado was founded in 1982 and attracts more than 50,000 visitors. It is held from 16 to 18 September every year, and claims to offer more than 2000 types of American beer.

If you're based in Europe, you may also head to Estonia for the Õllesummer festival. Held every July in the historic city of Tallinn, the festival centres on two things - music and beer.

Brussels had held a "Beer Weekend" in early September for over 12 years. Over fifty local breweries attend, and there are demonstrations and talks from top people in the world of Belgian beer - if you're sober enough to listen.

Believe it or not, Hong Kong has its very own Oktoberfest, organised by the Marco Polo Hong Kong Hotel. In 2009 more than 40,000 litres of beer, 7,200 pretzels, and 30,000 sausages were consumed.

If you fancy an alternative to Munich's Oktoberfest, the Cannstatter Volksfest takes place at around the same time in Stuttgart. Though not strictly a beer festival, we reckon the wide variety of beers available must have some attraction for the four million people who descend on the fair every year.

The Great British Beer Festival, held in London every August, is Britain's biggest beer festival. It is organised by the Campaign for Real Ale, and there are over 700 beers on offer every year.

In China, the city of Qingdao has a 14-day beer festival which starts at the end of August. The largest beer festival in Asia, it has run for 16 years. And yes - we're bemused by the tiny glasses too.

Off to Argentina, where the small mountain village of Villa General Belgrano holds the largest beer festival in the country. Founded by German immigrants, the village is characterised by Bavarian-style architecture, and takes its Oktoberfest very seriously.

The Cambridge Beer Festival, held since 1974, claims to be Britain's oldest beer fair. It is held on Jesus Green for a week every May, and attracts up to 40,000 people. A Winter Ales Festival is also held in January.

Stockholm holds a Beer and Whisky Festival every year, which it claims is the biggest exhibition of its kind in Europe. This year, the festival has run from 30 September to 9 October, and has offered around 1000 different types of tipple.

"Let's make this event the Oktoberfest of the South Pacific!" is the tagline for Beer Festival Australia, scheduled for summer 2011 in Sydney. The event will feature beer, music, dance performances, and stand-up comedy. Fräulein costumes are "optional, but always appreciated", according to the website.