Best Oktoberfest Beer: Your Oktoberfest Beer Guide

On a quest to find the best Oktoberfest beer? Your search ends here! With a simple guide provided by the beer experts at Drinkable Gifts

For over two centuries, and for many more to come, thousands of people gather in Munich every autumn to spread cheer, and most importantly, drink beer! What calls them to this stadium of fun, feasts, and festivity? Well, Oktoberfest, of course! What started as a Bavarian tradition has now made its way around the world while remaining an integral part of German culture that consists of traditional games, music, and delicious food. 

But, of course, the real star of the show is the beer! Making it the ultimate gift for friends and family celebrating this exciting occasion. In this article, we’ll give you a guide to the best Oktoberfest beer and our top beer gifts to send to the beer lovers in your life! 

Original bavarian pretzels with beer stein on wooden board.

What is Oktoberfest?

Oktoberfest is an annual folk festival held in Munich, Germany, dating back to 1810. Originating as a celebration of Bavaria’s Crown Prince Ludwig’s wedding to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen, it is now a beloved beer-drinking event. This world-renowned festival draws visitors from every corner of the globe! 

Interestingly, only the six main breweries in Munich may serve beer at the festival. This is because of an ancient German beer law called Reinheitsgebot, known as the “Purity Law.” It requires that all German beers be brewed with nothing more than barley, hops, and water. And while it may sound like a bit of a straightjacket, these constraints are a blessing in disguise! German brewers, true masters of their craft, use these rules to create timeless classics. Today, German beer captures hearts far beyond their homeland. 

The official brewery participants set up their own tents at the main Oktoberfest event in Munich, Germany, and host events worldwide. 

The Best Oktoberfest Beer: The “Big Six” Munich Breweries

The six breweries producing Oktoberfest beer are often called The Big Six. And each of them has a rich history that has earned them a place in the world’s biggest beer festival. Read more about the best Oktoberfest beer from Munich’s finest beer companies: 


One of Munich’s oldest surviving breweries has quite a simple origin story. Founded by the Augustiner brothers in 1328, this beer business has stood the test of time and is the only Munich brewery still storing beer in wooden barrels! Everyone in the know, from locals to globe-trotting beer aficionados, swears by Augustiner as the cream of the crop. Some say it’s the divine touch from their religious roots, while others think it’s all about the secret well they dip into for pristine water. 

The Flavor: Amazingly crisp and clean, boasting a light bready malt, light grasses, caramel, and well-rounded hop profile.  


Internationally recognized by their classic flip-top bottles, Hacker-Pschorr beer is the lightest beer you’ll find at Oktoberfest. Founded in 1417, the Hacker beer tradition runs deep. But, the formation of Hacker-Pschorr took place in the 1970s when two Munich breweries joined forces. Over the years, the Hackers and Pschorrs had exchanged hands multiple times since the late 18th century. Notably, Joseph Pschorr, commissioned by the Crown Prince of Bavaria in 1810 to craft a unique wedding beer, inadvertently laid the foundation for the Oktoberfest tradition! 

The Flavor: This Oktoberfest beer offers the drinker a little bit of everything! Sweet, dry, bitter, malty, and hoppy all at once. Its versatility is certainly what sets it apart. 


Translating to “Lion’s Brew,” Löwenbräu has remained true to its crisp taste since its first serving 700 years ago. And, as one of the most iconic names in German beer, they have been a staple participant in Oktoberfest. If you plan on attending the festivities in Munich and want to try what is most likely the best Oktoberfest beer, just look out for a gigantic mechanical roaring lion perched on top of a tent! 

The Flavor: Each sip offers a crisp and light-bodied start with a prickly and hoppy finish! After the hops fade, a clean and refreshing sweetness lingers on the tastebuds.

friends toasting with beer at Oktoberfest


While Paulaner is technically the youngest Munich brewery, it is also the largest one in Bavaria! Known for modernizing the brewing process with steam power in the 19th century, this iconic beer company brings a sweet and lemon-flavored twist to Oktoberfest festivities! 

The Flavor: Paulaner is the best Oktoberfest beer to pair with food! Offering light, toasted malt with a smidge of spiced banana and a lemon-hop finish that cleanses the palate.


In a historic moment at the 1872 Oktoberfest, Josef unveiled the first amber-hued Märzen-style beer, laying the foundation for today’s iconic Oktoberfest brew. Meanwhile, Gabriel II introduced a groundbreaking cooling method, paving the way for the bottom-fermentation technique used in Munich lagers. After World War I, the two brothers merged their brewing houses into a single Spaten brand. Although the brand has gone through a few mergers since then, its crisp taste remains the same! 

The Flavor: Spaten beer is crisp and bubbly, offering a mild biscuity malt with a faint lemon and a hop-filled finish. 


Founded by Duke Wilhelm V in 1589, one could say this brewery has a royal connection. Today, Hofbräu is run by the Bavarian government and, naturally, is among the largest of all beer tents at Oktoberfest. But you’ll certainly get the most booze for your buck, as this brew is the strongest of the bunch! With an ABV of 6.3%. 

The Flavor: Each sip starts off as crisp and refreshing, and then matures into flavors of grain, dough, hay, and bitter noble hops. 

Want to learn more about the history of German beer-making? Read our blog on The History of German Beer.

Our Best Oktoberfest Beer Gifts 

Now that you know more about some of the best Oktoberfest beer, we’re hoping you’re inspired to send a few beer gifts to your brewskies! Here are our best Oktoberfest beer gifts to send to your loved ones celebrating: 

refined german beer collection

Refined German Beer Collection

Indulge the beer connoisseur in your life with a gift basket inspired by Oktoberfest! Your recipient will get to sample ten assorted bottles of German beer and tasty snacks to offer them an amazing taste sensation. 

best oktoberfest beer a study of european beer basket

A Study of European Beer

Filled with bold flavors and unique combinations, this beer basket will treat your family and friends to a taste of Europe without them having to leave home. They’ll enjoy a whopping twelve bottles of assorted European beer, each a noted brand from Germany, Belgium, England, and other noteworthy nations. 

the best oktoberfest beer reinheitsgebot spoils

Reinheitsgebot Spoils

As we mentioned, laws guarding the sacred nature of German beer have been in place for over 500 years. So, they must be doing something right! Let them enjoy the distinctive flavor of Deutschland with six bottles of assorted German beer and an array of complementary snacks.

the best oktoberfest beer finest german beer basket

The Finest of German Beer

When it comes to the best Oktoberfest beer gift, you can never go wrong with three bottles of excellent German beer and assorted snacks! 

Thank you for exploring the best Oktoberfest beer with us! What’s next?

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