Das bier boot
Head down to Pier 6 at the foot of York on Friday and Saturday (October 5 and 6) when the venerable Northern Spirit hosts its annual Oktoberfest cruise. The $72.95 ticket gets you a three-hour trawl around the harbour and all the schnitzel, bratwurst and potato salad you can eat. Note: the entry fee does not include the cash bar. For more info: mariposacruises.com/pdf/flyers/Oktoberfest-Friday2012.pdf.
Toronto's first "authentic" celebration of suds culture unfolds Thursday and Friday (October 4 and 5), when the North St. Lawrence Market is transformed for Oktoberfest. Things kick off with the tapping of the keg and include entertainment by the likes of George Kash and his Oktoberfest Express Experience, the Kitchener-Waterloo Schuhplattler and Folkdancers and the Toronto Argonaut cheerleaders performing a tribute to Bavarian music. For more info: torontooktoberfest.ca.
The crew behind the monthly Brewers' Backyard events at the Brick Works throw their last bash of the year at the eco complex on the Monday (October 8) holiday. The party runs from noon to 4 pm and features suds from Beau's All- Natural Brewing and sausages from Wvrst on King West. Admission is free, but the beer 'n' brats aren't. More info at brewersbackyard.com.
Bier in the burbs
Have you always wanted to check out that new Mark McEwan grocery store? Do that and wear your lederhosen at the same time when the tony Shops at Don Mills holds its Oktoberfest October 11 to 14. Bier Markt is responsible for the brewskis as well as the sausage, sauerkraut and pretzels, and combos like the Lost Boys led by Gordon "Gord" Deppe of the Spoons provide the appropriate oom-pah-pah. More info at shopsatdonmills.ca.