Thursday, October 20, 2016

Prost! Oktoberfest at The Peninsula Manila's Escolta

Beer, pork, and sausages. It's that time of the year when a cold beer with loads of savory pork dishes and sausages combine for a festive feast. It's Oktoberfest, prepare for barrels of fun at The Peninsula Manila... 

Starting October 17, 2016, diners can experience Oktoberfest in a two week-long celebration at The Peninsula Manila's international buffet restaurant, Escolta, with traditional Bavarian dishes paired with free-flowing Paulaner draft beer. Beer, pork, and sausages, it's all here at The Peninsula Manila's Oktoberfest celebration at Escolta.

During an intimate preview of Escolta's Oktoberfest, rustic Bavarian cookies were set on the tables. It's been quite a while since The Peninsula Manila celebrated Oktoberfest, and this year's week-long celebration brings back the traditional Bavarian festival with that signature Peninsula touch.

For the duration of the two week-long Oktoberfest celebration at Escolta, the friendly and courteous female receptionists were garbed in traditional Bavarian costumes adding to the festive Oktoberfest vibe. And it's time for an ice-cold mug of Paulaner beer to jumpstart the Oktoberfest celebrations...

Unlimited refills of Paulaner Oktoberfest Bier in one liter mugs (you can have your Paulaner beer in Small and medium glasses, just in case you need to pace yourself) gets you in the Oktoberfest groove in no time. With a slightly higher alcohol content of 6% than the usual lager, its distinct full-bodied flavors and subtle malty sweetness rounds out each and every sip for that perfect Oktoberfest tipple.

At The Peninsula Manila's Escolta, diners can feast on an impressive range of international flavors in a sumptuous buffet format, featuring the freshest catch of the day and live stations. And for two weeks, you can savor traditional Bavarian flavors to pair with round after round of Paulaner Beer, including traditional Pretzels served with a variety of smooth and grainy mustard adding sharp notes and pairing well with a long soothing sip of ice-cold beer.

Or you can go for a platter of cheeses, including Blue Cheese and Gorgonzola...

...and creamy Goat Cheese (L) and Brie (R) at Escolta's impressive Cheese Station, just one of many tasty starters to go with another round of Paulaner beer. The velvety smooth textures of the soft cheeses and its rich notes line the palate, washed down perfectly with a sip of perfectly chilled beer. 

Then, load up on Escolta's wide variety of premium cured meats...

...and thin slices of ham and assorted charcuterie to complete your first course. After a satisfying first round of Paulaner beer and appetizers, it's time for a true Bavarian feast and celebrate Oktoberfest at Escolta with their featured Bavarian selections...

For the Oktoberfest celebration, Escolta offers authentic Bavarian flavors alongside its international buffet spread. The impressive selections include the Weisswurst Sausage, a traditional Bavarian sausage made with minced veal and pork back bacon stuffed in fresh pork casings. The sausages are presented in a pot of heated water, the traditional Bavarian way, keeping the Weisswurst Sausages warm. Pair your Weisswurst Sausages with a pretzel, a dab of mustard and a mug of Paulaner beer...perfect.

At Escolta, you'll find even more traditional Bavarian sausages, like the Kassler Schuebling and Thueringer with Sauerkraut, sausages in natural pork casings filled with minced pork and beef. Delicately grilled with a fine sear, each bite delivers a fresh snap, releasing juicy and savory notes punctuated by hints of rich seasonings and spices. The sauerkraut adds a layer of sharpness to balance the richness of the sausages. Perfect as is, even better with mustard and another ice-cold beer.

A hearty noodle dish, the Allgauer Kasespatzle, creamy noodles topped with crispy onions, is a great side for your Bavarian feast at Escolta. Soft and creamy, with just a hint of smoky sweetness from the crispy onions, the Allgauer Kasespatzle adds a rustic vibe with rich flavors, perfect when paired with the other savory mains at Escolta's Oktoberfest spread... the Bavarian Roasted Chicken (L) topped with shallots, and the Laugen Serviette Dumplings with Creamy Wild Mushroom Ragout (R), both comforting dishes in a sumptuous Bavarian Oktoberfest-themed buffet spread. 

And here's the beef. The Saurbraten, a thick and flavorful Beef Pot Roast with Red Cabbage and Potatoes, with fork-tender beef slow-cooked in a thick gravy. The richness of the juicy beef, draped in flavorful sauce, is tempered by the subtle sharpness of the pickled red cabbage for balanced flavors, another not-to-be-missed dish at Escolta's Oktoberfest.

The parade of traditional Bavarian flavors continue with the Kohlroulade, or Veal Stuffed Cabbage, with a savory veal filling draped in a light yet flavorful sauce.

No Oktoberfest celebration is complete without some serious pork love. Escolta's Crispy Suckling Pig offers tender and juicy pork with its delicate and mildly sweet notes capped by a layer of crisp crackling for fresh and clean flavors. Pair it with Escolta's Flavored Salts for even more intense notes. 

And there's more. The Knusprige Schweinshaxen, or Pork Shank with Beer Gravy, yet another highlight at Escolta's Oktoberfest buffet. The flavors of the juicy pork are layered with a hint of briny notes, capped by the thick sweet and savory beer gravy. Roasted for hours, the Pork Shank with Beer Gravy calls for another round of beer.

The Bacon and Onion Pizza is Escolta's teutonic spin on pizza, a thin and crisp crust topped with the bold smoky notes of bacon and the sweetness of onions delivering fresh flavors.

Another round of Paulaner beer keeps the celebration going, with a dark Paulaner Original Dunkel Lager (L) with its subtle caramel sweetness for more good vibes. One more toast, with cheers of "Prost!" all around, It's Oktoberfest right here at The Peninsula Manila's Escolta.  

But save room for dessert. Escolta complements its extensive selection of savory Bavarian starters and mains with an equally impressive variety of indulgent desserts, including the classic Schwarzwalder Kirschtorte (L), or Black Forest Cake, and the Aprikotenkuchen (R), a baked apricot pie. 

Escolta's sinful spread features a selection of intricate pastries and fresh fruits, but not to be missed is their Bavarian take on the classic Chocolate Mousse, the Schokoladen Mousse (R), with luscious chocolate capped with velvety smooth dark chocolate and topped with chocolate shards. 

A cup of freshly brewed coffee and a slice of Wiener Apfelstrudel, the traditional Apple Strudel with Vanilla Sauce, caps my Bavarian Oktoberfest feast at Escolta. Celebrate the return of Oktoberfest to The Peninsula Manila with an authentic Bavarian feast of pork, sausages, Paulaner beer and more at Escolta. But better hurry. The Oktoberfest at Escolta runs for two week only starting October 17 until October 29, 2016... 

Escolta is located at the Ground Floor of the Makati Tower, The Peninsula Manila, corner of Ayala and Makati Avenues, 1266 Makati City, Metro Manila or call +63 2 887-2888 for inquiries and reservations.

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