Friday, October 13, 2017

Rockin' at City of Dreams Manila's Oktoberfest

City of Dreams Manila rolls out the barrels, benches and tables and a whole lot of fun for Oktoberfest...

It's Oktoberfest at City of Dreams Manila, kicked off with a rockin' launch last October 12, 2017 at the Grand Ballroom with an exclusive celebration for the resort's key corporate and travel accounts followed by another celebration open to the public on October 13 with overflowing beer, sausages, German delicacies, rock bands and barrels of fun. And City of Dreams Manila kicks it off in a grand and massive scale, bringing the rich and diverse flavors of German cuisine with a selection of the finest beers to the integrated resort. Read on for a feel of the Oktoberfest City of Dreams of Manila.

At the elegant Grand Ballroom of City of Dreams Manila, rows and rows of benches and tables filled the expansive space recreating the festive Bavarian beer hall vibe. At the center of the stage, an imposing beer mug tower delicately stacked on ice would be the focal point for the festival's ceremonial beer-pouring ritual to formally launch the Oktoberfest celebrations at City of Dreams Manila. It's just one of the many impressive sights at the kick-off event, which included a sumptuous array of traditional German cuisine prepared by the resort's F & B team led by Anthony Hannan. And what a feast. But first, pick a mug and choose your brew...

During the launch, guests from City of Dreams Manila's top corporate and travel accounts were treated to an evening of free-flowing beer, unlimited sausages, and various traditional German dishes with live performances in the first of three nights to kick-off the Oktoberfest celebrations. The beer selection included San Miguel Beer... 

...Sapporo Premium Beer from Japan (L) and Weihenstephaner from the oldest brewery in Germany and the world. Established by Benedictine monks back in 725, Weihenstephaner continues its rich heritage of brewing traditions with a variety of refreshing beers including a limited edition Oktoberfest brew.

Guests can indulge in other premium beers including Heineken from the Netherlands (L) as well as one of the leading local craft beers, Pedro Brewcrafters (R), with their line of artisan brews including my favorite, Elementary English Ale. Good to see old friends again, Nadine and Jen (R) behind the taps at the Pedro booth.

And you can even have your personalized bottle with your very own image on the label, now that's pretty cool (for more on Pedro Brewcrafters, see my earlier post, And Then There Were Four: Meet The New Wandering Wanderer IPA from Pedro Brewcrafters...).

The F & B Team led by Anthony Hannan literally takes you on a culinary journey of rustic and traditional flavors, bringing back a piece of Bavaria to this side of the metro for a memorable Oktoberfest dining experience. After a few refreshing sips, it was time pick up a plate for a Bavarian feast of epic proportions...

Start with City of Dreams Manila's Speck, thin slices of smoked ham resembling bacon with pronounced briny notes followed by deep smoky hints that just melts in your mouth with every bite, perfectly washed down by a cold beer.

Add some Cheese and Schinken or Black Forest Ham to your plate for tasty nibbles that's big on flavor. The assorted starters of cheese and charcuterie alone are a meal in itself, but there's more. 

The Landjager or Smoked Sausages, are German sausages that are smoked, dried, and air-cured for a long time for sharp and distinct flavors. Perfect with a side of pickled gherkins.  

No Oktoberfest is complete without some comforting pork love, and the Schweinerollbraten in Biersobe Mit Geffultem Wirsing or Pork Roll in Beer Sauce with Stuffed Savoy Cabbage is a savory dish that looks every inch as good as it tastes. There's just nothing like the savory richness of pork with beer.

At one end of the buffet spread, a whole roasted suckling pig becomes a popular attraction confirming everyone's long-running love affair with pork. And it's another layer in the rich tapestry of Oktoberfest flavors that just makes it so popular...

The impressive Spanferkel, a German Style Lechon or whole roast suckling pig, is just perfectly tender and juicy capped with a thin layer of crisp crackling. A cold beer pairs perfectly with the roast pork, cleansing the palate and opening it up for yet another savory bite. And another. It's Oktoberfest, so just go with the flow. 

The traditional Grillhaxe or Roast Pork Knuckles (L) is the German version of crispy pata, with contrasting juicy and crisp textures of pork knuckles with each tasty bite. Another traditional dish served that evening is the Wienerschnitzel mit Preiselbeen or Breaded Veal Escalope with Cranberry Sauce with its delicate notes.

More tasty and meaty options await at the buffet spread, including the Fleischpastete or German Style Baked Pate (L), perfect with freshly baked rye bread, and the rustic and comforting Fleischkase or German Meatloaf (R) with its mildly spiced and richly seasoned notes lining the palate.

A day after the event, and I still can't get over the lavish buffet spread, from the Sauerbraten or Vinegar Marinated Braised Beef to the Brathendl or German Style Roast Chicken, Bagger mit Apfelmus or Potato Pancakes with Apple Puree and the Sauerkraut, Rotkohl or Braised Red Cabbage and Kase Spatzle or Handmade Noodle Drops with Caramelized Onions and Cheese. And each one just pairs so well with a cold beer. 

Guests also enjoyed a sumptuous spread of garden-fresh salads with potatoes, beet root and cucumber and hearty soups like Gaisburger Marsch and Fladdlesuppe. Make it a real Oktoberfest feast with Kartoffel Salat or German Potato Salad (L) and the Stadwurst mit Musick or Vinegar and Onion Marinated Sausages (R).

Sausages? City of Dreams Manila rolls out an impressive selection of authentic German sausages made in-house to complete the Oktoberfest celebrations. It's this dedication to authenticity that made this Oktoberfest so much more special, with the F & B team flying in premium ingredients and making many of the dishes from scratch, including most of the sausages. Each of the sausages, whether boiled or grilled, delivers an audible snap with every bite, releasing its savory and richly seasoned flavors. And there's a whole lot to choose from... take your pick. City of Dreams Manila goes all-out with its offerings of authentic German sausages, many made in-house, including the Thuringer, Bratwurst, Knacker, Weisswurst, Nurnburger, Bockwurst, and Wiener Wurstchen paired with fresh Sauerkraut, Pretzels, Mustard and Salted Butter.

Property President Geoff Andres (L) highlighted the valuable support of local industry partners in his opening remarks, followed by the beer-pouring ceremony to formally begin the Oktoberfest celebrations at City of Dreams of Manila. And as the beer flowed down the tower, guests raised their mugs with a loud cheer.

Property President Geoff Andres was then joined by Sales and Marketing Director for Non-Gaming Operations Jenny Santillan along with General Manager for Non-Gaming Operations Marlon Hirsh and F & B Director Anthony Hannan in a toast and it's official, it's Oktoberfest at City of Dreams Manila. And guests continued to celebrate the rest of the evening with F & B Director Anthony Hannan's impressive spread of Bavarian delicacies. Another round of beer and sausages? Absolutely.

Guests at the opening night of City of Dreams Manila's third annual Oktoberfest festivities participated in fun contests including pretzel-eating, beer-chugging from a boot-shaped mug, "Bring Me" and exciting raffle prizes as F & B Director Anthony Hannan (R) and his team enjoyed a well-deserved round for a well-executed and lavish Bavarian feast.  

Celebrity and Model Rovilson Fernandez and Chaos Manila Entertainment Manager Christina Coloma, a finalist at the recent Miss World Philippines, hosted the client appreciation party at the Grand Ballroom. The evening's entertainment included live performances from Part 3 Band (L), Eye Candy, and True Faith (R).

Cap your Oktoberfest feast with traditional Bavarian desserts including Apple Strudel (L) served with vanilla cream and a few slices of Bienenstich or Bee Sting Cake (R) paired with a dark beer. Other indulgent desserts featured that evening included German Cinnamon Rolls, Linzer Cakes, and Gingerbread Hearts.

Rockin'. From starters to mains and desserts and a lot of good beer in between tasty bites, City of Dreams Manila hits it off the ballpark with another power play of Bavarian flavors for a unique dining experience. Authentic flavors, overflowing beer, and a whole lot of good vibes, City of Dreams Manila's rocks the Oktoberfest scene in a memorable opening night of festivities and fun. Can't wait for next year's edition...

City of Dreams Manila is located at Aseana Boulevard corner Macapagal Avenue, Entertainment City, Paranaque City or call +632 800-8080 for more information.

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