Bring on the beer: Oktoberfest 2012 in Las Vegas

Ready for Oktoberfest? The 16-day festival originating in Munich is celebrated all around the world with varying versions and in different parts of autumn. Some even take place in Las Vegas.  We’ve gathered some of the biggest celebrations, but you can always have your own Oktoberfest at any of these Vegas bars.

Oktoberfest kicked off at Hofbräuhaus on Sept. 15.

Hofbräuhaus – Of course, Hofbräuhaus is an important name when it comes to Oktoberfest in Las Vegas, considering their connection to the original Hofbräuhaus in Germany. For the ninth year in a row, the Bavarian restaurant is hosting celebrity keg tappings every weekend through Oct. 27 – which is a bit longer than the official Oktoberfest season, but all the more chances to party like they do in Bavaria. The tappings kicked off this past weekend with legendary magicians Siegfried and Roy and will continue with “Pawn Stars” Corey Harrison, comedian Carrot Top, PBR cowboy Luke Snyder, “America’s Got Talent” winner Michael Grimm, UFC fighter Frank Mir, BMX rider Ricardo Laguna, singer Frankie Moreno, the Chippendales dancers and more.

Every Friday and Saturday through Oct. 27, Hofbräuhaus will also host its first Oktoberfest Stein-Holding Competition, where participants will compete for their chance to win a grand prize of dinner for 10.

Hoptober at The Mirage – Beer aficionados, The Mirage is celebrating your beverage of choice with this month-long celebration. Focusing on craft beers, restaurants and bars throughout the property will have brews from some top breweries in the country: Top Rated, New Belgium, AleSmith and more.  They’ll also feature seasonal offerings and bottles of beer not generally available at The Mirage for the occasion.

Samba will offer a selection of Brazilian beers, Cravings buffet will feature seasonal Oktoberfest and pumpkin ales, and Carnegie Deli will have bottles from New York-based Ommegang.

Each week, kokomo’s and Onda Ristorante will feature a unique four-course menu. These meals include dessert, are paired with a beer and designed to complement the specific cuisine served at both restaurants.  The menus are $79 all-inclusive and will be featured on the following dates:

Top Rated Beer

kokomo’s – Tuesday, Oct. 2 – Sunday, Oct. 7

Onda Ristorante – Thursday, Oct. 4 – Sunday, Oct. 7

Samuel Adams Beer

kokomo’s – Tuesday, Oct. 9 – Sunday, Oct. 14

Onda Ristorante – Thursday, Oct. 11 – Sunday, Oct. 14

AleSmith Beer

kokomo’s – Tuesday, Oct. 16 – Sunday, Oct. 21

Onda Ristorante – Thursday, Oct. 18 – Sunday, Oct. 21

New Belgium Beer

kokomo’s – Tuesday, Oct. 23 – Wednesday, Oct. 31

Onda Ristorante – Thursday, Oct. 25 – Monday, Oct. 29

Onda Wine Lounge will be offering free classes to help guests increase their beer knowledge and learn more about brewing, pairings and trends.  The seminars begin at 4 p.m. and seating is limited. The classes, each designed specifically for The Mirage, include:

Saturday, Oct. 6 – Lagunitas and American IPAs

Friday, Oct. 12 and Saturday, Oct. 13 – The Fine Art of Brewing

Friday, Oct. 19 and Saturday, Oct. 20 – Beer and Food Pairing

Friday, Oct. 26 and Saturday, Oct. 27 – New Belgium Brewing and Sour Ales

A look at the 2011 Fall Beer Festival at the Golden Nugget.

Golden Nugget’s Third Annual Fall Beer Festival – Golden Nugget is hosting this on Oct. 19 – 20, kicking off the two-day festival with the All American Craft Beer Tasting sponsored by Samuel Adams, from 7 – 10 p.m.  You’ll have access to more than 120 craft beers and appetizers, with live music and chances to chat with some of the country’s best award-winning brew masters. Each guest will also receive a commemorative glass as a souvenir. Tickets cost $50.

The second day brings on the Oktoberfest Pool Party, sponsored by Paulaner. This one goes on at The Tank, the Golden Nugget’s infamous pool and shark aquarium, on Oct. 20 from 3 – 9 p.m. Admission is free and beer enthusiasts can sample over 150 American craft beers for purchase, with a mix of both current music and traditional German music playing.

Guests attending both events can receive discounted food and beer tickets for the Oktoberfest Pool Party with paid admission to Friday’s event.