Oktoberfest Menu, Local Honey, Meet Gudrun
Oktoberfest Arrives at Harrison's Tonight!
Oktoberfest at Harrison's is back tonight with some delicious and authentic German recipes to help warm you up on these crisp fall nights. Enjoy Gulaschsuppe, a rich beef and potato soup seasoned with paprika and caraway, Jaegerschnitzel with a flavorful bacon sauce (made with local pork and bacon), and some wonderful German desserts and beers. Some beers you can expect to see make appearances on tap this month: Spaten Oktoberfest, Franziskaner Hefe-Weisse, Otto's Oktoberfest, and Elk Creek Oktoberfest.
Our Oktoberfest menu will be available in addition to our full dinner menu daily after 4:30pm. Gut Essen!
Staff Spotlight: Gloria (Gudrun) Schellander
We've been getting some extra inspiration and advice on our Oktoberfest menu this year from someone whose face is probably familiar to many of you: one of our very own servers, Gudrun Schellander – or Gloria as she is known in the USA.
Gloria was born in Gelsenkirchen, a city within the Ruhr district (or Ruhrgebiet) in the North Rhine-Westphalia state of Germany. Gelsenkirchen was the most important coal mining town in Europe in the early 20th century and was called the "city of a thousand fires" because of the flames of mine gasses flaring at night. Gloria's Austrian-born father and German-born mother moved there for her father's work. Later, they moved to Dormagen, a city close to Cologne on the west bank of the Rhine River, where she grew up. Every summer, though, her family vacationed in Austria, where her father's many siblings still lived.
Gloria moved to State College in the fall of 1980 (having also called Montana home for a short while), and has been here ever since. She has become a mainstay on the food hospitality scene, and she has been working for Harrison's for over three years now. We're happy to have her here!
In addition to helping make sure our German spelling and grammar is correct (it's difficult!), Gloria also advised us on recipes to make our selections more authentic. The Gulaschsuppe we added last year and are offering again this year is from a recipe she handwrote for us from her own experience—"Everyone eats gulasch in Germany!" Gloria says. She does note, though, that traditional Oktoberfest food is actually more accurately described as Bavarian, which is a region in southern Germany, the cuisine of which bears a strong resemblance to that of Austria. While gulasch, schnitzel, and kraut are eaten all over Germany, there are regional differences, depending on what part of the country you're in. For instance, northern Germans like their kraut and sauerbraten on the more sour side, while Bavarian versions are often a bit sweeter. Gloria's favorite German food? Well, that's tough, but her favorite dessert is Pflaumenkuchen, or German plum cake. Yum!
Gloria will also be advising us on the correct pronunciations of our Oktoberfest offerings, which are served after 4:30pm (with Gulaschsuppe offered on our Fresh Bar and all day long). She's here in the daytime if you'd like to stop by and say "Guten Tag" and practice your Deutsche!
The Wonderful World of Honey
Harrison's Sous Chef Kristin Rigby-DeBoer recently made a local honey-parsley vinaigrette for our local salad, which got us thinking about honey…because it’s pretty amazing stuff!
For instance, did you know that honey never goes bad? Archaeologists allegedly found 2000-year-old jars of honey in King Tut’s tombs that still tasted great. It’s also the only food that contains all the substances that are needed to sustain life (like enzymes, minerals, vitamins, and water).
We get our honey from Lost Hollow Honey, located in Spring Mills, and use it in many of our dressings and sauces, such as our Whiskey Pepper Pork sauce, when we want to add a touch of sweetness.
For more interesting honey and honey bee facts, click here.
Harrison's Fall Feature Menus: 2015 Line-Up
We typically run our feature menus by month, but this fall we have so any interesting foods to work with, we’ll be switching it up a bit. You can expect Oktoberfest to continue for about three weeks, and then we’ll be switching to our Autumn Harvest Menu for another three weeks to take advantage of the wonderful fall bounty. About mid-November, just in time for everyone to start hankering for Thanksgiving flavors, we’ll be starting the Cranberry & the Nut menu inspired by those staple ingredients of the holidays. More details to come!