Kampala’s Oktoberfest brought the delights of German cuisine to Uganda



When the German Ambassador and the British High Commissioner sit down together over a Friday night meal, and in public, it must be special one might say, and it was. The Sheraton Kampala pulled out all the stops and the kitchen brigade produced an buffet full of German culinary delights – and no, that is not a contradiction in terms my friends – from genuine Pretzels, Kuemmel buns to all the things one expects to find on the menu in one of the real Oktoberfest’s large hospitality tents. Eisbein with Sauerkraut was as much there as the traditional Bavarian Weisswurst with sweet mustard, while other brands of Bavarian sausages too were on offer, from Nuernbergers’ to Fleischwurst and Leberkaese.

It was no surprise therefore that the distinguished members of the diplomatic corps were joined by scores of Ugandans and expatriates for the second of three nights of the Oktoberfest to sample German ethnic food and wash it down with some cold beers from large mugs, served by the Sheraton, staff dressed up with splendid imitations of Bavarian hats and wearing the typical ‘Hosentraeger’ one comes to expect in Bavaria, though not the ‘Lederhosen’.

James Rattos, the hotels Director of Sales and Marketing was at hand to receive guests in person, making sure that the hotel shows itself from the sunniest side, even after dark, ahead of the upcoming festive season, when big dollars are being spent by Uganda’s corporate who is who on catering for staff parties, receptions for business associates and cocktail parties chasing each other down the calendar towards the Christmas Holidays. And for couples, to add that bit of an extra goodie, the hotel was offering a rate of US Dollars 150 a night per room, sparing those with love for each other, but also for their beers, the risk of driving home and being nabbed by Kampala’s cops, who are known to be out enforce on weekend nights to catch those who dare to go over the limit, an offer according to James taken up by several diners.

A night out on the town, well spent and well eaten, with any pretence of being on a diet being deferred until the day after.