Black Forest, Lucerne and Geneva
Posted 01 May 2003 - 02:17 AM
We'd really like to try restaurants that offer traditional cuisine from these areas. Also, some good fondue recommendations for Switzerland. Any feedback anyone can offer would be greatly appreciated.
Posted 01 May 2003 - 10:20 AM
However -- I'll recommend what to order, instead. If you're leaving soon (and your note implies that you are), you'll be in Germany in the middle of asparagus season. Most restaurants have asparagus specials, often advertised as "frische spargel" (I'm murdering the spelling). In fact, most have a separate menu with the asparagus items , and a major one is asparagus as entree.
That sounds odd to us, but IMHO it's wonderful. You get at least a half pound of white asparagus per person, generally accompanied with boiled white potatoes and hollandaise sauce. You often have a choice of add-on, such as sliced Black Forest Ham (for which we have a weakness).
Posted 01 May 2003 - 03:20 PM
Posted 02 May 2003 - 03:49 AM
Great use of root vegetables, super fresh local ingredients, lot's of cured, pickled and smoked items and perhaps the world's most sure handed use of the lowly cabbage (kraut to remember). Bread and exotically seeded rolls are among the best anywhere.
As in most of Europe, unless its a top dining experience, avoid all temtation to order beef. It'll be unrecognizable as you know it and inciinerated to a deep grey (perhaps a good thing). Ditto for most typical restaurant lamb. If you believe as I do that everything from a pig is great, you'll get along just fine. The overall flavor palette of German cuisine though, is decidedly beige.
Germany is a beer drinker's paradise, but if wine's your game, guess what? 80% of the wine any reasonably cultured German drinks is dry (trocken)-Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc), Grauburgunder (Pinot Gris) Gewürztraminer, Silvaner, all classic accompaniments to the seasonal spagel (asparagras), the novelty of which having had thrust at you in every course, every damned day, you will quickly tire of. Riesling has way too much personality and acidity for the funky green spears.
Speaking of Riesling, well balaced dry Riesling from Germany is what the Germans drink and is unquestionably the most food friendly wine on this planet. Most American importers are forever stuck on the sweet treadmill (amazing, unique wines with no peers, but somewhat limited food uses). Take this opurtunity to discover (nay, revel) in the dry Rieslings of Germany (I'm beginning to sound like a travel poster). They, and one of the most gorgeous and varied countrysides you have ever driven through will be the real revelation of your trip. Avoid all rotwein!!! (red wine as only the Germans could name it)
PS. The wurst rocks. WG
Edited by Wine Avenger, 02 May 2003 - 03:58 AM.
Posted 02 May 2003 - 09:18 AM
The good side of this is that I discovered what good things could be done with venison and rabbit. The disadvantage is that I can't afford to make any of them myself, because the meat is so much more expensive here.
Posted 02 May 2003 - 09:27 AM
Posted 02 May 2003 - 09:49 AM
Enjoy your trip!
Posted 02 May 2003 - 02:52 PM
Right on!! I had a fabulous German Spaetbergunder at Restaurant Margaux in Berlin. German red wine can be VERY good -- but they make so little of it that it's all slurped up domestically, and you need to know what to look for. (Which is why I left it to the sommelier.) I wish I could name a Weingut that specializes in reds, but I can't. However they are around and are worth asking around for.
Evidently the Wine Avenger has not drunk the Baden reds from the Kaiserstuhl area. Or the delicious Spaetburgunder Weissherbsts.
Posted 03 May 2003 - 05:10 AM
Posted 06 May 2003 - 07:06 AM
In Lucerne the best restaurant is probably the Old Swiss House, very similar in style to Les Armures but probably not as good.
My favourite restaurant in Lucerne is in the Wilden Mann hotel (actually three restaurants as they have a terrace, a dining room and a stube, the same kitchem and food but very different rooms. The food is quite traditional with some lighter Italianate touches, which I guess is still traditional if you come from Lugano.
Another good restaurant is the Rotes Gatter in the Hotel des Balances, it has a terrace by the river and serves a lighter style of food but very good.