Last fall l had the chance to get a quick trip in to Germany and Switzerland. It had to be quick due to necessary commitments, but it was a wonderful trip.
The first leg we spent in Munich. We could have gone gallivanting about Germany because there is so much to see and do, but we decided to focus on beautiful München. Why? Well, in part because I had lived in Munich as a young man just out of college. Thus, I wanted to take a good look around and see just how much had changed. I also wanted to share some of the gems I’d discovered previously with my sweetie.
Staying in a hotel close to (but not right at) the Hauptbahnhof allowed us to utilize the outstanding public transportation system to go everywhere. Whether by subway, commuter rail, bus or streetcar, we were able to get to all our destinations. Our hotel was also within easy striking distance of the Altstadt (old city) area that includes the famous Rathaus with it’s glockenspiel, Marienkirche and the many shops and restaurants lining the Fussgängerzone (pedestrian zone) that links Karlsplatz, Marienplatz and Odeonsplatz. Yes, we heard and watched the glockenspiel. We also packed in a visit to the Olympic Center, Olympic Tower and Olympic Village (and my old apartment which was within walking distance). We saw the Nymphenburger Schloss with it’s fascinating history and beautiful gardens. We pondered the amazing collection of art in the Alte Pinakothek museum, part of a group of museums where you could spend days – weeks, even – appreciating the art. We took a stroll around the Englisher Garten and stopped for lunch at the Chinesischer Turm/Chinese Tower. In fact, we had plenty of Bavarian food and beer, dropping in at the Augustiner Keller Beer Garden one evening and the Hofbräuhaus another. And perhaps most enjoyably, we discovered a wonderful pub/restaurant a few blocks from our hotel in a quiet residential neighborhood that served, among other tasty things, Münchner Schnitzel. This was my favorite dish when I lived in Munich! I thought it had perhaps been the specialty of the local restaurant (no longer in existence) where I had first discovered it. Imagine my elation to accidentally rediscover it and be able to share it as well.
With memories of our trip still dancing in my head, it was no surprise that I was drawn toward a German label when considering options for “bubbly” to help celebrate this past holiday season.
Winemaker: Schloss Biebrich
Price: $5.49 at Trader Joe’s
Notes: This effervescent wine was a “barely there” straw with a very apple-y nose which held some citrus notes. It was light-bodied and had good acidity. Alcohol was at 11%. On the flavor side it held what the nose portended – sweet apple with a touch of citrus. I know this is very inexpensive wine, but I was disappointed. Don’t get me wrong: I will drink it again if someone hands me a glass. On the other hand, I probably won’t be buying another bottle.