Kaffee und Kuchen at Café Decker in Staufen, Germany

Last weekend we nipped across the Rhine to give our friends from Beaujolais a little taste of the Black Forest. After an impressive lunch at the Kreuz-Post in Staufen (it’s going into Eating Out in Alsace, Basel and Baden sharpish) followed by a quick raid on the Christmas market and a visit to the Schladerer… Continue reading Kaffee und Kuchen at Café Decker in Staufen, Germany

Papet Vaudois: an irresistible Swiss sausage, leek, potato and cream combo

This week I was down in Geneva to sign copies of Cheese: Slices of Swiss Culture at Helen Stubbs’s delightful little shoebox of a bookshop, OffTheShelf, staying overnight with friends in nearby Nyon. While waiting for the train back to Basel, I wandered down the rue de la Gare and found no fewer than three… Continue reading Papet Vaudois: an irresistible Swiss sausage, leek, potato and cream combo

A Taste of Pinot Noir

“Pinot needs constant care and attention. You know? And in fact it can only grow in these really specific little tucked away corners of the world. And, and only the most patient and nurturing of growers can do it, really. Only somebody who really takes the time to understand Pinot’s potential can then coax it… Continue reading A Taste of Pinot Noir

Württemberg Wines: Worth a Detour

Okay, time for a quick and dirty geography lesson (with apologies to my German readers): Baden-Württemberg is the German Land (state) just across the Rhine from us in Alsace. It’s a prosperous place, home of Daimler, Porsche, Zeiss and a whole bunch of Mittelstand companies, backbone of the German economy. Northerners come down here to… Continue reading Württemberg Wines: Worth a Detour

Is the Auberge de l’Ill Over the Hill?

Plenty of people in Alsace – myself included – have a sort of emotional investment in the Auberge de l’Ill. It’s there, within easy reach, for when we feel a birthday or an anniversary celebration coming on, or just for a classy, companionable lunch. It’s a bit like having a much-loved Granny nearby. She lives… Continue reading Is the Auberge de l’Ill Over the Hill?

Time to Make Sloe Gin

The sloe (Prunus spinosa) is a prickly beast. In order to brave the dangers of picking its bloomy fruit, it helps to understand the wonders of sloe gin. Faithfully brewed in the pantries of English country houses since Victorian times, this wonderful drink (known in our family, and doubtless many others, as ‘sluggins’) is a… Continue reading Time to Make Sloe Gin