Browsing articles tagged with " Gastronomy"

Bitter, aromatic happiness!

Berlin, 1 December 2013

Replies to the question “What did you fancy the most in Berlin?” usually include the East Side Gallery, the Brandenburg Gate, the many parks in town or, from a non-tangible point of view, its fascinating history, noticeable on every corner of the city. Indeed, when back from a trip, we all take a favourite in our backpack of memories.

Travel guides, with limited space, make many eventual favs visible but, at the same time, they keep thousands aside from the visitor’s sight. We at recommend you include in your list of “Not to forget in Berlin” this very special place. Anyone said chocolate? Yumm!

In a corner of Gendarmenmarkt, the most “French-like” square in Berlin, “Fassbender & Rausch” shines in its own right. Far from being an art gallery or the amazing sixth floor of KaDeWe, the department store in Schöneberg, the visitors’ mouth waters in the presence of a hugh variety of tasty, colourful sins. No, it is no art gallery, but it kind of looks like one: through its windows, symbols of Berlin like the Reichstag and the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church can be seen in chocolate, family size…

The Rausch and the Fassbender, who had been in the business of chocolate since 1863, joined forces in the late 20th century. As a result, the current store at the Charlottenstrasse 60 (U2 Stadtmitte), not just a shop where chocolate can be bought, but also a restaurant and a cafeteria. “Chocolate makes you happy” is the motto at “Fassbender & Rausch”, and no doubt this is true for most of us, isn’t it? Bitter, aromatic happiness!

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The Easter colours

Berlin, 25 March 2013

Easter is one of the most traditional festivities in Germany. Letting aside its religious meaning, of course its main meaning for many people, it has become a period of special interest for kids: not only in Germany but in all of the German-speaking areas (Austria and Switzerland mainly), and also in the Netherlands, the Easter Bunny paints and hides colourful eggs, that the children must find at home or in the gardens. The Bunny would be sort of an equivalent of Santa Claus, only this time with the mission of announcing the world the ressurection of Jesus Christ.

If you travel around Germany these days, you will see bunnies and coloured eggs are pretty much everywhere. Munich even used to have a Museum of the Easter Bunny (pic Wikipedia), although the centre was definitely closed back in 2005, after the death of its founder, Manfred Klauda.

Easter markets can be visited all over Germany these days. Two of the most famous in Berlin are on Alexanderplatz (East) and on Breitscheidplatz (West). Even a campfire is on the agenda, on Saturday 30th from 6PM, at the Britzer Gardens. It will definitely be more than welcome, considering the freezing temperatures of this unusual end of March!

Of course, many other German cities offer their stands in tens of markets. In Munich, the Markt der Sinne is a traditional one: this year, it will take place between March 30th and April 1st this year. Check the information about other markets in the 16 regions of the country, through this link:

Also gastronomy is important during the Easter time. Hier you can read many traditional recipes (in German).

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Markets in Germany

Berlin, 12 March 2013

Farmers markets have a long tradition in our world, for they were and still are the place to buy fruits, vegetables, meats and other products, directly from the producers. Also in Germany there are markets, of course, some of which deserve a visit. Let’s go discover some of them?

Photo gallery:

Marheineke is one of the few indoor markets remaining in Berlin, and there are three reasons why we advise you pay a visit to it: good, fresh products are sold inside, the building is nice and it is located in an area packed with restaurants, mainly on Bergmannstrasse (definitely, a reason to visit the place, isn’t it?). The market, that is celebrating its 121st anniversay this week, was almost completely destroyed during WWII, then rebuilt in the fifties and finally modernized back in 2007. The subway line U7 will take you there (Gneisenaustraße station). Would you like to take a glance? Come on in!

Also advisable is the Neukölln turkish market. Every Tuesday and Friday, tens of traders locate their stands on Maybachufer, between the Kottbusserbrücke bridge and the Schinkestrasse: fruits, vegetables, legume, also clothing and accessories, fill up this part of the bank of the Landwehrkanal starting at 11AM until mid-afternoon. Odours, colours and many products you probably will not recognize, for the market is on the border of the Neukölln and Kreuzberg districts, where many of the Turkish “Berliner” live.

If you would like to learnt about other markets in Berlin, check this article published by the Morgenpost: You can also get some information (in German) about markets in the city by clicking here.

Of course, markets are also in other parts of Germany. In Munich, for example, you should see Viktualienmarkt: outdoors, it is located near the central Marienplatz, on the same place where it has been for a bit more than 200 years. There are some 140 stands offering a wide range of products, many of them from Bavaria. Also in hamburg you can see markets, like Marktzeit: it is open every Saturday from 9.30AM till 2.30PM in an old factory (old in “spirit”, because a fire burnt it down back in 1977, having been rebuilt afterwards according to its original design). Finally, in Frankfurt (am Main) you can go to Kleinmarkthalle, which opens Monday through Saturday from 8AM until 6PM (4PM on Saturdays).

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In one word: Oktoberfest!

Berlin, September 3, 2012

Crown Prince Ludwig, later to become King Ludwig I, was married to Princess Therese of Bavaria on October 12,1810. The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate the happy royal event. The fields have been named Theresienwiese (“Theresa’s meadow”) in honor of the Crown Princess ever since, although the locals have since abbreviated the name simply to the “Wies’n”. Horse races in the presence of the Royal Family marked the close of the event that was celebrated as a festival for the whole of Bavaria. The decision to repeat the horse races in the subsequent year gave rise to the tradition of the Oktoberfest (source: Wikipedia)

Cuurrently is the Oktoberfest a mass event that welcomed almost 7 million visitors in 2011! Although most of the “fest” takes part in September, the event has kept its original name. By the way, 24 times within the past two centuries hast been cancelled due to epidemics or wars.

September 22nd on your agenda!

On Saturday 22, the mayor of Munich will open Oktoberfest exactly at 12 noon. Right after the not to forget O’zapft is!, thousands of mugs will start circulating all over the Theresienwiese, and this until October 7 when the “fest” will come to an end. Within 15 days, some 60,000 hectolitres of beer will have been drunk, about 500,000 roast chickens eaten, served by approximately 1,500 waiters on 31 hectares. You would probably love to see and experience it by yourself, right? time to fly to Munich!

Here you can look up a couple things about the agenda for Oktoberfest.


Presence on Facebook:
Web Munich city hall:

Time of Advent… and Glühwein!

Berlin, November 21, 2011

The Weihnachtsmärkte, the Christmas markets, remind us that the Nativity is approaching. In Berlin, most of the markets open starting Nov. 21st. Amongst the most visited ones, the WeihnachtsZauber at Gendarmenmarkt, one of the prettiest squares in town, is a must. Despite the fee of 1 euro (the rest of markets are free), it welcomes over 500,000 visitors every year, offering them not only a wonderful Christmas atmosphere but also live performances on a stage located in front of the Konzerthaus, and of course Glühwein, a not-to-miss at this time of the year.

This at Gendarmenmarkt is only one of the tens the city displays, but not the only one that is worth a visit: the Weihnachtsmarkt vor dem Schloss Charlottenburg, in the gardens of this palace, offers several activities in a programme including music and artistic installations, amongst others. At the Alexanderplatz, the Weihnachtsmarkt vor dem Rotem Rathaus has a ice skating rink around the Neptune Fountain, and also Glühwein, of course!

Less than 200 kilometres away from Berlin, the very old Striezelmarkt makes Dresden well worth a visit, sometime between Nov. 24th and Dec. 24th. Besides the magical atmosphere of one of the oldest Christmas markets in Germany (it takes place since 1434!), the Striezelmarkt is the place to buy and taste the famous Christstolle, a delicious cake originated in the Saxon capital city. The market is located at the Altmarkt, and offers a wide range of activities.

The complete list of Christmas markets in Berlin can be consulted here, and here that with the markets all over Germany!

++The video (in German) offers a stroll through some of the Berliner Weihnachtsmärkte: in Charlottenburg, at the Jewish Museum, inside the Kulturbrauerei and at Alexanderplatz, in front of the city hall.

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