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Goldener Hecht

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Steingasse 2 69117 Heidelberg

Like Heidelberg itself, Goldener Hecht (translated as ‘Golden Pike,’ pike as in the fish) is an establishment with a long history.  Since 1717, Goldener Hecht has opened its doors to visitors from around the world.  Today, the colorful murals inside the restaurant and the decorated pages of the menu hint towards the extensive tradition here.  It is said that Goethe himself ventured into this place during one of his visits to Heidelberg and possibly slept there overnight (recorded on the wall).  Images on the walls also depict the Heidelberg flood in 1947, when the Hecht was partly submerged.  Another illustrates a fire that burned the building in 1989.

 

With these dramatic images adorning the walls, the place has a unique and interesting feel.  The dining room itself is homely and inviting.  Wooden tables with carved engravings along with wooden chairs make up the seating arrangements.  Lining the walls is cushioned booth style seating.  Red and white pillows offer added comfort and contribute to the home-style setting.  Selected tables are given the white tablecloth treatment; others are merely equipped with a cloth that streaks down the middle portion of the table.  Wine glasses, turned upside down, await diners at the tables.  Candles are also placed on top.  Various wine bottles sit in different corners all around the restaurant, making it seem a bit more like an Italian restaurant than a traditional German.  There are a few antiques, like old kettles and containers, positioned on shelves adding some décor to the room.  An inner room provides even more seating options.  Written on the walls are some interesting words of wisdom.

On the menu is a mix of familiar and local as well as a few unique dishes.  German and Austrian specialties can be found here at Goldener Hecht.  To start things off, there is a list of appetizers that can also be ordered as a snack in between meals.   A handful of soups are featured, along with a good number of different salads.  Roasted dishes and cuts of Austrian beef and veal highlight the list of main dishes.  Additionally, there are a few vegetarian options.  Small, black chalkboards with the list of desserts are placed on the tables, essentially reminding diners to save room for it.  Sweets include different types of cakes, like Apfelkuchen and Kirschkuchen (cherry cake), as well as an Austrian delight – Kaiserschmarrn.

 

As a main entrée, Leberknödel mit Speckkraut und Kartoffelpüree is liver dumplings served with kraut and mashed potatoes.  Juices from the dumpling form a lake around the three components of the dish, slowly getting soaked up by the cabbage and potatoes.  Two Leberknödel dumplings are served in this dish, topped with chopped chives.  A dollop of mustard provides even more flavor.  The dumplings have a wonderful blend of seasonings that mask the characteristic taste of liver.  Though the liver taste is present, it is not as dominating as one might expect.  Both of the accompaniments pair well with the dumplings.  Fried, sweet onions garnish the mashed potatoes and provide explosions of flavor.  Both the potatoes and kraut are great when eaten in conjunction with the gravy sauce.  A few black peppercorns can be found in the kraut.

The different elements in this dish combine together wonderfully and create an outstanding grouping of flavors and textures.  The mashed potatoes are slightly chunky and creamy; the liver dumplings a somewhat soft texture, like meatloaf; the kraut providing a mild crunch.

 

The featured dessert on the menu is Kaiserschmarrn – a confection consisting of sweet pancake with raisins, dusted with powdered sugar on top.  Delicate and fluffy, Kaiserschmarrn is a traditional Austrian dessert rarely appearing on menus in German restaurants.  To find it here at the Goldener Hecht is an absolute treat.  Served on a fine silver platter, the light dish is accompanied by a delicious plum compote that strikes a fine balance between sweet and sour.  The pancake itself has a fluffy, light texture comparable to perfectly cooked scrambled eggs.  The powdered sugar enhances the flavor of the dish extremely well, rendering the compote almost unnecessary.  However, the plum sauce adds such a novel boost of flavor to the dish.  Plums are plentiful in the compote.  It is served cold and strikes a nice contrast to the warm pancake.

At 7,30 €, the Kaiserschmarrn may seem a tad overpriced for a dessert item.  However, the dish can be easily shared amongst two people.  Eaten alone, Kaiserschmarrn is quite filling and can even be enough for lunch.  Considering the rarity of such a dish in this area, it is definitely worth a taste.

Service is fairly good here.  The female servers wear traditional dirndl dresses underneath their aprons, which add to the authenticity of the German dining experience.  Some of the wait staff members manage to maintain a welcoming smile despite the frenzy in the front of the house; others may not be so warm and hospitable.  Food arrives in an acceptable amount of time.

With its ideal corner location directly off of the Old Bridge, Goldener Hecht draws many diners to its establishment, tourists and locals alike.  The menu is a mixture of regional and national German dishes that are sure to meet any diner’s needs.

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Summary:

Situated facing Heidelberg’s historic Old Bridge, Goldener Hecht is a German restaurant and hotel serving up traditional German and Austrian cuisine in a comfortable, rustic dining atmosphere.  Good service.  Outdoor tables make up a relatively small beer garden that overlooks the grand entrance to the Old Bridge – an ideal spot to sit down and people watch, while having a delicious meal.  Prices moderate.

Hours: Monday – Friday: Noon3:00 PM, 6:00 PMMidnight
Saturdays and Sundays: NoonMidnight

 

Overall – 4.5 stars

  • Leberknödel mit Speckkraut und Kartoffelpüree – 4.5/5
  • Kaiserschmarr’n mit Zwetschgenröster – 5/5
  • Service – 5/5

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http://www.goldener-hecht-heidelberg.eu/

Written by geschmack

July 20th, 2010 at 11:24 pm

Heidelberger Schnitzelhaus Alte Münz

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Heidelberger Schnitzelhaus Alte Münz 

Neckarmünzgasse 10 69117 Heidelberg

So you find yourself exhausted and hungry after climbing back down from the Heidelberg castle, walking across the old bridge, and taking pictures next to the monkey.  Sure, you can easily stop by one of the pricey restaurants along the Hauptstraße or stop by a kebab joint for a quick meal.  But maybe you feel like eating something traditional German.  Well, Schnitzelhaus might be the perfect antidote to satisfy that rumbling tummy!

Inside, the Schnitzelhaus might look like an old bar joint.  The place is dark and lit by candles at each table.  There are roughly 7 big wooden tables, with a mix of booth and chair seating. Reservations may be required for dinner.

At first glance, the menu can be quite overwhelming.  Not because it is written in German – they also have an English menu available.  The difficulty lies in actually choosing what to order!  I mean, the menu clearly states that they have “more than 100 different varieties of schnitzels!”  In fact, there are exactly 101 assorted kinds with traditional styles like Wiener, Jaeger, and Rahm Schnitzel to more exotic flavors such as Chilischnitzel, Thai style, Mole sauce, and Hawaiian style, just to name a few.  You can spend hours trying to decide which one to try!

 

Deciding to go the safe route (after all, it is Germany!), I decided on the Weltmeisterschnitzel (‘World Champion’ Schnitzel) cooked Jaeger style, with mashed potatoes instead of fries.  Be forewarned!  If you choose to go the Weltmeisterschnitzel route, be prepared for a lot of chewing!  The description for this dish states that it is only meant for those who are really hungry.  No kidding!

All meals come with a small plate of salad featuring lettuce, shredded carrots, corn, some sauerkraut, and a boatload of dressing.  The vegetables were typical fair, but the sauerkraut added an extra unique element to the salad.  Good, but not great.

The schnitzel and mashed potatoes arrived shortly afterwards.  Portions sizes were unbelievable.  The Weltmeister order gives you 4 hefty, well breaded and seasoned schnitzel pieces.  Jaeger style coats the schnitzel in a luscious cream sauce and a healthy amount of mushrooms adorning the pork.  Moreover, chopped parsley is strewn around the dish, completing the wonderful presentation.  The schnitzel was already dressed with lemon juice, so it was a bit sour for my tastes.  The initial bites were marvelous – moist and tender pork.  Absolute bliss.  Most of the pork was delicious, although I did run into cuts that were tough to chew.  Hard to believe, but the schnitzel was overshadowed by the mashed potatoes.  They were whipped and creamy – definitely worth substituting for fries.

 

At 14,90 euros, the Weltmeisterschnitzel is definitely a winner.  If you manage to finish the entire plate, you will surely feel like a champion!

 

I also tried a little bit of the Käsespätzle (8,90 euros) designed for vegetarians.  It also came with a side salad.  The spätzle was delicate and creamy.  Very rich with the amount of cheese introduced to the dish.  The grilled onions on top made the dish come together extremely well.  A nice alternative to the schnitzel dishes.

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Summary:

Schnitzelhaus Alte Münz is a moderately priced German restaurant near the Alte Brücke (Old Bridge) serving over 100 different varieties of schnitzel.  They also sell beer mugs and t-shirts with their restaurant logo.

Hours: Monday to Friday: 5 PM – Midnight
             Saturday, Sunday, Holidays: 11 AM – Midnight
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Overall – 5 stars

  • Weltmeisterschnitzel (Jaeger) – 4.5/5
  • Mashed Potatoes – 5/5
  • Käsespätzle – 5/5
  • Service – 5/5

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Written by geschmack

October 26th, 2009 at 11:55 pm

Le Café: Das Dürkheimer Kaffeehaus

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Le Café Das Dürkheimer Kaffeehaus  Le Café Das Dürkheimer Kaffeehaus Entrance

Kurbrunnenstraße 9 67098 Bad Dürkheim

This enchanting German restaurant in the city of Bad Dürkheim offers a relatively small menu of various breakfast foods, traditional German cuisine, and a vast assortment of mouth watering deserts.  It is a great place to stop by, sit down, and enjoy the beautiful weather.

Upon entering the restaurant, you are immediately drawn to the counter where there are various cakes and delectable desserts (including cheesecake!).  I visited this place today with a few friends after visiting the wine festival at the Dürkheimer Wurstmarkt.  We sat outside, behind the restaurant, where they have quite a few tables available.

Bandnudeln mit Lachs-Dill-Crème Fraîche_M

I ordered a glass of water and Bandnudeln mit Lachs-Dill-Creme fraiche (noodles in a salmon- dill Crème fraîche sauce).  It was absolutely delicious.  There were numerous pieces of salmon scattered on top of thick Fettuccine type noodles, served in a rich, creamy white sauce.  The fish was delicately cooked to perfection.  Wonderful texture.  The dill made the dish come together superbly.  There was also chopped parsley garnished over the dish.  Everything joined together in harmony, making my stomach completely satisfied.  It was the best dish I have eaten in Germany so far.

For the price of 8,90 EUR, this dish was absolutely worth it.  I could have ordered some dessert, but I didn’t want to lose the taste of the noodles and salmon in my mouth.  It was that good!

I would definitely come back to this place for more!

 

Summary:

A beautiful restaurant offering a relatively small selection of German cuisine.  Small selection, but done really well!  Also have breakfast items.  Outdoor seating available.  Restrooms quite clean.

Overall – 5 Stars

  • Noodles in Salmon-Dill Crème Fraîche sauce – 5/5
  • Service – 4.5/5

http://www.lecafe-duew.de/

Written by geschmack

September 12th, 2009 at 5:00 pm

Posted in Bad Dürkheim

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