I was dead on my feet on Wednesday night (two weeks ago now, whoops) after a fairly hideous few days at work accompanied by crippling back pain, thanks to now being nearly five months pregnant (hence the lack of activity on the blog of late: it’s taken me this long to actually want to eat). All I wanted to do was go home and pass out, but when B suggested stopping for a bite to eat on the way home so that neither of us had to cook, I couldn’t really think of any reason why not. It’s at times like this when a really good local hangout really is the business; we already have one, in fact, a very good one indeed, but sometimes it’s good to break a habit. And so on this occasion, we stopped at Amadeus instead. Continue reading →
In terms of breakfasting, if not also pudding-ing, my favourite time of year has finally arrived. Back in the UK, to eat strawberries on one’s cornflakes is a positive luxury; living in this area, however, surrounded by fruit fields, I can eat them, guilt-free, till they’re coming out of my ears. I’ve honestly never had as good a strawberry as I’ve eaten here in Germany, and good grief are they now available aplenty.
As far as I’m concerned, the sweetest, most succulent strawberries on the planet can be found in Mainz-Drais, where you can pick your own or purchase by the punnet from the pop-up farm shop (or several other locations in and around the village). And aside from eating them whole, straight from the box, this is what I like to do with them…
Well, I’ve been even worse at blogging so far this year than I was last, but having spent January doing our annual no booze, no meat, no sweets regime and been ill and mostly off my food since then (both unheard of and torturous), there hasn’t been much decent eating in to report on, let alone eating out. This week, however, randomly generated a couple of culinary treats.
During this long, grey, miserable winter, in the absence of a good pub with a roaring log fire, a pint (or two) of cloudy scrumpy and a packet of pork scratchings, there’s nowhere I’d rather spend an evening than at a Mainzer Weinstube. Jolly, cheery, cosy and warm, they’re the perfect place to hide from this cold, damp weather with a couple of glasses of wine and a hearty dinner. Mainzers are spoilt for choice for these little wine taverns (we’re not quite so lucky on this side of the river) and, depending on what I fancy, I have a couple of regular favourites. For something a bit special, however, and in terms of consistently excellent and high quality local, seasonal food, as far as I’m concerned, Weinhaus Schreiner’s at the top of the pile. Continue reading →
Green, leafy vegetables being so strongly associated with summer dishes (in my book, at least), I tend to forget how prolific they are during the autumn and winter months, too. There are some wonderful green things around at the moment and at the Wiesbaden farmer’s market as well as in the shops, you can barely move for vast, carpet-like mounds of cabbage, chard and kale. I’ve never had anything much to do with the presently ubiquitous Grünkohl, or curly kale – not for any particular reason – but since a friend mentioned he fancied making kale crisps a few weeks ago, I have barely stopped thinking about the stuff.
I’ve been away on and off for the last few weeks, hence the sporadic blogging, but I’m finally back, hungry and ready for (culinary) action. And during these recent weeks, I have mostly been craving rice and raw fish. Given that my experience of sushi in this particular corner of the planet has, to date, not been particularly positive, I find this is a problematic craving to have: from the tasty but generally mediocre rolls and nigiri at Sakura Sushi (even if they do float round the bar on a flotilla of tiny ships) to the downright offensive at Nordsee (what was I thinking?), I have been thus far been extremely disappointed. I can’t claim to be any kind of a sushi expert: despite Japan having been #1 on my travel list for as long as I can remember, I’ve never actually been; however I have been treated to some incredible sushi in London and let’s face it, it doesn’t take a genius to know if a plate of food is good and fresh. So, despite past local experience lending an air of weighty trepidation to my sushi hunt, I’m not one to ignore a food craving: sushi-hunting I went.
Everything I know about American diners I learned from the movies. I am thus equipped with the knowledge that you can’t have a tab unless you order something; if you sit by the window, you can check your lunch date wasn’t tailed; and that a balloon whisk makes an appropriate substitute for a microphone. Most importantly, however, I know that if you’re at a diner and you’re not eating a burger and a milkshake, you’re not doing it properly. So, forgive me if my expectations for the brand new 05 Diner in Mainz were too high, or if my judgement on a restaurant that’s been open less than a week is harsh: I just found my visit a little disappointing.