Review: Curry Kartell – could this be Wiesbaden’s new Currywurst king?

Curry Manafaktur has long been the leading Currywurst outlet in Wiesbaden.  Located on Römertor and also appearing twice a week at the farmers’ market at the Marktplatz, they do a consistently roaring trade of excellent, regionally-produced sausages, Belgian-made sauces and freshly-packaged (as opposed to frozen) chips to a loyal brigade of happy customers.

Various other Currywurst joints have come and gone in the time I’ve been here, from Curry Papst on Goldgasse, whose late night DJs and wildly flashing lights couldn’t do enough to keep the customers coming, to The Best Worscht* in Town, who positioned itself laughably close to Curry Manufaktur, covered its sausages in curry powder rated on a scale of zero (“because you find yourself too hot already”) to “Fucking Burning Injection”, and promptly closed back down.  It seems that Wiesbaden likes its Currywurst done in style.

Taking all this into account, you’d think that anyone opening a new fast food restaurant in town might think twice about making it a Currywurst joint.  Unless of course, they think they’re really in with a chance of stealing Curry Manufaktur‘s crown.

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A Final Weekly Shop: Autumn is coming and changes are afoot

Ah, Autumn.  Paler skies, cooler air, darker evenings and one or two falling leaves; I probably say this at the beginning of every change in season – and I’ll admit it’s largely to do with the excitement of all the new food ahead – but Autumn really is my favourite season of all.  Bright orange pumpkins are already popping up all over town, and there are figs and cabbages and heaps of ripe plums at the market; soon it will be time for wild boar and venison, and then mulled wine and Christmas biscuits.  But I’m getting a ahead of myself…

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The Ultimate Guide to German Sausages, Part 1:

10 of the best-loved Brühwürste (scalded sausages)

Think of Germany, and many a stereotypical image – probably of beer, Lederhosen and Schnitzel – springs to mind.  But there’s another image that probably gets there before the rest, and that’s of a lovingly grilled, mustard-slathered sausage.  And not without good reason: the Germans each consume an average of 60kg of sausages per year, some 18kg more than the rest of us (source). Boiled for breakfast, curried for lunch, sliced for supper, there’s almost nothing they won’t do with a Wurst.

There’s estimated to be over 1500 different types of sausages in Germany which is, of course, far beyond the number I could list here, but in this three-part series I’ll cover all the classics plus some traditional meaty treats that you may well never have heard of.  It’s a short yet detailed guide that will hopefully help you to decipher the odd menu and provide some assistance when you’re standing, overwhelmed by choice, at the butcher’s counter!

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The Weekly Shop: a whisky hut, a Weinstube and a lot of wedding wine

I’m absolutely exhausted after the most brilliant weekend spent celebrating the marriage of my (German) husband’s sister to a cracking English fellow.  On Thursday we travelled to Oppenheim, the small town perched on top of a hill overlooking the river Rhine in which my father-in-law grew up.  We wandered around the town and its surrounding vineyards before leading a merry brigade of very international wedding guests into the labyrinth of underground medieval tunnels in which my husband played as a child (they’re now open to the public), finishing up the evening with a few rings of Fleischwurst and a bottle or two of wine in the beautiful candle-lit cellar of a very hospitable relative.

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The Weekly Shop: home again from my French travels (with a very full belly)

Please allow me a moment to divert from the wonderful world of German food.  Having spent the last two and a half weeks driving all the way down to the Mediterranean coast and back again, I would just like to take a moment to say, oh France, how I love you.  My husband, the Mini Dietz and I travelled through Lorraine, Burgundy and breathtakingly beautiful Auvergne as well as all over Languedoc-Roussillon, stopping overnight in all sorts of wonderful locations, from chateaus to pig farms to converted barns as well as hotels and b&bs.  The meals we ate, the food markets we shopped at, the sunshine we sat in, the water in which we splashed: all of it was absolute heaven.  This site is unfortunately not the place for my French travel recommendations, however, so if you’d like any tips then please get in touch – I’ll be only too happy to share them!

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Seasonal Eating Guide: What to Eat in August

Blackberry cakes with lemon mascarpone icing
Blackberry cakes with lemon mascapone icing by Emma Raphael @ A Bavarian Sojourn

I was very glad to discover, returning to Wiesbaden yesterday afternoon from our holiday in France, that the worst of the summer heat appears to be over: I’m not good with sticky, sweaty weather, and the regular thunderstorms do very little to break the stifling humidity.  On the plus side, either the sun or the rain or a combination of both seem to do absolute wonders for fruit production: there are huge piles of all kinds of plums stacked up all over town.  So without further ado, here are a few sweet and savoury recommendations for what to eat in August.

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4 of Germany’s Greatest Cakes!

Käsekuchen

The Germans enjoy, as they say, not just the usual three meals a day, but a luxurious fourth one too: there’s Kaffee und Kuchen – coffee and cake.  Any day of the week you can walk into a Konditorei (cake shop) mid afternoon and discover just about any sort of person you can think of enjoying a hot cup of coffee alongside a (very) thick slice of cake.  And in Germany, there are so very, very many cakes to choose from.  A peek into even the smallest of Konditorei curved glass counters reveals a mind boggling range of cakes and sweets, from vast gateaus and Strudels to truffles and petit fours.  But for me, there are 4 greater than all the rest.  What follows here are to my mind, the four greatest German cakes of all…

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The Weekly Shop: southern French sunshine and probably, at some point, snails

Greetings from Languedoc-Rousillon in the south of France, where the sky is bright blue and the sun is shining on a lunch-table laden with fresh baguettes and unsalted butter, goats’ cheeses and thick, cured sausages flavoured with porcini mushrooms.  My husband B, the Mini Dietz and I travelled down here together by car last week, stopping overnight along the way to stay at a crumbling old chateau, an organic pig farm and a friend’s beautiful house north-east of Toulouse.

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The five best restaurants for lunch in Wiesbaden

If you’re lucky to have an hour or so to sit down and enjoy a bite to eat in the middle of the day, whether it’s with colleagues, friends or just on your own, finding a good lunch in Wiesbaden is, in my opinion, trickier than it should be – especially if you’re after something that isn’t a gloopy salad or something akin to brunch (which I mostly can’t eat because it tends to heavily feature bread).  There are an awful lot of places to choose from in the centre of town but, from my experience, not an awful lot of really good ones.  For this reason, it’s taken me a long time to collect a staple of places I enjoy eating at where the food is tasty as well as good value, and so I’m going to share my top lunch picks with you here.

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The Weekly Shop: Fake Fish

It’s been a tricky couple of weeks chez Dietz but culinarily speaking, I’ve still managed to be wildly spoilt, so I really shouldn’t complain.  There’s been a lunch of freshly-caught trout from a fantastic fish restaurant in the middle of the forest; my husband’s version of Saltimbocca all Romana (veal with parma ham and sage); and a huge mound of perfect purple plums dropped off by my mother-in-law.  I’ve contentedly experimented with my terrific Lebanese cookbook; and been treated to home-cooked Italian food by a new friend who brought Pesce Finto to a playdate (what a brilliant group of mums I’ve fallen in with):  “false fish” is a potato, tuna, sardine and caper dish served cold from a fish-shaped mould and it’s absolutely delicious – fishy, salty and rather refreshing.

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