November 13, 2023

The French triangle day 4: picturesque Alsatian town

Pin It

Got up for an early start this morning as we're headed out of the city for a tour down south. I needed a quick breakfast, so I hit Café Stein just next to the apartment for a croissant beurre and a bretzel. Neither was anything to write home about, but I didn't want to be doing a wine tasting on an empty stomach...

First stop of the day was Maison Trimbach, which is one of my favorite wineries. I'm so glad I finally made it here, and for a tasting with Jean Trimbach, too! Tasting notes from the visit are here.

Jean advised us not to be late to our lunch at La Grappe d'Or or madame would be upset, so we rushed off to Riquewihr and walked over on the cobblestone streets. Now that I've had a taste of what Alsatian portions are like, I decided to share an entrée with Mr. Christmas:

I didn't want to drink much at lunch, but couldn't resist ordering a kir royale with some crémant d'Alsace.

Cocotte de munster chaud en croûte de sésame, brioche maison et salade mêlée - well, we ARE in Alsace so it's only natural that I have some Munster.

Melted Munster on brioche is just awesome.

Jambonneau "braisé" pommes de terre sautées - I decided that I must have a whole pig trotter all to myself while I'm in the region, and while this was braised and not grilled, the end result wasn't too different. Of course, I also love the pan-fried sliced potatoes.

I love how the meat is cured to give it flavor, and also deliver a firmer texture. I did manage to finish all the meat off the bone, but could only handle less than half of the potatoes...

Yes, there was a salad that came with the dish... just to balance things out a little.

Since none of us have visited the picturesque town before, we decided to stroll around and check out the sights. Many of the buildings on either side of rue de Général de Gaulle were in the classic style of colombage.

Right in the middle of town we find Maison "Hugel", another famed winery whose wines I also collect. Not havng made a prior appointment with anyone, I didn't think we would be able to taste anything interesting or special... I also didn't think they would have anything old or rare for sale in the tasting room, so I actually didn't bother walking in! I did, however, check out Boutique vini just next door and managed to find a really rare bottle of - you guessed it - Hugel!

It's mid-November and all of France is getting ready for the Christmas season, which makes it the perfect time to visit Féerie de Noël, a store that sells nothing but Christmas decorations all year round. From outside, one has absolutely no idea how big the store is, as there's another level underground.

I really enjoyed walking around this picturesque little town, even though the weather wasn't great for photography. It's just so far removed from the concrete jungle of Hong Kong and other big cities in Asia.

It was getting a little late but Mr. Christmas wanted to hit Domaine Marcel Deiss in Bergheim. We didn't end up tasting any wines but he did make a purchase. The labels have gotten very pretty - more artistic than before.

We headed back north for dinner, and we were one of the first customers to walk into Taverne de l'Ackerland in Handschuheim. This place is apparently famous for their flammekueche, also known in French as tarte flambée. I was really excited to finally try this.

But first I have to try an entrée that Mr. Christmas ordered last night. If you see salade mixte on a restaurant menu in Alsace and order it thinking it's a "mixed salad", you'll be in for a shock. This dish is actually not much more than a pile of grated Gruyère (or Emmental) strips tossed with vinaigrette, plus a few halves of cervelas that have been scored. The version here, in fact, is already more fancy because they've added some diced onions and parsley on the Gruyère, along wth a few wedges of tomatoes and slices of radish as garnish.

Tarte flambée normale - the "regular" version comes with onions and lardons.

How could this not be tasty when you've got bacon?!

Tarte flambée gratinée - the difference with the "normale" is the addition of grated cheese on top.

Definitely cheesy and satisfying.

Tarte flambée a l'ail - with garlic and parsley on top of the usual lardons

This was very, very tasty thanks to the abundance of garlic.

Oh, we also got a portion of salade verte...

I was pretty happy and satisfied, with the only regret being not trying their tarte flambée aux grattons because they didn't have any fried pork lard tonight. Sigh...

No comments:


Related Posts with Thumbnails

TripAdvisor Travel Map