Travel Stories

Four Seasons of Food

It's Not All About Schnitzel and Bier

In Germany, it's not all about schnitzel and bier. For true "foodies," the entire year is full of unique culinary highlights and dishes served only for a short time in the proper season. A visiting traveler can join the Germans and tuck into these specialties.

Spring

Germans everywhere equate the real coming of spring with Spargel (white asparagus). Boiled Spargel is enjoyed by many with just a bit of melted butter, a potato, and a slice or two of ham. During Spargelzeit (asparagas time – May through June), cooks get creative with the delicate stalks, offering Spargel-based pasta, soups, casseroles, and so on. A dry white Riesling rounds out the meal.

Summer

The Germans consider ice cream a meal of its own. The ultimate ice cream creation is the Fürst-Pückler-Eis from Saxony. Named after the garden- and woman-loving Hermann, Prince of Pückler-Muskau (1785-1871), this strawberry, chocolate, and macaroon ice bomb was featured in one of the duke's love letters to an innkeeper's daughter.

Fall

In the wine regions along the Rhine, Mosel, and Main Rivers, the cool evenings of early autumn are perfect for a hot slice of Zwiebelkuchen (onion pie) served up with a frothy glass of Federweißer, wine that's still fermenting, featuring a cloudy appearance and sweet, fruity taste.

Christmas

Stollen (fruitcake) from Dresden, Lebkuchen (gingerbread) from Nuremberg, Baumkuchen (a tower of layered cake rings drizzled with chocolate glaze) from the medieval town of Salzwedel. No German household has Christmas without them.