Eat your way through the German countryside this month
By Kristy Alpert
THE TRAILS AND PATHWAYS are well worn in Germany, where hikers seek to conquer the Palatinate Forest by foot, hike the hilltops in the Eifel mountain range or wander the Weinstrasse and its rolling vineyards. But you won’t find them munching on trail mix this month. In September, hikers swap slender walking sticks for stemmed wine glasses to take part in the Kulinarische Wanderungen (culinary hikes) held throughout the country.
The hikes offer a chance for locals and visitors to get out with friends and family and taste the delicious regional specialties served along marked paths. In Rodenbach (22 miles east of Frankfurt), hikers start on a four-mile culinary circuit that winds uphill and downhill and offers eight stations for tasting the region’s specialties (like cheese boards filled with farm-fresh goat cheese, barbecued pork and small producer wines). In the Schmallenberger Sauerland, each stop along the way acts as one stage of a five-course gourmet menu showcasing the flavors of North Rhine-Westphalia. Wander. Eat. Repeat.
WHERE TO MAKE A WANDERUNGEN THIS MONTH
- SCHLUCHSEE (BLACK FOREST) Sept. 6 and Oct. 4
- BLIESGAU (SAARLAND) Sept. 10
- RODENBACH (HESSE) Sept. 17 and 18
- THE “BLACK CROSS” ROUTE IN FREINSHEIM (RHINELAND PALATINATE) Sept. 24
- SCHMALLENBERGER SAUERLAND (NORTH RHINE WESTPHALIA) Sept. 24 and Oct. 4
- OBERKIRCH (BADEN-WUERTTEMBERG) Sept. 27