Thursday, October 16, 2008

Note to self: stop asking for water in restaurants

With my first meal here, the hamburger in the hotel restaurant, I ordered water and they brought me a huge bottle of mineral water. Tonight I went to Restaurant Kartoffelstubb. It is in a great old building with a heavy wood door, wood bar, paneled ceiling and walls, complete with a cuckoo clock. It was cold and rainy outside and warm and cozy inside. It smelled like my grandma’s house on Sunday afternoons. I ordered a beer and a glass of water. I repeated it as “ice water, tap water” complete with hand gestures for turning on a faucet. The waitress nodded each time I said it, “Ya. Vasser. Ya.” and brought me a glass of sparkling mineral water with lime for just 3 euros.

For dinner I ordered the weiner schnitzel that was served with frites unt salat. I was expecting sausages, what with “weiner” in the name and all, but it was actually a couple pieces of pork pressed thin, breaded, and fried. I’m guessing “schnitzel” refers to the breading and/or preparation technique because there were a number of “schnitzels” on the menu.

On the way back to the hotel I stopped off for some Italian ice cream. Rasperry and chocolate. It was great. (Mine is the dark one on the far right.)


Pat Downey said...

If you haven't already, try a "radler" it is half beer and half lemon drink of some kind. Invented in Germany by bicyclist. None of this gatorade stuff for them. I tried it while there and loved it.

Paul Mikos said...

I never found a "radler" but I had a "rauscher" which is a hard apple cider and it was very good.

Mary tells me traditional weiner schnitzel is made with veal, not pork, so it was probably veal that I ate.

Tatiana said...

Yeah, water is pretty hard to come by in Germany (I lived there for awhile). Next time you go, be sure to order "wasser kein gas", pronounced VAAS-ser kyn gas, which literally means water no gas (carbonation), aka non-sparkling or regular water to us good ole Americans. But note that you'll be ordering bottled water nonetheless.

Sometimes they don't even have that. If you are a hard-core water drinker, like me, you can always order "lietungswasser" (not sure if that's spelled right), pronounced LY-toongs VAAS-ser, which means tap water. They'll look at you very weird and ask you to repeat that, if you're sure, etc., etc., a couple of times, though, because they think of it as something akin to sewer water. It really is just tap water, though -- don't let them scare you!

But if you can do without water, and get lemonade, soda, tea, or something else instead, you'll have a much easier time.

Tatiana (Tonya Buell)