j. spent more than 7 years living in germany before i met him, and understandably he was very excited for me to visit his adopted homeland. i, on the other hand, couldn’t have been less enthusiastic. of all the european countries, we were going to spend lots of time in stuttgart and frankfurt — delightful. starting out in heidelburg probably wasn’t the best choice either which i felt is just too touristy (he thinks, or maybe rather thought of, this is the perfect date city) but as our trip continued i grew increasingly fond of the scenery and especially the food which i couldn’t believe. for scenery, i totally loved füssen with its bright blue lake with a backdrop of the alps, and the breakfasts were excellent (i cannot say the same for the dinners). muesli, thick yogurt, fresh fruit and then these dark breads, cheeses and hams all made for a great start.
then we headed to munich, and i went to my first beer garden. it was a revelation. i loved being outside. i loved the beers, especially the wheat and other lighter beers. and i loved the snacks. so while it is not terribly hard to get great beer in new york these days — with stores like brouwerij lane and grab – it is harder to recreate that biergarten experience. although there isn’t much outside to speak of (at least on our visit), in all other ways der schwarze kölner fit the bill. not too fancy, excellent german beer and tasty tidbits.
j and i visited der schwarze kölner during its very early days. no real plates as of yet (we got paper), and not much food either but what they had was good and the place was bustling. although there wasn’t much food, there was plenty of beer to choose from. among their list of about 40 different beers, they had bottles of reissdorf and sünner and wheat beers like hofbräu kindl weiβ. there are six on tap wheats and another five pilsners (like jever and bitburger). j had a weihenstephaner kristall, and i had the kolsch gaffel on tap. der schwarze kölner also had a couple nonalcholic options like clausthaler and schlenkeria marzn. always a nice touch!
the bratwurst we had that night was excellent, grilled, popping out of its skin and extremely juicy. the pretzels were not quite up to snuff, a bit too hard but maybe we need to check them out again. since our visit, more food has made its way onto der schwarze kölner’s menu including a currywurst sandwich (bratwurst with curry ketchup), a gouda roll and a few other meat and cheese options. nothing fancy but definitely enough. der schwarze kölner, 710 fulton street near greene avenue, brooklyn, new york.