Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Throw Me Somethin' Sweet Mister

Being the Germanophile that I am, it should come as no great surprise that I love Carnival/Mardi Gras in Germany. In high school, my German class made masks to celebrate (my Budweiser frog mask won me top honors). In college, I experienced traditional Black Forest celebrations complete with wooden masks, torches and dried pig bladders.

To celebrate Rosenmontag last night, I decided to check out Loreley, a German restaurant on the Lower East Side (Rivington between Bowery and Chrystie.) The restaurant got immediate minus points when I was the only one of my friends asked for ID when I ordered a Koelsch (isn’t “beer for one and all” part of the German constitution?) The other un-German part of the beer experience was that they fill the beer glasses over the 0,4L line on the glass (I think there really is a law about that!) Luckily, after the beer brew-haha, things improved. The atmosphere is great—low lighting, exposed brick walls, some of the tables are beer hall style and Cologne stuff decorates the walls.

Now on to the important issue…the quality of the cheese spaetzle. It was shockingly good! The noodles tasted homemade and there was a good balance of cheese and onions. Has it unseated the Schlecker Family recipe? Of course NOT. But if you are curious to taste the dish that I write about so frequently, Loreley would be a great place to try it. A friend who I was in Germany with me said the schnitzel and Nurnberger sausages were not quite authentic, but his non-Germanophile girlfriend liked them and there were lots of Germans in the restaurant—both good signs. Tricia also very wisely pointed out that even mixed salad are orderly in Germany...lettuce on the bottom with toppings and other salads strategically placed on top without any mixing taking place. (I had never thought of it that way!)

While there was no virgin sacrifice, cut neck ties or other similar Carnival debauchery, the restaurant was decorated for the occasion, the Cologne parade was broadcast on a big screen and rousing rounds of Viva Colonia could be heard emanating from the bar.

I will definitely be back for the beer garden in the summer!


Anonymous jp said...

My favorite German drinking song! I'm still known to belt out a couple of rounds of my local adaptation - Viva Franconia - after a Schneiders Weisse or two... or when I'm just feeling nostalgic. :-)

Sounds like a great way to celebrate Rosenmontag. I spent it sleeping after a hard day on the slopes at Heavenly. Not exactly German, but it did bring memories of the Tirolean Alps - albeit with less alp and more lake views.

11:40 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

oohh skiing at Heavenly, fun!! Erica, my good friend who I skied with on Sunday, is moving to San Fran this fall. Maybe we'll have to do a big Heavenly trip next winter!

Yeah, what is it about Viva Colonia that makes it so fun to sing. I downloaded it a few weeks ago. If you are looking for another funny schlager song, download Ue30. The jist of the song is, "I'm over 30...scheiss egal."

7:29 AM  
Blogger Bense said...

As a proud westphalan separatist, I can not recommend the rhenanian food at all ;-) Espacially not the Kölsch *yuck* But I haven't heard of them serving it pint/lager-style.

Anyways, if you're gonna be going to Germany in the future, let me know, I do have friends in Cologne as well :-D

7:02 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

Thanks Bense!

9:15 PM  

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