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Saturday, October 31, 2015

Auberge des Trois Chateaux

From Turkheim, we drove to Eguisheim and spent the night.

Our hotel was the Auberge des Trois Chateaux, which was on Grand Rue, in the center of town. 

Our room had a great view of the central square. Fortunately, there wasn't much street noise.

The room wasn't as historic as the Hotel St. Martin in Colmar but at €66.66, it was a great deal. The hotel had free wifi, free parking across the street and a restaurant.

The bathroom was modern.

2015 09 21

Friday, October 30, 2015

Thursday Night Dinner

Another Thursday Night Dinner at Flavor Bistro--4 courses for $24.95 with wine pairing.

Tortino Di Granchio--Sautéed Dungeness Crab Cake, Basil Aioli & Crispy Shoestring Yams, paired with 2013 St. Francis Winery & Vineyards Chardonnay, Sonoma

Gnocchi Alla Savor--Handmade Potato Pillows Served in Chicken-Sausage Ragù, Topped with Roasted Mushrooms & a Trio of Cheeses, paired with 2013 Preston Farm & Winery Cinsault (Organic), Dry Creek Valley

Agnello Alla Griglia--Grilled Lavender Lamb Garnished with Ragoût of Fingerling Potatoes, Arugula, Oven Dried Tomatoes & Eggplant Served in Zinfandel Reduction Sauce, paired 2012 Turley Wine Cellars Old Vines Zinfandel (Organic), California

Tiramisù E Tartufi Di Cioccolato Espresso Lady Fingers Layered with Rum Flavored Mascarpone 
Cream Garnished with Homemade Chocolate Truffles, paired with 2011 Bonterra Vineyards Late Harvest Muscat, Bartolucci Vineyard (Organic), Lake County

2015 10 29

Thursday, October 29, 2015


Turkheim, another Decapolis town, is 7.4 km west of Colmar. We drove there from Riquewihr. It is not as touristy as Riquewihr, yet it still has its charms. Pick up a map from the TI and follow the walking tour. It takes about an hour

The France Gate--one of the entrances to the town. There is parking just to the right of the gate.

Guard House--each evening at 10 pm from May 1 to October 31, the night crier leads a tour of town, beginning at the Guard House. The tour is given in Alsatian and French.

Tower next to St. Anne's Church. Notice the colorful tiles.

The Brand Gate--another entrance to the town. 

The Munster Gate.

Scallop shell, indicating the route of the Camino de Santiago. The route to Santiago de Campostelo and the tomb of St. James even passed through here.

2015 09 21

Wednesday, October 28, 2015


We ended up driving to Riquewihr, which was 6.7 km and 16 minutes away. This town was crowded with huge tour groups.

We entered the town at the Hotel de Ville and followed Rick Steves' tour. You can also pick up a map with a tour of town at the TI.

Hotel de Ville with flags of Europe, France & Alsace.

Benches designed for ladies with loads on their heads, found outside the Hotel de Ville 

The town gourmet lived at #42 on Rue de General de Gaulle, Riquewihr's main street. The word "gourmet" originated in France. The gourmet facilitated sales, set prices, appraised and judged wine until the 1930s. To judge the wine, he needed fine food to complement the wine. The gourmet was appointed by the town.

The nails on timber were designed to hold stucco. In the 18th and 19th centuries, half-timbered houses were "low class," so owners stuccoed over the wood to make it look like a stone house.

The Dolder--watch tower and upper gate of the town

The other entrance to town at the top of town.

2015 09 21

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Lunch in Kaysersberg

Back in Kaysersberg, it was now 1:30 pm. I really wanted to eat at Restaurant La Vieille Forge but they were already full.

They had a wonderful menu. Note to self: look for lunch earlier to get the restaurant of your choice. I think you should be seated by 12:30 pm.

Instead, we ate here.

Quiche Lorraine with salad--€7.90.

L'Escalope de Veau Viennoise (wienerschnitzel) with fries & salad--€17.30.

2015 09 21

Monday, October 26, 2015

Walking to Riquewihr

From Kaysersberg we tried to walk to Riquewihr, which was just 5 km north. It was supposed to take about 1 3/4 hour but we got terribly lost since we didn't have a map of the valley. 

We started at the castle in Kaysersberg and followed a trail through the vineyards. We could see Kientzheim in the distance. 

Initially, there were signs pointing to Riquewihr but then the signs were replaced with hiking symbols. Since we didn't know which route we were supposed to take, we chose the route through the woods instead of the one along the road. Big mistake! The route took us uphill and then back to Kaysersberg.

Lesson learned: ask the TI for a detailed hiking map and the route to Riquewihr.

2015 09 21

Sunday, October 25, 2015


Just 10 km northwest of Colmar is Kaysersberg, another adorable Alsatian town. Albert Schweitzer was born here.

The Hotel de Ville houses the TI, which has town and valley maps and rents audio guides for touring Kaysersberg (€5). We just followed Rick Steves' tour along with the free town map, which outlined a walking tour.  

Inside the Church of the Holy Cross (Ste. Croix Church).

Even though the church was built in the 13th century, the statues on the tympanum (carved relief over the door) are crude. This figure is supposedly the architect of the church.

Half-timbered house typical of Alsace.

The Kaysersberg Bridge, which spans the Weiss River, was spared destruction during WWII when the townspeople agreed to dig an anti-tank ditch just beyond the bridge.

The castle (or chateau), a 10-minute walk uphill from Kaysersberg.

View of the town from the castle.

Another aerial view.

Alsace is known for its kougelhopf--€2. It's a light version of a panettone.

2015 09 21

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Wistub de la Petite Venise, Colmar

Back in Colmar, we made reservations for dinner at Wistub de la Petite Venise.

The restaurant is located at 4 rue de la Poisonnerie.

Amuse bouche of gougere--cheese puffs.

Munster cheese salad--€8

Pork Knuckle with Celeriac Salad--€16.50. This was a huge piece of meat but it was fork tender. I love the celeriac salad--crunchy with a tangy mayo sauce.

Choucroute--€16.50. Choucroute is the specialty of Alsace. It's a big plate of sauerkraut topped with meat and sausages. This is big enough for 2 people to share. I could only eat this once during our stay in Alsace. It's way too much meat.

2015 09 20

Friday, October 23, 2015

Thursday Night Dinner

Here's this week's Thursday Night dinner at Flavor Bistro. Still $24.95 for 4 courses with wine pairing.

Gamberoni Con Fagioli--Grilled Marinated Jumbo Prawns in Brodetto Di Vino Bianco Flavored with Organic Toy Box Tomatoes, Sweet Basil, Garlic & Cannellini Beans, paired with 2013 A to Z Wineworks Chardonnay, Oregon. The sauce was rich and thick.

Pasta Al Savor--Homemade Pasta Served in Prosciutto Sauce, Escarole, Finished with Ricotta & Walnut Gremolata, paired with 2013 Tenuta Sant'Antonio Scaia Corvina I.G.T., Veneto, Italy. Loved the prosciutto sauce.

Bistecca Ai Ferri--Grilled Marinated Flat Iron Steak Garnished with Stone Oven Roasted Treviso, Balsamic Glaze, Garlic Candy, Sweet Corn Passata in Sage Brown Butter, paired with 2013 Alexander Valley Vineyards Redemption Zinfandel, Dry Creek Valley. Delicious rare steak over sweet passata.

Crostata Di Mela Cotogna--Organic Caramelized Quince Galette Garnished With Vanilla Custard Cream, paired with 2010 Oberon Late Harvest Moscato, Napa Valley

2015 10 22

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Lunch at Hotel Du Mouton, Ribeauville

We started looking for lunch at 1:30 pm. Most places were already full. We found an outdoor table at Hotel Du Mouton, located at 5 Place de la Sinne, just off the Grand Rue.

La Salade Gourmande--€19. This was a huge salad with foie gras, smoked salmon, smoked ham, shrimp, chicken gizzard and smoked duck breast.

Le Coq au Riesling with Spaetzle--€15.90. This was a specialty of the region and was quite good.

But then again, I may be prejudiced since I love spaetzle.

2015 09 20

Wednesday, October 21, 2015


After finishing our tour of Colmar, we drove to Ribeauville, 21 km north of Colmar. It's on the Rue du Vin, a wine route that runs for 90 miles through Alsace.

Ribeauville is an adorable town with a long pedestrian street through the center of town.

Winegrowers' Fountain--located in front of the TI.

The main street in town--the Grand Rue, with the Butchers' Tower in the center of the town. The tower was built in 1290 and separates the "Old Town" from the "Middle Town."

At the top of the town are trails that lead to 3 castle ruins in the Vosges Mountains.

Town Hall is the site of the weekly market. On the day we visited, there was a book fair.

Pfifferhuss or Minstrels' Inn was built in the 17th century and once housed the town's fief-playing minstrels. The minstrels paid a tax to the lord of the town for protection.

Just outside of town (from the TI, walk south to the traffic circle) is the Cave de Ribeauville—France’s oldest winegrowers’ cooperative, founded in 1895. It has a viniculture museum and free tastings of its wines, made with all seven of the grape varieties grown in Alsace

2015 09 20