A culinary journey through Germany reveals even more depth than you imagined, from an abundance of wine to a wealth of Michelin-starred restaurants. Whet your appetite with these incredible facts about dining in Germany.
Prost! With 5,000 kinds of beer, there’s no shortage of ways to kick back with a classic brew. Oktoberfest in Munich is one of 9,900 beer festivals in Germany to select from. We also recommend visiting Cologne for Kölsch, a top-fermented beer served in a cylindrical Stange glass. Prefer drinking wine? Among 2,300 wine festivals in the country, Wurstmarkt in the town of Bad Dürkheim is the world’s largest — thousands of wine lovers gather every September to sip and celebrate. Among 1,500 types of sausage made in Germany, Thüringer Bratwurst is a national treasure — roasted over charcoal and served with local mustard. This recipe has been a closely kept secret among about 3,000 local butchers for more than six centuries.
Of course, you’re familiar with German pretzels, but did you know that there are 3,200 types of bread made throughout the nation? It’s such an intrinsic part of the country that UNESCO has included German Bread Culture on its list of Intangible Cultural Heritage. Generations of bakers rely on local grains like rye and spelt to keep their shelves stocked with freshly made breads.
Germany is now the ninth-largest wine producer in the world. Spanning 13 regions, 80,000 wine producers showcase locally renowned varietals from sweet white Riesling to light red Spätburgunder (better known as Pinot Noir). A must for every traveler: sipping wine among castles and fortresses in the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Middle Rhine Valley.
Can you imagine 600 varieties of cheese? Germany is the largest cheese-producing country in Europe, 75 percent of which is made in Bavaria. We can create an entire journey centered on this delicacy when you follow a cheese route. The Allgäu Cheese Route is especially breathtaking as it runs nearly 100 miles through tiny Alpine villages dotted with small dairies where samples and workshops abound.
Prepare your palate for fine dining as Germany boasts 300 Michelin-starred restaurants. While many of these culinary superstars are centered in cosmopolitan hubs, you can also find amazing food in smaller villages. Incredibly, the tiny Black Forest town of Baiersbronn has three Michelin-starred restaurants.