Waking up on the ship was a nice feeling. We had a beautiful cabin with french window and I knew that once we’d actually be sailing I’d have fantastic views of the towns all along the way. But, for now, it was off the ship and a bus ride to Regensburg, a town I didn’t know much about.
Arriving a bit early to meet my guide, Elizabeth, we found a great cafe calles Spital just before the Stone Bridge where we all shared a delicious spinach quiche, a spaetzle dish (that was just like mac & cheese) and a fabulous salad. Plus, lots and lots of coffee. Although the sun was shining it was quite chilly out there and I needed what I could to stay warm.
Crossing over the bridge that was built back in the 12th century (it served as a model for London Bridge and others), we came to the prettiest village. Regensburg became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2006, and seeing the well preserved medieval buildings, lanes and many churches, I could understand why. One of the main sites that you just can’t miss is St. Peter’s Cathedral. This huge Gothic structure is noticeable wherever you walk around.
After wandering and gawking for a while it was time to meet Elizabeth at the famous Wurstkuchel (sausage kitchen), the oldest in the world. Thousands of homemade sausages are cooked up each year along with specialty mustards and other Bavarian delights. While this little tavern has become a major tourist stop for every one coming to Regensburg, I’m happy to say it still maintains its sense of tradition and old world charm.
Next on Elizabeth’s line up was something called dampfknudel and she whisked me off to the popular Dampfknudel Uli to try some. These are sweet yeast dough rolls that can either be eaten as a meal along with cabbage or salad, or as a dessert with lots of custard. We had the dessert ones and I was surprised that they were light, fluffy and surprisingly, not too sweet.
I guess this is why we now found ourselves at Cafe Prinzess Conditorei, a family owned coffee house with delicious pastries and chocolates. We indulged in a tasty assortment of incredible chocolates with names like “tender kisses” “love spell” and Don Juan Cannonballs”.
Since mustard is such a major condiment here, what better than to have a mustard tasting and so off we went to sample some at the Handlmaier shop. Handlmeier is the brand of sweet mustard that was created centuries ago by Johanna Handlmaier and in 1964, Louise Handlmaier founded the company that started producing a variety of mustards. I sampled a selection of sweet to hot to super hot ones. All of them were excellent.
Around the corner we came to a shop that was filled with all kinds of heavenly smelling spices. The lovely proprietor gave me a small bag as a gift.
Our final stop in Regensburg before heading back to the ship was to Brauerei Kneitinger restaurant. Elizabeth had arranged for us all to have dinner at this traditional Bavarian establishment and it was very delicious. We had goose, beef and dumplings and washed it all down with some refreshing beer. They have been producing beer for over 150 years keeping production small but steady. Besides the beer we were drinking, there were 6 empty monogrammed beer steins lined up on our table that we later found out were gifts for each of us.
Needless to say, we left Regensburg full and happy. There is one more German stop tomorrow. Auf Wiedersehen!
All the best,