10 things we liked about Baden-Baden
1. French wine is good! – In Canada we drink a lot of red wines, mostly from BC or Australia and have never really liked white wines. The whites we found were generally very sweet or very dry, not somewhere in the middle. We ended up drinking a lot of French white wine and enjoyed it very much. Defiantly going to be looking for more whites while in Europe, it’s nice to drink in the hot summer months.
2. Black Forest Cake from the Black Forest. – What is the shit we get in Canada, imported from China? It’s not even in the same league. If you are a baker and read this – and make Black Forest Cake in Canada – you should be ashamed of yourself. FOR SHAME. Not even close. Use real cherries. Real whip cream. And cocoa for the cake, not chocolate. Add in a bit of cherry schnapps and there you have it. Seriously, the stuff we get in Canada is crap. CRAP! This also applies to Black Forest Ham.. it is supposed to be SMOKED not baked. Stupid bakers and deli. Bite you in the face!
3. Aperitif & Desertif – I have never experienced this before, something before dinner to settle your stomach, perhaps a schnapps, champagne or grappa. Then wine or beer with dinner. Then something after to help with the digestion. Why do we not do this at home? You better believe I’m going to have the full setup when we get back.
4. Family spoils you.- Deidra’s family in Baden-Baden, Artur and Barbara, really went all out and spoiled us. They were fantastic hosts even taking us to France for dinner one night. It was nice to have a real bed to sleep in, shower that was clean and relaxing porch to sit and read a book. Thank you for taking us to the Dr to have Dee’s foot looked at and everything else. It was just the right amount of down time that we needed.
5. Yes or No – I (Scott) have now found a new phrase for use with my wife. The relatives are German and speak fantastic English, but sometimes things get lost in translation. So when Artur asked Dee if she would like something, and Dee’s answer was “maybe” or “I’m not sure”, Artur would ask “yes or no?”. The clarity that resulted was fantastic. No mis-understandings, presumptions or reading between the lines. Simple. This is perhaps the most important 3 words I’ve learned in my life! Every man should learn and repeat for a happier life.
6. Weissworst – The beautiful white sausage is a Bavarian specialty, and we hope to eat lots of it when we go to Oktoberfest. Cut the skin off and enjoy, it’s full of flavor.
7. Breakfast – In Canada breakfast is usually a bowl of cereal and your off. In Germany we enjoyed breads, cheese, meat, coffee, hard boiled egg, yogurt, fruit and jams. A new way for us to eat breakfast when we’re back in Canada, much more nutritious and filling.
8. Looking forward to retirement – When we can slow down and enjoy life, the aperitif’s, walks, shows and such. Hopefully finding a place in BC as nice as Baden-Baden (maybe with a hot spring nearby?)
9. Baden-Baden Casino. – This Casino was built in the mid 1800’s and is one of the oldest in Europe. The classy old décor and quality tables puts the casino’s in Vegas to shame. Almost like they were made in China and imported. There were fewer tables in side with lots of seating and room to enjoy the atmosphere, not so much concerned with the dollar amount per square foot of space versus the overall prestige of the house. It seemed you went there to enjoy the company of others rather than just to gamble. Plus the dress code was a jacket and tie for gents, evening attire for the ladies.
10. Baden-Baden baths – These baths have been in use for over 2000 years, first by the Romans and later by Europe’s famous. The baths themselves are made out of marble and have several pools and span over several buildings. There is a nude and clothing side, but when we went there it was gender specific nude so we donned our swimsuits. Very nice and well done, though I think the hot springs in Radium and Ainsworth in British Columbia are still my favorite.