Friday, August 13, 2010

Gluten Free in Germany

Gluten Free in Germany -- hey, that rhymes!

I can't state strongly enough how much I needed the German translation of the dining card from I used it at virtually every meal, and I would have been lost without it. Many of the people in the smaller cities and towns that we traveled through did not have much of a command of English, including wait staff in restaurants. I tried to mostly eat in more sophisticated restaurants where the kitchen staff would have better knowledge of the diet, but in truth pretty much everywhere we went the people serving in the restaurants went to some effort to help me. I thought for sure that a small restaurant in Bad Sooden Allendorf would throw up their hands and tell me that they could not help me, but the waitress and the owner(?) of the restaurant went over the note, heads together and conferring for a few minutes before the waitress came back and said that they could get me a salad, some potatoes, and an unbreaded schnitzel. Ach du lieber! Lunch!

Most of the trip I chose salads for lunch. The salads in Germany are nearly always very fresh and can be ordered with a meat served on it. They were very accommodating about no breading, etc. I don't really understand about the dressings though. I always asked for the salads without dressing, at least for Steve, who doesn't eat dressing, and for me, because I don't always know what is in it. Without dressing seems to mean "only vinegar". sometimes I would say "ohne vinegar"; maybe that threw them. It means without, I believe. Maybe they heard "only vinegar." But even if I didn't say that, some mild vinegar dressing seemed inevitable.

Dinners were easier most of the time. We ate in some very nice restaurants. One was in Darmstadt on a street less traveled. It was an Italian restaurant that I think was named Panino. The name scared me a bit, but we looked at the menu and I'm glad that we stayed. I had some very nice Prosecco, a tomato soup, and some lamb and potatoes in tomato sauce. It was maybe a bit of tomato overload, but it was quite good.


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