Ok, so I will admit that Strasbourg and I didn’t exactly start off on the right foot. I had woken up with a stinking cold, and my mood was not helped by someone having left my coat in Munich, and it being a shade too froid for my liking without it. But we were in Strasbourg, and we were going to explore it.
I was perhaps a little grumpy too thanks to the constant sneezing (which could of course mean that I was a little more sensitive than usual) but the amount of rude people I came across on that particular morning did not for a happy Emma make. I will hasten to add that not all of these people were Strasbourgian (not that I am sure that’s a word) and many were in fact tourists… I personally believe that you will not be well received anywhere by being obnoxious (whether you happen to be spending lots of cash or not), and having witnessed a few people actually go out of their way to do the exact opposite of basic manners, my mood might have been clouded a little further.
None of the above was poor old Strasbourg’s fault obviously, but something had to change significantly for me not to completely write the day (and perhaps) Strasbourg off. But never fear Dear Reader, it did. The lovely Mr R has known me for a very very long time, and he is a quite often a wise soul to say the least (apart from forgetting my coat!!), and at that point he suggested that we start our relationship with this particular city all over again – after lunch. And lunch we did, at L’Ancienne Douane. Make sure you turn up early if you haven’t booked – we arrived at 12.00 on the dot, and very shortly after this place was packed, with a queue snaking out the door…
The Alsace is famous for its regional cheeses, quiches, amazing puddings, beautiful wines, and one of my particular favourites, the simple but delicious Tarte Flambee, otherwise known as flammekuchen… If you haven’t come across it before, it’s not dissimilar to Pizza, but with the thinnest crust possible and without the tomato or mozzarella. Instead it’s topped with creme fraiche, onions and plenty of bacon. And this, together with the warm welcome from our motherly waitress, was like a big hug to make up for my bad morning.
And to completely make amends, the puddings were pretty good too. I had chosen another regional speciality, the kugelhof – whose little domed baking tins can be found all over the city.
I am not sure if my temporary “Mum” felt the following obligatory for remedial purposes (or Mr R had perhaps instructed her to do so), but the amount of rum she had doused this particularly fine dessert in was quite extreme. Let’s just say that for the rest of the afternoon, everything took on a particularly rosy glow, including Strasbourg. Rather shamefully we didn’t go near the rather impressive cathedral on this occasion, but spent the afternoon instead wandering the winding streets of Petit France, admiring the ancient scenery and the storks. And the sun even came out!
And, as if to say “come on, it wasn’t that bad – you quite enjoyed Strasbourg in the end” – this smiley face bade us farewell as we departed. It not only made me laugh, I might just have agreed…
book hotels in london says
Ahh, Strasbourg is the city I left feeling so unfinished! There is so much to explore – this is on the top of my list to return to! Amazing photography!!!
Thank you! :)
Well, I’m glad the visit eventually redeemed itself – it would have been a shame to have wasted the trip when everything was looking so charming! (I was just thinking that the rum probably also compensated a bit for the left-behind coat as well – that ‘rosy glow’ you mentioned! )
It definitely had something to do with it! Thank you Caroline :)
Love the smiley face! And am noting down the word ‘kugelhof’ as that looks like something it would be rude not to try at some point. Glad Strasbourg redeemed itself in the end – it does look a very pretty place.
Thank you. Yes, if you come across a Kugelhof, make sure you eat it! :D
I think it must be the law to start off on a day out to Strasbourg with something going wrong. We hit another car on our way in on the last visit :-( It’s only a two hour trip for us and well worth making for the yummy flammekuchen.
I am beginning to think Strasbourg is a little unlucky!! Can’t believe it’s only two hours from you, we could all have gone for flammekuchen together! :)
a bad day turned good. I like that sort of ending. I also like that sort of pudding!
Me too… On all fronts! :D
Glad it turned out okay. Love the smiley face!
We’ve been to Strasbourg twice. On our trip there last year, we had a waiter in a restaurant across from the cathedral who was extremely rude to my husband, so much so that much husband reported him to the apologetic manager. Apparently the waiter’s ire had been provoked by my husband’s not being fluent in French; he refused to respond when my husband asked him about the use of “credit cards” even though he clearly knew those words in English (I was trying to smooth things over, as I know a lot of French). I understood his taking pride in his language, but there was no reason for rudeness. Thankfully, this negative experience didn’t spoil our brief trip; there were lovely things to see, good things to eat, and waitstaff who were much more pleasant at a sushi restaurant the next night!
Oh my goodness, that sounds horrendous! I see very little point in behaving like that when you live in a huge tourist attraction of a city! Glad you didn’t let it spoil your trip (and that you complained!!)… :)
Trish - Mum's Gone to says
Looks a very pretty place. I’m glad it redeemed itself.
Love that last photo!
That last photo was worth going alone for! Thank you Trish! :D
What a beautiful city, by the looks of your pictures. Must put on to-see list. I’ve only ever heard about Strasbourg as a stubborn old city since they have enough weight to make the entire EU parliament move there every month (I think), costing taxpayers loads of money, not to mention the loss of work hours for our politicians, plus the carbon emissions. But besides that it looks really swell! :-D
Thanks Jennie! I know, I think it has a lot to answer for! :D PS. Hope party went well the other evening, sorry not to see you!
What a great story so happy to hear it all turned out well in the end. Your pics are amazing as always especially the pudding picture – almost good enough to eat! xx
Thanks Mum… It was good enough to eat, honestly! :) xxx
Midlife Singlemum says
Strasbourg is on my dream trip around Europe for some unspecified time in the future.
Make sure you go for the tarte flambee AND the kugelhof and don’t forget your coat! :)