Bavaria - A region for gourmets

Stockfoto-ID: 242842141 Copyright: Kzenon In the gourmet land of Bavaria, the cuisine is just as diverse as the Free State itself. From a table at a local tavern to one in a gourmet restaurant; from regional specialities to haute cuisine – Bavarian food leaves nothing to be desired.

Happy cows graze on the lush alpine meadows of Bavaria; vines thrive on the steep hillsides of Franconia; local fruit and vegetables grow in the mild climate; whilst the clear rivers and lakes play host to lots of different varieties of fish. The Bavarian landscape isn't just beautiful; it also offers the ideal conditions for numerous regional and high-quality natural products; products that the region's chefs use to create culinary masterpieces.

Bavarian cuisine is famous across the world. White sausage, pretzels with Obatzda cheese, aromatic dishes with Knödel dumplings and numerous kinds of delicious fish and meat dishes – the regional specialities are part of the Bavarian way of life; just like the famous Bavarian gregariousness. People enjoy good food with their family and friends in the local taverns or under the shadows of linden trees in the beer gardens. The food is accompanied by wine from Franconia, which is traditionally served in Bocksbeutel bottles, or beer: There are over 600 breweries in Bavaria alone. The traditional tavern culture is accompanied by gourmet restaurants, with chefs offering guests a more modern interpretation of traditional Bavarian cuisine.

Those who enjoy outstanding food will find a large selection of award-winning restaurants in Bavaria. The list of star chefs in Bavaria is headed by Christian Jürgens with his "Gourmetrestaurant Überfahrt" in Rottach Egern. He was awarded 19 points by Gault Millau and was crowned "Chef of the Year" in 2012. He is the only Bavarian chef who can boast three Michelin stars. There are a further 46 one and two star restaurants in Bavaria.

Wherever it says Bavaria, Bavaria is found within. Thanks to the EU "Protected Designation of Origin" ("PDO") label and "Protected Geographical Indication" ("PGI"), consumers know where foods originate from. Thus, for example, the unpasturised Allgäu Emmental cheese and Allgäu Bergkäse are guaranteed to have been produced in the Allgäu. All of the milk used in the production of these cheeses must also originate from this area. The famous Nuremberg bratwurst is also protected across Europe. Nuremberg bratwurst must be produced in Nuremberg, and Bavarian beer – which is, of course, produced in line with the traditional German Purity Law or Reinheitsgebot – only comes from Bavarian brewing vessels. "Franconian wine" is another protected term – the wine must be produced and decanted in the growing region of Franconia. The most stringent quality standards are also taken into account when it comes to the growing and processing of the grapes.

It is a great pleasure to enjoy Bavarian products directly where they are produced. Milk and cheese products taste best when consumed on the Alps with views over the mountains. Local beers can be sampled in the region's small breweries, whilst the latest year's vintages can be tasted in a convivial atmosphere at wine festivals or in a local winery.

Another great way to sample the local cuisine is to go on a culinary tour of the State. Routes such as the "Franconian Cider Route" through the Hesselberg region, the "Beer and Castle Route" in the Franconian Forest Nature Reserve or the "Bavarian Milk and Cheese Road" all promise treats for the tastebuds typical to Bavaria.