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Freiburg Restaurants, Pubs, and Cafés

From: Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany

Freiburg restaurant photo

ABOVE: A convivial crowd at the Hotel Restaurant Löwen.

Restaurants and taverns

Freiburg is a good restaurant town, with a local gastronomy based on seasonal specialties and fresh products from the Black Forest region. In the "Eating Alemannic" chapter of the Freiburg Official Guide, Reinhard Lessner writes:

"The cuisine of Baden [where Freiburg is located] has retained the elegance and sophistication it gained through centuries of contact with the lands to the west and south.

"Gourmet guides such as Michelin or Varta spread the word about the excellent cuisine of this area throughout the world. A close study of any of them will show a great concentration of good food rating symbols around Freiburg."

Freiburg is also the center of a wine region, as evidenced by the city's two annual wine festivals and the Haus der Badischen Wein in the Alte Wache.

Historic Kaufhaus and Oberkirchs WeinstubenFor traditional cuisine, try to reserve a table at the popular Oberkirchs Weinstuben (the dining room of the Hotel Oberkirch), a cozy and historic wood-beamed restaurant next to the historic Kaufhaus on the Münsterplatz.

HeiliggeiststuebleA cheaper alternative on the Münsterplatz is the Heiliggeiststüble, a friendly restaurant-café that's run by a Catholic organization and offers good food at reasonable prices.

Not far away, in Oberlinden, Zum Roten Bären is a reliable upscale choice; if you prefer scenery with your meal, try Scholssbergrestaurant Dattler, which has been entertaining guests on the Schlossberg (at the top of the cablecar from the Stadtgarten) for more than 125 years.

Lower on the price scale, we can recommend the Gasthaus zum Kranz and the Hotel-Restaurant Löwen in the Altstadt, where you can enjoy traditional German food without a debit-card overdraft. If you're looking for a place to eat after a concert to opera performance, head for the Grosser Meyerhof, where a limited menu is served until midnight. (The Linseneintopf mit Wurst, a tureen of lentil soup with sausage slices, is a bargain that's hard to beat.)

photo copyright FWTMIn nice weather, head for the beer gardens around Insel, where you can eat, drink, or combine the two activities in an outdoor setting.

Do you read Deutsch? The Gastro Guide Freiburg is a handy pocket-size book with German-language reviews of restaurants in the city and the surrounding region. The book was published by a local medical foundation that treats liver and bowel diseases, and it has the subtitle "gastronomy for gastroenterologists."

Of course, you don't have to eat the local cuisine when you're out and about in Freiburg; you'll also find French restaurants, Italian dining rooms and pizza parlors, Thai eateries, Turkish take-outs, vegetarian cafés and the inevitable McDonald's. For more restaurant listings, pick up the Freiburg Official Guide at the tourist office.

Street food

Paul's Imbiss - MuensterplatzFor the best gastronomic bargain in Freiburg, walk to the Münsterplatz and buy a Bratwurst with grilled onions at one of the food vendors' wagons near the cathedral. For dessert, buy a crepe or waffle, or--better yet--purchase fresh fruit from a stall in the Münstermarkt. If you're too late for the market, get a slab of coffeecake or a pretzel at the oudoor bakery window on Schusterstrasse, behind one of the major department stores.

Bakery in HauptbahnhofThe railroad station or Hauptbahnhof is another good place for cheap food, including sandwiches and baked goods. And, of course, you'll find a plethora of grazing options during Freiburg's many festivals, including the annual Christmas Market.

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