Sep 21, 2012

Summer vacation: Zwei bier, bitte

Hoisting a stein in the Far East

We've got sauerkraut
The Ratskeller

With all that German-ness around, it made sense to check out some German cuisine. The Ratskeller is on the luscious grounds of the former German governor’s residence, and it has an absolutely beautiful outdoor patio. The night was pleasantly warm, and the cicadas droned their lovely bagpipe tune all through dinner.

As is our habit, we shared many dishes between us so as to taste the most of the menu. The food was slightly on the bland side, though there was a squash soup that was pretty good. But my schnitzel was flavorless and the sauerkraut lacked bite. It’s possible that the cooks didn’t really understand the flavors; Peter’s salad had both shaved Parmesan and nori. But it was nice to have something different, and now I’m further inspired to try to make my own sauerkraut at home. (So many projects!)

A gentleman of leisure
A gentleman of leisure enjoys his martini.

The martinis were also weak and bland. But the beer (Tsingdao, of course) was served in tall, frosty steins, and it was just delicious. The drinking culture in China is completely different from the United States (it’s basically: do shots until your wife has to carry you home), and all summer I was dying for a place to sit outside and just sip a good brew. So if nothing else, the Ratskeller did that well.

You may be asking, “Isn’t this a beach town?” Well, hold your horses, we’re getting there …