Grünenberg (Green Hill) is a tiny hamlet outside Gingen, sitting picturesquely in the hills, consisting of some farm buildings and a traditional restaurant.
When I was a child we used to make long and short weekend walks, and whenever we were near Gasthof Grünenberg around dinner time, my parents had a dark beer with their dinner, and I ordered Spätzle (our Swabian pasta named “Little Sparrows”) with a lot of sauce. I never felt the need to eat the roast which was necessary to get the delicious sauce I needed for my Spätzle.
At the time it was very uncommon to serve dark beer in restaurants. This one did, and so on Saturdays and Sundays hordes of hikers and motorists pilgrimaged to Grünenberg, many only to indulge in the dark beer fresh from the tap. It was Andechser, a very strong beer produced at the monastery of Andechs, at the shores of Ammersee in Bavaria.
The Gasthof is about three kilometres up the hill from Gingen. You can walk there on marked tracks from the town (ask the locals), or if you want to drive: Coming into Gingen on B10 from Göppingen/Stuttgart turn right at the traffic light in the town centre, towards Grünenberg/Unterböhringen. After about 3 km the restaurant is on the left side of the narrow and winding road.
From Grünenberg you can start to some nice walks, as to Burren (to the left) and Fränkel (to the right after the farmhouses) and Wasserberg.
Buchsteiner is Gingen’s biggest enterprise although the production has declined since my childhood. They are famous for their plastic containers, the trademark is a buffalo horn, so the slogan is “Buchsteiner – die Marke mit dem Büffelhorn” (The brand with the buffalo horn). You can find this at the bottom of all containers.
In the early days they produced their egg holders and salad servers really only from buffalo horn imported from all over the world, and then also from calf bones. They were the biggest horn production enterprise in Germany. Johannes Buchsteiner started the business in the neighbour village of Kuchen in 1910 but already two years later he moved to Gingen (so no snapping in this case LOL). Reasons were the great centrally located property and Gingen’s container railway station which was essential for the import of the buffalo horns and the export of the widening product range, like combs, letter openers and shoe horns. The First World War forced the factory to use other materials than buffalo horns which were gradually replaced by plastic.
If you are interested in plastic production you can contact the enterprise and find out visiting times.
Otherwise just check the outlet store, named “Fundgrube”, in Lindenstraße. Apart from their own plastic products – from cups, plates and spoons to salad bowls, or soap dishes to rubbish bins – they also sell imported stuff like toilet bags, plastic flowers etc. I always find something practical whenever I go there. I especially like the “click” containers with lids, and microwave and freezer containers.
You reach the shop and the enterprise by turning into the town centre at the traffic lights on B 10 (direction Hohensteinhalle). Directly after crossing the Fils river turn right (continue towards Hohensteinhalle). This is already Lindenstraße. You find the shop (“Fundgrube”) after 200 metres on the right side, the entrance to the enterprise is another 100 m further.
Shop opening hours Monday to Friday 9am to 12.30pm and 2pm to 5.30pm