In southern Hessen, this café has a fame. Bernd Siefert, the owner, has won several medals in pastry making and also the world championship some years ago. He is very active in marketing his products and the café in Michelstadt, wrote several books and gives seminars about anything related to pastry. On the first sunny weekend in March 2011, spring being in the air, I was dragging my colleague from Melbourne through Odenwald region and so it was quite logical that I wanted to stop here for coffee and cake during our brief stop in Michelstadt. It was quite crowded at the counter but we found a seat in the small café. I could do nothing to prevent my colleague from ordering Schwarzwälder Kirsch (black forest cherry cake), she said she eats that anytime she is in Germany. Cafè Siefert has such a huge variety in cakes that this cherry cake was a waste in my eyes. Well.... her choice. It was indeed very hard for me to decide but finally I ordered the orange-marsipan cake in one of my photos. We both had a latte macchiato to go with. What can I say? Yes, the cake was good, and no, I would not have thought this to be from a world champion pastry chef. I have eaten better cakes. But then, how can I judge from one cake only. Maybe it is more the very special cakes they make: unusual combinations and ingredients. There is for example a “Japanese Black Forest Cherry Cake”, but with azuki red beans instead and green matcha tea.
In addition to cakes they sell a big variety of chocolate and pralines. I loved their orange slices and pieces of lemon peels dipped in dark chocolate. And to my surprise they also sold what they called “quince bread”: quince paste similar to Colombia’s bocadillos, the pieces made from guava paste.
The prices for the cakes are moderate: approx. 2,90 € per piece of cake, same for a latte macchiato. Prices for chocolate are more expensive than average, but that should be expected. Note that inside the café they only accept cash and for anything from the counter they accept credit cards for anything above 20 €. When we were there (March 2011), the credit card machine was broken though. And one must pay separate: for café and for the goods from the counter, which I found strange.
Tue-Sat: 9:00 – 18:00, Sun: 10:00 – 18:00, closed on Mondays.
As far as I could see it is not barrier free to get inside (steps into the shop). It could be that it is wheelchair accessible in summer when they have seating outside available.
From the market square with famous town hall, walk past the town hall to your right. It is on the right side of the street after approx. 100 m.
Café Siefert on Google Maps.
© Ingrid D., March 2011 (So please do not copy my text or photos without my permission.)
When I am in Darmstadt this is a place I like to go and have lunch. It's right at the market square, in the ground floor there is a bakery and upstairs there is a café , where you also have a light lunch. This is not a restaurant with a large menu, more a bistro type of place. They have a lunch menu, which always includes at least one vegetarian dish. Needless to say, that with a bakery downstairs, you can also have great cakes for dessert.
If possible I like to have a table near the window to look down at the market, but these tables are often taken.
The last time I was there I had a great pumpkin soup, my friend had a potato stew, just the right thing to warm us up again on a snowy day. The fact that we decided to have some wine with our lunch also helped.
For dessert we wanted to try the Baumkuchen, a specialty which you don't get very often. They had two different kinds, so we said we'd get both and share them. They pobably had about a thousand calories per bite, but after having had wine for lunch none of us cared, and both cakes were very good!
The small town of Dossenheim, just outside of Heidelberg, has an Italian restaurant which is much better than average. It's in the (very) small shopping mall there, on the first floor - second floor to Americans- and looks like any other Italian place. We had heard good things about it and wanted to try it.
Walking up the stairs we heard a barrage of Italian words, somebody was very angry about something or somebody else. Well, we then knew that this was truly an Italian place.
We were a party of four and got a nice table outside on the terrace above the mall.We all chose different dishes, from lamb through pizza to canneloni - everything was very good.
It took a while until the food was brought, maybe because someone in the kitchen was still very upset, but we didn't mind waiting.
The lamb was the most expensive dish with 19,50 Euro, but as it was very good and tender, the price was justified. It is also something that you don't find too often on menus.
The other dishes were from their daily menu, just under 10 Euro each.
We paid about 70 Euro including the tip and we all thought it was worth it. This is a restaurant we'll return to.
On our way back, we mentioned the staircase to the waiter and he told us to ring the bell the next time. There is an elevator for handicapped people. This is the only complaint I have, there should be a sign downstairs telling you about the bell and the elevator.
Sorry, no pictures, even though I had brought my camera, I forgot to take some.
Dossenheim - Schwabenheimer Hof
Schwabenheimer Hof is a part of Dossenheim, a little village outside the town at the river Neckar. A few farms, a few houses, lots of fields, a lock and a very good restaurant, Zum Anker - To the Anchor, that's all.
Built in 1738, this restaurant used to be the place where men and horses hauling boats could rest, the horses enjoying some hay and water, the men beer, wine and food.
The stables to change the horses were next to the Anker, and even today, long after horses towing boats on the river, you can see and hear many horses in Schwabenheimer Hof.The restaurant is owned by the same family in the 8th generation now.
We were there on a nice morning shortly after they opened at 11 am and sat down in the large beergarden. An hour later the place was packed! We had planned to eat breakfast, but no breakfast was offered on the menu, so we decided to have an early lunch instead.Large bread dumplings with mushrooms were the special of the day, so good!
Parking at the Anker itself is very hard, just 4 or 5 spaces. Most people ride their bikes there, as it's on the bike path along the river Neckar. If you come by car you'll see a large sign at the beginning of the village, telling you to park on a field there. Then it's a very short walk down the lane to the Anker.
This is an Asian restaurant in Viernheim,Bergstrasse. They offer all sorts of Asian meals, but their specialty is the Mongolian buffet. I don't know if it's really Mongolian, probably more a sort of mix from many Asian cuisines. (They also have French Fries, not very Asian, but an all time popular for kids.)
There are several kinds of vegetables, fish, meat and sea food, all uncooked. You put it on your plate,attach a clothes-pin to it and give it to the cook. He will cook it and it is brought to your table.
The clothes-pin carries the number of the table, so that the waiter knows, which plate belongs to whom.
The restaurant is very popular with both Germans and Americans and it's a good idea to reserve a table, especially in the evening or for Sunday lunch.
It's also a nice place for kids, there is an open pond right in the middle of the restaurant, where the children can watch fish and turtles.
Favorite Dish: My favourite is the buffet and I'm not alone here. Most people just say "Buffet, please" and then they start filling their plates.
Prices are 13,90 Euro for Sunday lunch and in the evenings and 7,90 Euro for lunch on a weekday.
The menu is both German and English.
In the Fuerstenlager in Bensheim Auerbach there are two restaurants, one pretty expensive, the other a small, comfortable place. This used to be the guard station for the duke and his family. No full meals are served there,only some snacks and a good selection of freshly baked cakes , also soft drinks, coffee, beer and two of the regional wines. Everything is really inexpensive.
You can sit outside and look down on the park, it was very pleasant. This made a very nice stop after walking.