French Bistro, Brewery Hotel in Luxembourg

Trip Start Jun 17, 2010
Trip End Jun 28, 2010

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Where I stayed
Brasserie Meyer

Flag of Luxembourg  , Luxembourg,
Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Regretfully today we must leave our Alpine piece of heaven at Gaestehaus Lauby and its green hills and cool air to our next destination, Bascharage Luxembourg ( ). We enjoy a slow morning of packing and eating breakfast, each seeming not to want to leave.

We head to Freiburg to ensure good bridge crossing back into France and then let Gertie/GPS do her magic.  We defy her for a bit and drive straight up the coast of France for some 50km enjoying the back road drive along the Rhein River.  It is broad here and diked. Before we came I had heard of major flooding in southern France, but have seen no evidence of it in our journeys.

We continue through another farm belt in the eastern side of the Alsace region of France.  Tons of grapes, vegetables and fruits of all kinds are evident everywhere.  Funny thing is the one thing I have eaten the most of, asparagus –spargel(g)- asperages(f) I have yet to see in a field.  Farmers are cutting their hay and fluffing it for drying. Strawberries are coming into season and u-pick signs are abundant.

Europe is much more environment conscious than the US.  Everything is recycled that can be –even in hotels it is encouraged.  The toilets all have either 2 buttons –one for pee, two for poop=big flush, or even one that you start and stop yourself.  We are not there yet but the hotel we stay in Luxembourg has the coolest thing yet.  When you get into your room, you must put your room key into a slot in order to have electricity in the room.  Forcing the electricity to go off when you are not there. Pretty cool huh? Solar panels on roofs and windmills are everywhere.

Since we are in France and again passing through one charming colorful village after another, I decide to try one last time for the French bistro experience.  It is nearing 12:30 so it is time to make a move.  I have Gertie look up French Restaurants and she come up with La Bahnstub in Gunderhoffen France ( ). We luck out they let us in.  We asked for the terrace and the waiter walked us out there only to be told by another that the terrace was full –we saw at least 5 empty tables.  I am thinking maybe it is because we are in jeans.  The restaurant is actually divided into 2 sections and this section is very formal and elegant.  They walk us across the way to the commoner side and seat us in a more casual setting.  We actually liked it better.  The decor is soothing pastel colors, the proverbial yellow/blue/green French tablecloths, a basket of fresh French bread waiting on the table suited us just fine.  We order the prix fixe menu for a 3 course lunch.  The first course is hors d'oeuvres  you serve yourself from a buffet.  There were all kinds of things to choose from including several sliced meats –like sausages, all kinds of salads like parsnips, or peas and carrots, or marinated zucchini.  It was all very tasty.

The second course was a choice of veal or beef. Marshall ordered the beef which was served medium with peppercorn sauce and pommes frites (fries).  I ordered the veal which was fork tender in a veal reduction sauce and spaetzle.  Both came with zucchini and mushrooms on the side.

Dessert –like we had any room left – was a sample of three different mini offerings.  There was a glass with grapefruit juice with grapefruit sorbet, a bread pudding with raspberry coulee, and the cutest little two bite crème brulee.

Along with a glass of Bordeaux wine our lunch came to £50 but it was worth every penny for both the food and the experience.  As we were eating, a large group of 9 came in. It was interesting to hear them talking in French, then German, then English. Marshall is actually beginning to pick up on a few of the words.   We leave sated and in need of a nap but must drive on.

We continue on back roads through the beautiful scenery on into Germany where we pick up the Autobahn. Marshall has come to like the speed thing about the autobahn.  Today there were only two times I felt is necessary to pull the seat cushion out of my ass due to sudden braking when someone would pull out into the fast lane at a slow rate of speed.  Thankfully no mishaps.

We arrive at our hotel around 4pm.  Luxembourg is much different. Gone are the window boxes and gardens.  In fact, these row homes all seem to have concrete or gravel yards with just a few planters as dividers.  I guess when you are a very small country you must give up some things or maybe it is there way of being green which is sad if you have few living things.

We check into our hotel.  The room is spacious but spartan, just the basics but it was inexpensive, includes breakfast, and just happens to be a brewery and meat smokehouse. We are at Brasserie Meyer in Bascharage, Luxembourg ( ).  It has a large restaurant bar, another restaurant area for breakfast service, the brewery, the smokehouse, and a shop to purchase hams, salamis, etc.  I wish we could bring the meats back to the states as gifts but don’t think that will fly through customs.  We pull up to the bar for our free beer (as welcome to hotel) and each order an amber beer.  It was very good but I would classify it as a honey beer.  It was deliciously malty with big creamy head but surprisingly smooth and low carbonation more like a firkin beer. Yummy. 

We have Internet again; funny how much you miss it when you don’t have it. We head to the room to search for restaurants and upload yesterday’s blog.  There are hardly any restaurants in this town, maybe 4 and it is a good size town.  It blows our mind.  There also aren’t any laundry mats so we must carry our smoke infested bar clothes again. In hindsight, I should have washed them out in our apartment and hung them on the terrace to dry.  Oh well.  The next town, Petange,  is right next door and seems to have more to choose from so we hop in the car and head over there.  We find an area that has many things along the strip and park and walk for awhile to stretch our legs. We are walking slowly. Somewhere along the way Marshall has injured his ankle and it is tender.  We think it is more a bruise than anything but has limited the walking (I don’t think he is faking just to get out of walking).  We find a little park that has bier garden seating.  We sit down and sure enough a waitress comes out of the pub across the street and serves us.  We settle on a Leffe Bruin for Marshall and an Orval –e- for me.  They are very good. It is relaxing. The weather is just right for short sleeves.  We are in a tree shaded little area with birds chirping away.  We spend time just relaxing and enjoy it for a while. We realize once again we will have managed to have 3 meals in three different countries; breakfast in Germany, lunch in France, and dinner in Luxembourg.  The jet set trend continues.

We decide on Chinese tonight.  I am in serious need of some more vegetables.  I don’t know why there aren’t more obese people in Europe with all the starches, breads, and meats they consume. We try a Japanese restaurant whose sign says they should be open and there is a woman inside but they are closed. We land at L’arrivee du Printemps (which translates to The Arrival of Spring) a Chinese restaurant in Petange, Luxembourg. How that name ties to Chinese I have no idea.  We each order a soup, Marshall egg drop and me a mushroom soup in broth.  It was delicious and light.  Then some typical pork/vegetables and chicken/vegetables along with the local Bofferding Pils beer and we were set for the evening.  We head back to our room and crash in very, very comfortable beds. Tomorrow has no plan other than a visit to Achouffe Brewery in Belgium next door. We note once again how light it is at 10 o'clock at night. I snap a picture to see if I can capture it. Days are long here. Sun comes up around 5ish and doesnt get dark until after 10pm. Au revoir!
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