Visit date: September 12, 2017, overnight
On the second day of this trip, we stayed in Stein am Rhein, a very beautiful town in Switzerland located on the upper Rhine River. 1 day was in L’Engle, France.
We started our first half of the trip, « Tour of the Most Beautiful Villages in Switzerland, » and after visiting three places on the first day, we arrived at this city. It seemed to be quite a popular town, and it was very difficult to get a hotel on the day. Is it simply because it was arranged on the day? There was only a little expensive place left. Moreover, it was a little bit far from the old town (but it was a distance that I could go for a few minutes on foot).
However, the local hotel didn’t seem to work well with us, and we had to wait in the lobby for about 20 minutes after we arrived at the hotel to have the room prepared. As a result, I was able to stay in a slightly upgraded room under the same conditions as when I made the reservation without any problems. There were more tourists than I expected, even though it was in the European countryside. But maybe it’s because it’s Switzerland. As an apology, I was told to wait in the lobby until the room was ready and to order a beer.
Well, it’s a German speaking country, so the beer is delicious. (Beer photo) Now, as I’ve written in this blog several times, I love the atmosphere of the upper Rhine. It’s quiet, peaceful and beautiful. Just before I came here, I visited the most beautiful village in Switzerland called « Eglisseau », which is very close to Büsingen, which I visited two years ago on an enclave tour.
Stein am Rhein is located on the north side of the Rhine River. The Rhine is the border line between Switzerland and Germany, and the north side of the river is German territory and the south side is Swiss territory. Büsingen, which I visited before, is one of such irregularities. Although it is on the north side of the Rhine, it is basically Swiss territory, and only a part of it remains German territory, which is why it became an enclave. The reason for this is that it depended on whether the lord was Catholic or Protestant. Culturally, though, they are exactly the same.
Incidentally, this is where the border with Germany is intricate. Basically, the north side of the Rhine is German territory and the south side is Swiss territory. However, this Stein am Rhein and the neighboring town of Schaffhausen (a large city next door) are Swiss territory, even though they are located north of the Rhine. However, at the end of the Second World War in 1945, it was mistaken for German territory and was bombed by the Americans. The Americans probably thought that north of the Rhine was Germany. In any case, attacking a permanent neutral country is too bad, America.
The actual town (which I walked around the next morning) is just as I imagined German-speaking Switzerland to be. However, because of its small size, I had a better and more beautiful impression of calmness.
We chose this restaurant for dinner, although we didn’t make a special reservation because TripAdvisor information had a highly rated restaurant in the central square.
I chose a veal dish. I think veal dishes are often eaten in Austria. Schnitzel is a typical example. This area is also close to Austria, so it seems to be a popular food. It was very delicious.
The starter soup and the bread, which was rye bread, were very good.
The wine is probably a local Pinot Noir. One thing I found interesting about Switzerland is that you can ask for it by the deciliter (dl). Deciliter! I haven’t used that since elementary school; I imagine 1 dl is a full glass.
It was more powerful than I thought it would be. And it was delicious. When I looked at the receipt, it said « 3x 1 PINOT NOIR AUSLESS ». « AUSLESS » means that the wine was made from grapes harvested late in the season. The white wine, Riesling, has a sweet taste like a so-called dessert wine, but the red wine has a tannic finish with a slightly aged feeling. The one I got this time didn’t have the sweetness of a dessert wine at all. So we found out why it was more powerful than we thought.
By the way, what surprised me was that there were no people at all in the central square of the old town. Even though it rained suddenly at night, it was almost zero. I heard that the tourists who I saw so much were having a meal at a hotel restaurant. I wondered if the hotels near the Old Town Square were free, but I couldn’t find them on Booking.com.
That’s why the restaurant was empty, or rather I was alone.
But really, this restaurant was delicious. Here it is. (The picture in front of the restaurant was taken the next morning.
レストランはこちら：Restaurant Ilge from TripAdvisor
If you ever visit this city, go there.