Last year, All Saints Day fell on a Saturday. This year, it was on a Sunday. I think that made a difference in our expectations of having stuff to do. As it was, I stayed in my nightgown for most of the day and did laundry. Bill did schoolwork and walked the dogs, running into the local horse folks. The dogs, of course, freaked out. I bet none of the local horsey people would believe me if I told them that I spent most of my childhood in a barn and used to compete in horse shows. But it's been years... I'm sure I could ride if I wanted to, but I would pay for it. So would the horse, for that matter.
We did decide to go out to dinner, though, and tonight we chose to dine at a restaurant in Nagold that has been piquing our interest for awhile now. The Alte Post Hotel is a centerpiece of Nagold. It's situated right on the main square and is a sight to behold. We live a mere five kilometers or so from Nagold, though you'd never know it from the way the landscape so dramatically changes. Jettingen goes from open fields and flat horizons to deep valleys and hills in Nagold. It's hard to believe they are so close together. Since we live so close, there's no need to try the hotel... however, the restaurant is a different matter altogether.
There is a much fancier sign closer to the entrance, but since it was dark outside, I photographed the one that was lit...
We were welcomed into the intimate dining area to the left of the entrance. It wasn't until we were leaving that I noticed there's a smaller and more intimate dining area to the right, too. It was no matter to us, though, since there was only one other couple there when we arrived. We sat at a table in the corner of the dining room...
Since we both wanted fish, Bill chose a nice local white wine for us... made right here in the Stuttgart area. We also had our usual water with gas.
I entertained myself by speaking very rudimentary German to our excellent waitress. There were actually two of them helping us. One spoke excellent English. The other, I'm not sure, since we managed to converse in German. All these evenings out in nice restaurants have helped me with my language skills somewhat.
I don't always have a starter, but I was intrigued by the spinach soup, which was served with strips of house prepared salmon. Bill had a salad.
As we waited for our first courses, group of three came in with two dogs, one tiny chihuahua and a much larger hound who looked kind of like a cross between a lab and a viszla. I was amazed by how cute they were and how well they behaved. The larger dog curled up on a blanket and went to sleep while her owners enjoyed dinner. Wish mine were that well behaved.
Bill's salad was supposed to be small, but was somewhat substantial. It was very colorful and had a nice, tangy vinaigrette. He liked it, but had to stop before getting too full. The bread was very fresh and delicious.
My spinach soup. This was very delicately flavored... spinach with some cream and salmon strips that didn't taste like they were smoked. I enjoyed the soup, though I think I might have liked some salt with it. There was neither salt nor pepper on the table. Perhaps it's just as well. Salt would have covered up the subtle nuances of this soup's flavors.
Since we had a big meat day yesterday, Bill and I each had fish for dinner. He had the lachsforelle and I had a zander filet. We had the same sides, too, rosemary potatoes and spinach. We each had a choice of two sides and happened to pick the same ones. The potatoes were hearty, flavorful, and delightful and they were not overpowered by the rosemary. The spinach was perfectly done; not mushy or overcooked. I think if I had known yesterday that we'd be eating at Alte Post, I might have picked something other than spinach!
My zander filet is in the foreground. It was very satisfying with its firm white flesh. I tried Bill's lachsforelle and it was also nice, though I preferred the zander. By this point, a couple was seated next to us and I noticed them noticing me taking a photo. That's why I only took one photo. They seemed to think we were kooky Americans.
I also accidentally poured fizzy water into my wine glass just as Bill was about to recharge our glasses. The waitress seemed to take slight mock offense as she shooed him good naturedly back to his seat. I am happy to report that service is very professional at Alte Post. They take it seriously, even if they are getting slightly weeded by a large influx of people. A bunch of ladies showed up and the had obviously made reservations, since there was a big table made up for them, complete with three glasses per place setting. The restaurant had been almost empty when we arrived and by the time we were finishing dinner, was full.
Though I was well satisfied after the main course, we decided to have dessert. Alte Post's restaurant has a number of enticing choices. They have creme brulee, strawberries with cream, and several house made ice creams.
I went with the Schwarzwalder... This was vanilla ice cream with cherry sauce, cherries, and a sprinkling of chocolate powder. A little more chocolate would have made me happy, though this was a really nice ending. It wasn't too big, either.
Bill's dessert was basically vanilla ice cream covered with a shot of hot espresso. It was fantastic.
We noticed the people sitting around us enjoying what looked like fabulous steaks with frites. Again... the prices out here in the country are less than what we'd pay in Stuttgart, yet the food and service is just as good and, in many cases, even superior. Tonight's bill came to 106 euros, which is significantly less than what we spent at [M]eatery yesterday. The service was also more personal and, I think, even more professional. We didn't notice our server taking a break at the bar, for instance.
Anyway, if you've been reading this blog, you already know I'm a fan of Nagold's adorable charm. On Sundays and holidays, you can park for free. And for us, it's less than a ten minute drive. Yes, we'll go back to Stuttgart for dinner, but with the choices we have in Nagold and even Tuebingen, it's hard to imagine why...
Of course I recommend Alte Post. It's a great place for a date night. And for those who have kids, I believe I spotted a kinder menu.
For more on the Alte Post, check out this article... it's in German, but there's always Google Chrome for translations.