Sunday, February 11, 2018

Mauerwerk in Herrenberg, take two!

I must confess that the dreary weather we've been experiencing lately in Germany has not made me want to venture out and try new restaurants.  However, this morning, I realized that I had spent entirely too many days in my nightgown, just waiting for the sun to shine.  So I decided to adopt the German way of thinking, which is there is no such thing as bad weather... only bad clothing.  Although I usually try to experience new restaurants on the weekends, today we decided to pay another visit to Mauerwerk in Herrenberg, a place we visited for the first and only time in October 2015.

I see by my first review that we enjoyed our first visit to this restaurant on Herrenberg's main drag.  When we lived here the first time, from 2007-09, the building Mauerwerk is currently in was a protestant church.  It's now a place where one can enjoy a good meal or a good show.  Mauerwerk regularly offers movies, concerts, and theater productions.  Why we haven't availed ourselves of this place more often I don't really know.


The front door...  


And a different perspective of Herrenberg...

In any case, we made a reservation for 1:00pm, but we didn't have to do that.  When we arrived a little before our reservation time, we found the restaurant had only a few tables full.  There was a birthday party for kids going on in the upper level and a couple of family gatherings on the main level.  Bill and I were offered a four top next to the bar, which offered a different perspective than where were seated during our visit in 2015.  The menu, however, had changed little.  On our first visit, I had salmon, which I saw offered again today.  Bill had a burger on that visit and I saw a similar version of what he on that visit had offered today.


Obligatory shot of Bill looking at the menu...  besides the offerings on the menu, there was a special burger being offered called the Maui burger.  Neither of us went for it.


Very nice bar area, complete with 15 year old El Dorado rum... one of my favorites.


And a view of the artwork... I liked the pipe organ themed sculpture.  I love pipe organs.

Last time we visited Mauerwerk, we had three courses, which was too much food.  This time, we were more sensible.  I went with the Mauerwerk Burger, which kind of crushed Bill, since he wanted it, too.  He decided to have a vegetarian dish instead, a curry made with coconut milk, mango, red and yellow peppers, onions, snowpeas, coriander, and cumin.  I raised my eyebrows when he decided not to have it with turkey strips, which made our waiter laugh.


This was the Mauerwerk Burger.  It was 180 grams of fresh ground beef, cheddar cheese, bacon, homemade chili ketchup, lime pepper mayonnaise, arugula, onions, and homemade pickles.  It came with a side of herbed fried potatoes and ketchup.  I'm pretty sure the bun was homemade.  It was delicious.

Seriously, I was impressed by the Mauerwerk Burger.  The beef was very fresh and juicy and tasted really good, which I've found isn't always a given when it comes to German beef.  I liked that the cheese wasn't too strong, as it was when Bill had a burger there the first time we visited.  I only wish they offered an option that allowed patrons to choose their own toppings.  I prefer my burgers a little less fancy.  As it was, this sandwich was almost too big to eat with my hands.


Bill's vegetarian curry.


I asked for my burger to be done medium, which it was.  I managed half before I had the rest packed up.  I wanted dessert.

We paired our lunches with wine.  I had a Spanish Rioja and Bill enjoyed a delicious Syrah from South Africa.  We also had our usual fizzy water.  I was a little tempted by Mauerwerk's Wall Dwarf, which is a beer that is brewed exclusively for them.  I'm glad I went with wine, though.  After I finished the first one, I had another Rioja that was offered as a daily special.

One thing I noticed while we were dining is that the dining area is a bit noisy.  The kids on the second floor were pretty loud, as kids tend to be.  I said to Bill, "It's too bad they don't turn on some music.  I see they have speakers."  Just as the kids were about to leave, the bartender answered my prayers and turned on some great classic rock.  Suddenly, the atmosphere was way better... Queen, Foreigner, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Pink Floyd, Bonnie Tyler, and Leonard Cohen...  yeah.  Much better than the sound of little urchins chattering.  Much as I love urchins, that is...

Speaking of little kids, at the table next to us was a young couple and their little baby, along with a couple of friends.  I was enjoying watching them.  The father, in particular, was very attentive to the baby and, I can only assume, his wife.  He helped his wife when she left the dining room to breastfeed.  He held the baby when she got fussy and, when Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart" came on, danced with her around the room.  It was very heartwarming... especially since I have my doubts that guy was even born when "Total Eclipse of the Heart" was popular.  I was a little kid myself in those days.

Anyway, the music made me want dessert and more wine.  The wait staff seemed to enjoy my attempts at German, too, although at least one of the staff members spoke native like English.


I had the "Toblerone" mousse... two clumps of semi sweet chocolate mousse, kumquats, pomegranate seeds, red currants and blueberries, and a little chocolate cookie...


Bill went with the mango pancakes, which I'm sure he thought would be smaller.  The pancakes were not very sweet, but had a little dusting of powdered sugar.  They arrived warm with a side of vanilla ice cream and more berry compote.  It was way more than he could eat; we should have shared it.  However, it was delicious.  

Our total bill was just over 60 euros.  We paid in cash, though they do take cards.  Our servers were very appreciative when Bill gave them a generous "Trinkgeld" (tip).

I'd been wanting to go back to Mauerwerk since our first visit in 2015. It's a shame it's taken so long to visit again. I really enjoyed today's lunch, if not because of the good food and cheerful service, because of the pleasant atmosphere. In fact, as I was sitting there enjoying lunch over my beloved classic rock, I felt the need to post on Facebook... "I love (heart emoji) Germany soooo much!" And I do, even if the winters do make me want to hibernate.

Mauerwerk is a real gem in Herrenberg. Not only is the food good, but it's also a much appreciated source of entertainment. It's time we took in a show there. I'll have to keep my eyes peeled, since we live so close.  Mauerwerk is open daily for dinner from 5:00pm and from 9:30am until midnight on Sundays.  They do a breakfast on Sundays until 3:00pm.

If we don't do anything special for dinner on Valentine's Day, I suspect my next post will be about our next road trip, which will be to the Czech Republic... another place we are long overdue to visit! Stay tuned!

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