Ja, wir habben in einem palast gegessen. (To be honest about this I had help from Google translate. The articles are a bitch…die, das, der, eine, einen, einem…ach.) Himmelfahrt means Ascension, the day Christ ascended into heaven. It is a holiday in the EU. Ascension seems like a prettier word. I mean, Jesus, Himmelfahrt? It sounds like he drank a quart of sauerkraut juice and propelled himself to Heaven.
The mother of Kaiser Wilhelm lived for the last years of her life in what is now the Schlosshotel and was Schloss Friedrichshof. Kaiser Wilhelm was the asshole who started World War I. He was also the grandson of Queen Victoria. His mother, also called Victoria, during her brief reign, attempted to reduce the power of the crown and make Germany a constitutional monarchy. If she had succeeded the world would have been a better place. Instead, I was able to have kohlrabi soup in her drawing room. So there’s, you know, a trade off.
The place and grounds were really beautiful. We entered unannounced and without reservations to an extraordinarily elegant but nearly empty dining room and were promptly seated by a liveried footman and then further fussed over by 3 attendants, 6 waiters, an upper house parlour maid, 2 aides-de-camp and a water boy (I didn’t have socks on and was feeling a little under dressed).
It’s asparagus season. The Germans LOVE aparagus, in particular huge thick white asparagus (more on this later). I look at those big white logs and think woody! Nonetheless, that’s what I ordered. What the hell, it’s Germany, it’s Himmelfahrt. The Spargelteller Klassische. The classic aspargus plate which is just aspargus with a side of potatoes or crêpes. First though, I had the kohlrabi soup. Kohrabi is not really something I like so much but, again, Germany, Himmelfahrt, Schlosshotel, Queen Victoria, what the hell.
It was sublime. Spoon dropping delicious. The Royal Indian Mounted Police started with an elaborate spargel gelèe arrangement which was good but it was no kohlrabi soup. OK, to be fair, there was a quail breast in it too. But still.
Then came the Spargelteller Klassiche. A plate of penis-shaped vegetables with butter and crêpes, so there was that.
Across from us Archduke Flügelhorn von Schnussenhöllen was eating lunch with his dog who was under the table. The dog got his own custard and his emminence had an entire bottle of wine for lunch. He is my hero.
The bill was nearly $200. I nearly himmelfahrted.