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A guest post by food blogger Richard Kägi

 

Even the journey awakens holiday feelings - I drove from Zurich by the Rhine across the German border - at least then on German soil. The drive up to the southern Black Forest plateau, on winding roads through forests, past waterfalls and inviting inns, it is pure relaxation. From Zurich, I reach the Hotel Spielweg in Münstertal after a good two-hour leisurely drive.

The house - family-owned since 1861, now prudently managed by the 6th generation of sisters Kristin and Viktoria Fuchs - turns out to be a village within a village. In addition to the main building, which comprises the four restaurants, the sun terrace, a cheese dairy and part of the 44 rooms, five other buildings built in the traditional style belong to the hotel complex. They house further rooms, as well as the large wellness area, which is surrounded by a large park, bordered by a lively bubbling brook. Saunas (there is also a barrel sauna in the middle of the garden) cool off in the stream; the water was ice-cold when I visited. A tennis court is available for sports enthusiasts, as a balance to the numerous hikes in the valley and on the surrounding hills, all of which can also be done with children.

Schwarzwald

Kristin Fuchs welcomes me with the greatest friendliness, you notice immediately when you enter the house for the first time that you are welcome and in good hands here. My junior suite is in the Sonnhalde house, and through the back window I can see goats and sheep grazing on the edge of the forest. Their milk is ripened into delicious cheese in the hotel's own cheese dairy, so I look forward to breakfast all the more. As a frequent traveller, I really appreciate the pillow menu in the room, which offers a selection of ten pillows with various fillings and shapes, from spelt to down to cherry stone filling. Every little ailment is catered for!

My way from my suite down to the (annexed) main building with the restaurants led me again and again through entire corridors of rooms full of toys and much more to delight the little guests. So families also get their money's worth, parents relax in the spa, while the little ones let off steam in the playrooms. This is how you catch future guests... Talking to other holiday guests confirmed my impression. Quite a few have spent regular holidays here with their parents or even grandparents from an early age, and the loyalty to the house lasts a lifetime for most of them. And to make sure there is never a dull moment, father Fuchs, a gifted hunter, offers cooking and sausage courses with a focus on game. Be sure to book!

Spielweg
Spielweg

Fox devil wild. I encounter this catchphrase here at every turn, and it couldn't be more apt for the younger of the two Fuchs sisters, Viktoria. Now a national celebrity in the German culinary scene - also thanks to her TV kitchen battle against Tim Mälzer - the likeable whirlwind rules over kitchen, cellar and an impressive crew. On the one hand, her cooking is indebted to the immense variety of game that the Black Forest produces, but Viktoria also manages the balancing act with Asian influences in her dishes. A yellow Thai curry, for example, she served with wild boar fillet, it was delicious! In addition to southern German specialities such as Maultaschen or Kalbsbäckle, trendy dishes such as ceviche or dim sum can also be found on the daily changing menu. This ensures that even guests looking for a longer rest will never get bored with their palate here. From the large selection of German wines, it is best to let the competent sommelier advise you.

The hikers' and mountain bikers' paradise here is an invitation to take a sporty approach to the mornings, treat yourself to a plate of wild charcuterie on your return and let the late afternoon fade away in the sauna and by the pool. And while you're at it, start thinking about the delicacies from Viktoria's kitchen that will bring the day to an end...

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