Monday, April 28, 2014

Lunch at an Iconic Restaurant in Baden, Germany: Restaurant Schwarzer Adler

Pictures: Christian G.E. Schiller at Franz Keller’s Schwarzer Adler in Oberbergen

When I got interested in “fine dining” in the 1970s, Franz Keller’s Schwarzer Adler in Oberbergen was certainly a place one had to go and eat there. Indeed, we did this many times over the years.

With this background, Annette incorporated a lunch cum wine tasting at the Restaurant Schwarzer Adler during the upcoming Sun-kissed South Germany Tour by ombiasy PR and WineTours

As part of the recent pre-tour visits, Annette and I had lunch at the Schwarzer Adler and also visited the impressive, new winery of Fritz Keller, half a mile down the road from Restaurant Schwarzer Adler.

Pre-tour Visits: Schloss Neuweier, Franz Keller, von Gleichenstein, Dr. Heger and Restaurant Schwarzer Adler - The Sun-kissed German South (Germany-South) by ombiasy

Picture: Christian G.E. and Annette Schiller at Franz Keller’s Schwarzer Adler in Oberbergen

The Franz Keller Empire

The founder of the Keller Empire is the late Franz Keller. Franz Keller (1927 – 2007) probably was Germany’s most important early proponent of fully-fermented, dry wines and the use of barriques. He had 2 sons. One of them – Franz Keller - was initially the Chef of Restaurant Schwarzer Adler, but eventually moved to Hattenheim in the Rheingau, where he is the owner and chef at the Adlerwirtschaft. The other one – Fritz Keller – took over from his father in the 1980s and expanded the empire further.

Pictures: Annette Schiller and Bettina Keller

Today, the Keller empire comprises a luxury hotel (Hotel Schwarzer Adler in Oberbergen), 3 restaurants (the Michelin starred Schwarzer Adler, the more basic Rebstock, just across the street, and the KellerWirtschaft, which is part of the new winery), a fine wine trading company, focusing on Bordeaux and Bourgogne, Weingut Franz Keller (recently joined the VDP, the association of about 200 elite winemakers in Germany) and the Edition Fritz Keller project, a very successful trademark wine project with the discount chain Aldi.

Fritz Keller, in addition to his activity as winemaker, wine trader and restaurateur, is also president of the German football club SC Freiburg.

Restaurant Schwarzer Adler

Schwarzer Adler is a truly iconic restaurant that has been founded by Franz Keller. In the 1 star Michelin category, this traditional restaurant offers a harmonious mix of Baden country charm and elegance. The menu is a successful marriage of French and German cuisine reflecting the frontier on the nearby Rhine River, which is the border between Germany and France. The impressive wine list boasts 2 600 different wines, including a good selection of bottles from both Baden and France.

Pictures: Christian G.E. and Annette Schiller at Franz Keller’s Schwarzer Adler in Oberbergen with Sommeliere Melanie Wagner

Fritz Keller: Elegance, style and hospitality with a perceptible French influence create an unmistakable ambiance at our Restaurant Schwarzer Adler. In the kitchens of master chef Anibal Strubinger and Hubert Pfingstag nearby France is as present as the much-lauded local Baden cuisine. The combination of both these influences at the very highest level forms the culinary character of the house.

Other Restaurants and Hotel Schwarzer Adler

Rebstock is a more basic restaurant, just across the street of the Schwarzer Adler, which has of course different food, but the same wine list as the Schwarzer Adler. The KellerWirtschaft, which is part of the new winery, half a mile down the road from the Schwarzer Adler.

Hotel Schwarzer Adler belongs to the group “Small Luxory Hotels in the World”. It is in the main building, where the restaurant Schwarzer Adler is and also has some rooms in a separate building.

Weingut Franz Keller

With the Keller family everything started with producing and offering outstanding food. Franz and his wife Irma were among the first generation of chefs to start the German revolution in the kitchen more than 50 years ago. In 1969 Franz and Irma Keller and their restaurant Schwarze Adler were awarded one Michelin star. For Franz Keller, the central idea of winemaking was to produce top quality wines that perfectly accompanied the creations in the kitchen. The current generation, Fritz and Bettina Keller have brought the winery to a new level. They just finished construction of a brand new winery that is an architectural landmark, beautifully integrated in the landscape. Their efforts to produce top wines, among them stunning Pinot Noirs, were acknowledged by their selection as new member of the VDP in 2013.

Pictures: Touring the New Winery

Fritz Keller: Initially, everything revolved around gastronomy for the Kellers. To make wines that partner food perfectly has thus always been central to their winemaking. In vineyard and winery, just as in the kitchens of the restaurants, the greatest attention is paid to the raw materials. Only grapes of a select quality – this is our conviction – can go on to develop their own character which speaks of the terroir and the estate.

Trading in Fine Wine

Fritz Keller: Trading in fine wines has been a tradition of more than 100 years in the Keller family. To this day, the focus is on the great wines of Bordeaux and Burgundy: a unique portfolio unequalled in quality and breadth encompassing wines from the most prestigious vineyards and chateaux, completed by selected wines from other European and New World regions.

Picture: The Impressive Storage Cellar

It was the grandfather of the current patron Fritz Keller who started the tradition, selling Kaiserstuhl wines at the turn of the last century to the budding tourist towns and spas of the Black Forest and Alsace, returning with their local wines. Franz Keller built on his father’s efforts and forged invaluable relationships with growers in the Bordelais and in Burgundy – they form the basis of the great selection of first-rate Bordeaux and Burgundy wines that has become the hallmark of Restaurant Schwarzer Adler. Beyond that, there is a selected array of international and (a few) German wines and not least the Champagnes, Ports, Sherries and Digestifs – all of these have just one thing in common: they are of the high standard that our house aspires to.

Edition Fritz Keller

Edition Fritz Keller is a highly successful collaboration of Fritz Keller with Aldi, Germany's legendary discount food retailer. Under the brand name Edition Fritz Keller, he initially (in 2007) produced a Pinot Noir and a Pinot Blanc from Baden, contracting with a great many smaller growers of the region for grapes. In this quest to bring top-quality wine to as many people as possible, Fritz has, as the back label pompously informs us, found inspiration in the "Bauhaus" school of architecture and art. The portfolio has now expanded to more than half a dozen wines.



Greetings from the Kitchen

Ceviche vom Kabeljau mit Mais, Paprika, Violetten Zwiebeln und Crostini

St. Petersfisch mit Pinienkernen auf Rosmarinsauce und Schwazem Venere-Risotto

Medaillons von Vorderwaelder Kalb mit Spaetburgundersauce, Morcheln, Gruenem und Weissem Spargel, und Gnocchi


Erdbeer und Rhabarbar in der Kokoshippe mit Rosenemulsion und Erdbeersorbet

Petits Fours


Last Guest 

Thanks and see you soon again - in September on the  Sun-kissed German South (Germany-South) Tour by ombiasy PR and WineTour, see:

Upcoming in September 2014: Germany Wine and Culture Tour by ombiasyPR - The Sun-kissed German South (Germany-South)
ombiasy PR and WineTours 

This tour is one of 3 tours by ombiasyPR coming up in 2014:
3 Wine Tours by ombiasy Coming up in 2014: Germany-North, Germany-South and Bordeaux

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