Dinner is served. Come on in!

We always find it a little peculiar when we hear talk about the Krone restaurant.

We don’t quite fol­low when peo­p­le speak of “the Kro­ne restau­rant” in the sin­gu­lar. If the “best room” in someone’s home is for social gathe­rings, then we can offer quite a choice of best rooms – all of them invi­ting and com­for­ta­ble, spot­less­ly clean, spa­cious yet not too big, and appe­al­ing to the eye with their ele­gant hand-made fur­nis­hings. The­se are best rooms to meet many dif­fe­rent needs: the church­goers’ regu­lar pre-lunch “Stamm­tisch” every Sun­day, the tired but hap­py retur­ning ski­ers and ram­blers, the gol­fers after 18 holes to cele­bra­te or for­get …, the for­mal busi­ness din­ner, the fami­ly cele­bra­ti­on, gour­met evenings, after­noon book club sessions.

The­se plea­sant rooms draw their life and spark­le from our guests and also from our ser­vice team, every mem­ber of which unites pro­fes­sio­nal com­pe­tence and tho­rough­ness with a per­so­nal delight in loo­king after the com­fort of others.

A lot of inte­res­t­ing, enthu­si­a­stic and half-thought things are tal­ked about, writ­ten, blog­ged and rated when it comes to dis­hes and drinks. And I’d be lying if I said we don’t app­re­cia­te Hono­rable Men­ti­ons! But the 7 prin­ci­ples of the Kro­nen kit­chen are and remain cen­tral for us and how the­se are trans­for­med into the satis­fac­tion and enthu­si­asm of our guests.

1. A show of dedication

Coo­king for us is to host a feast

Anyo­ne who loves food and rust­les up a feast will cook what they them­sel­ves love to eat. That is one reason why the Kro­ne team sits down to lunch tog­e­ther every day. We take the time to savour our dai­ly spe­cials and sam­ple new culina­ry con­coc­tions. And if we are whip­ping up a cele­bra­ti­on, we’ll put in ple­nty of elbow grease. That’s why we do our work with dedi­ca­ti­on: plan­ning, sel­ec­ting, clea­ning, com­bi­ning, sha­ping, mari­na­ting, coo­king, brai­sing, can­ning and all the rest.

2. A show of commitment

Less (gimmickry) is more (taste)

Why does the litt­le black dress never go out of fashion? Becau­se it stands on its own, has no need for frills and is beau­tiful in its sim­pli­ci­ty. We don’t sign up to each and every coo­kery fad. We’ll check them out, choo­se what we like. And let the others pass us by.

3. Cook with care

Food is precious

To quo­te Leo­nar­do da Vin­ci: “Kno­wing is not enough; we must app­ly. Being wil­ling is not enough; we must do.” Espe­ci­al­ly when it comes to meat. At the Kro­ne, we take gre­at care to turn all parts of a beast, inclu­ding the sup­po­sedly not so posh bits, into won­derful dis­hes such as the legen­da­ry Kro­ne ragouts. We’ve always tried to make the most of our pro­du­ce and was­te as litt­le as pos­si­ble. 20% of all food throug­hout Euro­pe is thrown away. Some of the reasons behind this awful sta­tis­tic: we buy too much, we don’t store food pro­per­ly, we don’t app­re­cia­te its value and we don’t use our ima­gi­na­ti­on. Our goal is to redu­ce food was­te at the Kro­ne to well below 10%. You might noti­ce that we ser­ve mode­ra­te size side dis­hes. We’d like our guests to be able to finish their pla­tes, so this is deli­be­ra­te. Howe­ver, we also love diners with a hear­ty appe­ti­te so if you’d like a second (or third) hel­ping, just let your ser­ver know.

4. know your suppliers

From source to table in under an hour

Our far­mers, her­ba­lists, fruit and vege­ta­ble gro­wers from the regi­on are more than just sup­pli­ers: they are also tea­chers for us. Their les­sons are inva­luable and we lis­ten careful­ly, reflect, ask ques­ti­ons, query old ide­as, try new things, imple­ment what we’ve lear­nt and add our own twist.

We are also a mem­ber of the cheese rou­te Bre­gen­zer­wald.

5. Use your hands

Hands are tactile. Doing is learning.

In the Bre­gen­zer­wald, we have the good for­tu­ne to be sur­roun­ded by out­stan­ding craft­sman­ship. Manu­al dex­teri­ty counts for a lot in our kit­chen as well. Every day we hone our skills, from plan­ning, sel­ec­ting, dres­sing, sha­ping, mari­na­ting, stir­ring, kne­a­ding, slicing, whip­ping, sim­me­ring, brai­sing, ste­wing, bak­ing, poa­ching, blan­ching, pre­ser­ving and many more hands-on tasks. In this way, we train our instincts every day.

6. Keep it simple

Let the taste do the talking

We don’t drown our food in com­pli­ca­ted hea­vy sau­ces. We like dis­hes with few ingre­di­ents that com­ple­ment each other. Ever tried orga­nic car­rots with a dash of sher­ry? Oder : Bei­spiel von Micha­el und Helene

7. Go with the seasons

There is great pleasure in anticipation

That’s why we don’t ser­ve straw­ber­ries in the deep of win­ter or sau­er­kraut on hot sum­mer days. Throug­hout the year, you’ll hear us chat about all sorts of tasty tre­ats about to come into sea­son: “If the wea­ther holds for ano­ther cou­ple of days, we’ll gather por­ci­ni mush­rooms”, “Tho­se cher­ries from our local fruit far­mer should be just about ripe”, “I found the first blueber­ries today!” We don’t have to ven­ture far to be gifted with nature’s offe­rings. Ten­der fir tips, mea­dows­weet and mush­rooms can be found on forest walks near­by, while any­thing from bee­troot, cur­rant lea­ves and nas­t­ur­ti­um seeds to fruit, salad, vege­ta­bles and flowers thri­ves in the kit­chen gar­dens of seni­or mana­ger Wil­ma, gran­ny Lina and our daughter’s god­mo­ther Bri­git­te. We may be fora­ging in a fair­ly small area but we are very hap­py with our mode­st eco­lo­gi­cal footprint.

Michael Garcia Lopez

Culinary musings of Michael Garcia-Lopez, head-chef at the Krone…

Why do you cook?
Becau­se it’s all I ever lear­nt (laughs). I enjoy­ed coo­king from a very young age. My mum’s from the Bre­gen­zer­wald and tea­ches coo­king, my dad’s Spa­nish – which might explain my basic belief that eating should be more than just put­ting food in your mouth. In my role as a chef I can influence peo­p­le: sha­ring food pro­mo­tes socia­li­sing and clo­sen­ess. For me, this is a won­derful cal­ling! For me, this is a won­derful calling!

What do you like best in your daily work?

Any­thing that takes a long time, like brai­sing bäck­le or sau­ces — I love wat­ching it develop.

And I have lear­nt to real­ly app­re­cia­te pro­ces­sing every part of an ani­mal. If, for exam­p­le, a far­mer from the regi­on offers lamb at Eas­ter, we take the ani­mal as a who­le so that we can real­ly use ever­y­thing: the so-called noble parts for pink roas­ting, the legs for roas­ting, the bel­ly for brai­sing, the Zuputz we use for lamb meat­balls and the rest for jus — i.e. sau­ce. We also pro­cess off­al and why ever not? One of our sup­pli­ers from Schwar­zen­berg said that most hotels will only accept pre­mi­um cuts – we thought that just wasn’t right.

In all of my care­er the Kro­ne is the first place to pro­cess all of an ani­mal. It is important to main­tain good rela­ti­onships with our local far­mers and meat pro­du­cers. If we don’t work tog­e­ther, good qua­li­ty afforda­ble sup­p­ly from the regi­on will dry up. Sure­ly, 100% value crea­ti­on for our regi­on sounds like a decent plan!

Name your three favourite tools…

My pee­ling kni­fe, my mortar and of cour­se my hands. The mortar is ide­al for spi­ces, herbs and seeds that I need for mari­na­des and pick­les. I use the tour­ni­quet for a lot of things, for exam­p­le, for clea­ning vege­ta­bles, which is an almost medi­ta­ti­ve work, but also for pee­ling gin­ger, gar­lic and the like.
My hands I need for sim­ply ever­y­thing, they are sen­si­ti­ve test­ing and mea­su­ring instru­ments, they help me shape the per­fect ravio­li and much more. I have to add, though, that you’ll find me with a kni­fe in my hands most of the time…

What do you enjoy about cooking?

It sim­ply makes me hap­py when we can send a good meal to the guest: Meat on the point, side dis­hes sea­so­ned so that the­re is a coher­ent who­le wit­hout much “Ver-Arbeitung” — today, for exam­p­le, was the Lake Con­s­tance pike perch fil­let with pine nut spin­ach and hor­se­ra­dish pota­to puree — the indi­vi­du­al things com­ple­ment each other ide­al­ly. I’m par­ti­cu­lar­ly thril­led when timing, tex­tu­re and tas­te all unite on one pla­te. Lucki­ly we achie­ve this quite frequently…

I also love put­ting ever­y­thing tog­e­ther for a slow stew… and after 3 hours the result is as it should be: for me this is always pro­of that the basic ingre­di­ents are right and that careful work has alre­a­dy been done before­hand — wit­hout redu­ced jus, for exam­p­le, it does­n’t work.

How would you describe your culinary style?

I’m very hap­py to stick to the seven prin­ci­ples of the Kro­ne kit­chen. I’ll also never for­get a recent expe­ri­ence: during the 2015 should­er I did a pla­ce­ment at the Tan­tris in Munich which has 2 Miche­lin stars. From the­re I went out to eat with Bea­te (restau­rant mana­ger of the Kro­ne) and Sig­rid (sous chef at Tan­tris at the time & cur­rent owner of the Werneck­hof in Munich) — to Klaus Erfort in Saar­brü­cken, who has 3 Miche­lin stars. We had a 15 cour­se meal, abso­lut­e­ly won­derful but what impres­sed me most was a very simp­le in bet­ween dish: boi­led car­rots with warm goats’ cheese, truff­le shavings and jus. It was a reve­la­ti­on and made me rea­li­se that it’s essen­ti­al to com­bi­ne ingre­di­ents well rather than do too much with them. I’ve never for­got­ten this and I try to live by it: few ingre­di­ents with their authen­ti­ci­ty kept intact.

Dietmar Nussbaumer, your Krone host, on Wine

Dietmar, how did you come to be interested in wine?

It appeals to me as a par­ti­cu­lar­ly enjoya­ble and intri­guing part of our dai­ly diet. Also, it’s a natu­ral pro­duct, but with a big human con­tri­bu­ti­on in making it – and the­re are very dif­fe­rent approa­ches both to making it and to drin­king it. I have gre­at respect for wine gro­wers, as the work they do is extra­or­di­na­ri­ly complex.

What wines do you rate most highly?

I think it’s a mat­ter for reg­ret if all wines from a given viney­ard tas­te ali­ke. If the wines have a lot of indi­vi­dua­li­ty depen­ding on vin­ta­ge and ter­ro­ir, that’s much more inte­res­t­ing, and you are then more alert when you are sam­pling them. I tend to go for the smal­ler pro­du­cers, and I pre­fer wines grown on orga­nic and bio­dy­na­mic principles.

Any interesting experiences connected with wine?

Well, one was with Frank John of the Hirsch­horn estate near Hei­del­berg. He’s a bio­dy­na­mic wine grower. I had got in touch to place a wine order. Back by return of post came – not a con­fir­ma­ti­on of my order, but a room reser­va­ti­on. Frank John wan­ted to estab­lish per­so­nal­ly whe­ther the Kro­ne was a sui­ta­ble place to be ser­ving his wines. So it was an inspec­tion. He came down from Hei­del­berg, had din­ner, stay­ed over­night – and appro­ved us as a client.

How do you go about selecting wines for the Krone’s restaurant?

We aim to reflect the Euro­pean wine sce­ne, but with con­sidera­ble empha­sis on Aus­tria. We always tas­te wines here in the Kro­ne befo­re orde­ring, becau­se other­wi­se you can’t be sure it’s right for us. It’s a com­mon expe­ri­ence to go abroad, find some par­ti­cu­lar wine deli­cious, buy half-a-dozen bot­t­les to take home – and then won­der what you had thought was so gre­at about it. So we run our tri­al tastings whe­re we hope to be recom­men­ding them to our guests: right here, in our public rooms, and with the enti­re team participating.

We have very long-standing rela­ti­onships with the wine who­le­sa­lers who sup­p­ly us. So they all know us well, and give us good advice. What can be par­ti­cu­lar­ly hel­pful, obvious­ly, is to chat with the actu­al gro­wers, and we arran­ge that by going to wine fairs or visi­ting the vineyards.

Anything more you’d like to tell us on the subject of wine?

I take pains to ensu­re the wines we invi­te our guests to try are all honest­ly pro­du­ced. Occa­sio­nal­ly this or that wine will not “come” right away; but what we have lear­nt from all our wine-tastings is that indi­vi­du­al­ly and careful­ly pro­du­ced wines – which means, for ins­tance, bio­dy­na­mi­cal­ly grown, hand-picked, natu­ral­ly fer­men­ted and with a long aging pro­cess – are sim­ply much more inte­res­t­ing and cha­rac­terful than mass-produced wine (which is easy to knock back like fruit juice, but lacks depth).


What wine do you most enjoy …

(we asked Diet­mar Nussbaumer)

…after a long walk-?

Adam’s ale! If I’ve been out wal­king I’ll opt for a home-made cor­di­al with Hit­tis­au water, or just plain water.

…for between-times -?

A Mar­tin Gojer Cam­pill from South Tyrol. It’s a dry red, unli­ke the other ones I’ve tried the­re, simp­le and straight­for­ward, but it has depth.

…befo­re a meal -?

A light, fra­grant wine, for ins­tance a white blend from Johann Gis­perg cal­led “Klara’s Wein­gar­ten” – but then I will also enjoy a man­z­a­nil­la from la Gitana.

…by the log fire?

A glass of pinot noir, might be Aus­tria, Switz­er­land, Ger­ma­ny, France, as the whim takes me; or may­be a vin­ta­ge port or a Lake Con­s­tance Subirar from Peter Meus­bur­ger. After din­ner and by the fire­si­de – that requi­res some­thing rather good.

…on spe­cial occasions?

One of the rari­ties from our cel­lar – a Meurs­ault from Coche Dury, a Clos Rouge­ard from Fou­cault, an Her­mi­ta­ge from Jean-Louis Chave. Or a top Blau­frän­kisch, per­haps Roland Velich’s “Alte Reben”, or a Salz­berg from Ger­not Hein­rich, or just any­thing that takes my fan­cy, we have a num­ber of deci­dedly inte­res­t­ing wines down the­re in the cellar.

It’s a good fee­ling, to have some real­ly spe­cial wines to offer. It’s important that we our­sel­ves know what they tas­te like …

But any good wine is one of life’s joys, and that could per­fect­ly well be a very simp­le, clean, honest Grü­ner Veltliner.

It´s a Promise!

Your big day at the Kro­ne in Hit­tis­au: whe­ther you have smas­hed the world record, achie­ved a long-held ambi­ti­on or won the Wim­ble­don sin­gles, got hit­ched, a house of your own or a hundredth bir­th­day… Wha­te­ver the occa­si­on, come to the Kro­ne to cele­bra­te, and be sure your big day will go off in pro­per style. Do brief us ful­ly on all your ide­as and wis­hes. And do bring along any num­ber up to 70 of your fans, fri­ends, exten­ded family…!

We will take care of ever­y­thing else: menus and musi­ci­ans, wines and well-wishers, lon­ger stays and late­co­mers, hila­ri­ty and high old times.
It´s a Promise!