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ALSACE Alsace is the quintessential winter destination with its fairy tale like villages, especially with a dusting of snow. The region's vineyards are nestled between the Rhine River in the East and the Vosges mountains in the west. Alsace is famous for its luscious white wines such as Riesling and Gewürztraminer, perfect winter whites. Follow the vineyard trails on the designated Route de Vin and enjoy numerous wine tasting. Base yourself in Riquewihr Base yourself in the enchanting village of Riquewihr with its quaint half-timbered houses, wine bars and fabulous restaurants. From here it’s easy to tour the area. Don’t miss enchanting Eguisheim, voted favourite village of the French in 2017. Colmar is a must-see, this biggish city has a sensational old town, known as “little Venice” thanks to the canal that criss crosses it, lined with gorgeous old houses in every pastel shade there is. Strasbourg is less than an hour's drive away and in the winter the frosted cobbled streets are enchanting; and the museums are cosy! Don’t miss a trip to the Chateau de Kaysersberg, high up on a hill with stunning views, it is atmospheric and fascinating, here you’ll really get a feel for how tough winters were in days gone by! Local specialities are numerous and the influence of neighbouring Germany is strong. Choucroute (sauerkraut) is served everywhere as is baeckeoffe, a meat and wine stew and flammekeuche a delicious thin crust pizza with sour cream. Finish with kugelhopf (see our recipe on page 98) or birewecke, a bread style cake filled with dried fruits and spices – and a lot of Kirsch.
Take a wine tasting: Domaine Dopff open year-round (dopff-au-moulin.fr), the first winemaking house to produce Crémant d’Alsace. Wine and dine: Au Trotthus. Chef Philippe Aubron cooks up a storm in this beautiful, cosy building next to the Dolder Tower, a 13th century landmark. The dishes are beautiful to look at and seriously delicious, his apple pie and home-made ice cream is probably the best you will ever taste. A memorable restaurant. (trotthus.com). Stay at: Hotel L’Oriel in an ancient building, right in the centre. It’s so pretty it looks as if it’s made out of gingerbread! The hotel bar is great to relax in with a glass of wine and in winter this cosy nook is just about perfect.
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