Thursday, July 21, 2016

Vacation 2016 - Day 8

Vacation 2016 - Day 8 - 7/21/2016

Posted well after vacation was over, as we felt it was better to sleep late than get up early to blog.

Well, first a few technology updates. My venerable Sony NEX-5N camera died; as it is with most modern electronics, I can get a mint condition used one less than the repairs cost. Item two was the WiFi data hotspot we rented, it worked well most of the time, but on this day it said I had used 30 GB of data (?!) and had exceeded my usage. Finally got this sorted out.

On the way to Köln (or Cölogne) the ship would be passing the town of Remagen, Germany, in the wee morning hours. So I got up extra early, and as I posted on FaceBook, "So I'm standing here on the empty ships main upper deck - outside - at almost 5:00 AM. Why? Soon we will pass the city of Remangen, Germany. Why so early? Well, a few decades ago, my late uncle may have been up that early also. Although he was not on a cruise; he had fought at D-Day, and was part of the Operation Lumberjack, charged with holding Ludendorff bridge, the 'bridge at Remagen,' one of the two surviving bridges over the Rhine. Germany threw everything they had at trying to destroy the bridge; the Allies kept it standing for 10 days; all but guaranteeing a victory."

My uncle used to tell the story hearing a plane coming up the river, but it sounded unusual; it turned out it was a German Messerschmitt jet, that dropped bombs then climbed skyward being futilely chased by the slower propeller-driven Mustangs. In his opinion if the Germans had the jet plane a few years earlier, they may have won WWII.

Did a toast in his - and all soldier's - honor. Was gonna fake it with water; then asked "what would Uncle Bill do?" - real vodka.

Disembarked in the morning after arriving at Köln. The first stop was the cathedral and the more historic part of town. 

What was interesting is the guide - in commenting about how the cathedral only had "minimal damage," didn't really expound on this thought. Meaning damage from what? Was there a war? Was there a world war here in the '40s? That was kind of not really spoken about. 

Apparently there are a lot of mosaics and other detritus left over from the Romans.

The inside of the church we had not seen on our last trip to Köln, but we didn't have much time as there was a service starting. 

We went back to the ship for lunch, then split up so Cindy could stay back and read, and I could come back and shop/explore. Besides stopping at a real high-quality German craft shop for a nutcracker and some other goodies...

...stopped at different bars, as each offered their own Kölsch from their favorite brewer. At the Brauhaus Sion, Aldstat Nord, Köln, had a
Sion Radeberger   |   Sion Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   ?%   |   [8.8]*

Note Kölsch, a top-fermented Lager, is only found inside the city and environs of Köln, Germany. It is served from the tap in small 200 cl tube type glasses, and the waiters will drop a full one on the table if you have not covered your empty glass with a coaster! It is served sightly cool.

Then at Ramazotti - Untere Taschenmacher 3:  
Dom   |   Dom Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   ?%   |   [7.5]

On to Peters Brauhaus, Aldstat Nord:
Peters Radeberger   |   Peters Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   4.8%   |   [7.9]

Then a
Gilden Radeberger   |   Gilden Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   4.8   |   [7.0]

Followed by this at the Haxenhouse:
Veltin   |   Veltins Pilsner   |   Lager, Pilsner, German Pils   |   4.8%   |   [8.8]

Then on to the Beer Museum, which is a great place to have different beers. 

Tried the following; also gave the owner a Spencer Abbey beer:
Mort Subite   |   Gueuze Lambic   |   Ale, Belgian Framboise   |   4.3%   |   [8.5]

Einbecker   |   Ur-Bock Dunkel   |   Lager, Bock   |   %?   |   [7.0]

PT Multi Indonesia    |   Bintang   |   Lager, Pilsner   |   %?   |   [6.0]

And the Das kleine Stapelhäuschen also choked down a curry dog, that Germanic delicacy...
Heinrich Reissdorf   |   Reissdorf Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   %?   |   [8.5]

Finished off at Herings im Martinswinkel
MalzmuhlenSchwartz Muhlen Kolsch   |   Mühlen Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   4.8%   |   [7.0]
before going out to dinner for beer!

Yes a special extra-price event was a Kölsch beer tour with genuine German food. 

At the Malzmuhlen brewery had a fantastic pig knuckle dinner, with a
MalzmuhlenSchwartz Muhlen Kolsch   |   Mühlen Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   4.8%   |   [7.0]

Then on to Sünner im Walfisch, for a
Sünner   |   Sünner Kölsch   |   Kölsch   |   ?%   |   [7.5]

Then to Bierhaus Am Rhein for a
Paffgen Bierhaus am Rhein   |   Paffgen   |   Kölsch   |   5.0%   |   [8.5]

Finally a nightcap (bought in Basel, aboard the Viking Lofn)
Lindeman's  |  Pêche Lambic Pecheresse  |  Ale, Belgian Lambic (blended)  |  2.5%  |  [7.5]

...with the Köln Cathedral in view.

                                                                                                                     *Beer rating scale, 0-10

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