Dining in Germany: Schanz***

I have good memories of my first dinner at Schanz back in 2014, read my review here. Thomas Schanz became the chef in the hotel-restaurant of the Schanz family in 2011, received his first Michelin star in 2012, second in 2015, and now in 2022 the third star.

The third star is so recent that the sign outside has been improvised. I’ve been wanting to go back since our first visit, but time flies and I had still not finished all of the Mosel wines I acquired during my visit to the region in 2014. But the third star was more than enough reason to make a detour on our trip to Burgundy to eat here.

The hotel has nice rooms and good rates, so it is very practical to stay there when eating at the restaurant. For 614 euros (excluding beverages) you can stay at the hotel and have the six course degustation for 2. The wine pairing is 102 euros per person.

The first round of greetings from the kitchen was excellent. I especially liked the beef carpaccio with caviar and crostini inside.

Next was the chef’s signature truffle egg, absolutely delicious.

The final amuse bouche was mackerel tartare with radishes and radish ice cream. The mackerel was impeccably fresh and not at all fishy like mackerel can be.

The first wine was a Mosel Riesling Spätlese that was quite sweet and rich but also refreshing.

It was a fantastic pairing for the foie gras cake with parmigiano reggiano slivers and aged sherry, plus profiteroles stuffed with foie gras ice cream. The cake had a perfect crispy base and wonderful contrast between sweet, sour, and savory. 10/10!

The next wine was a Viognier from the Northern Rhone valley, just outside of the Condrieu appellation. It had the typical floral and tropical aromas of Viognier and low in acidity.

This was another perfect pairing with red mullet with white and green asparagus, lemon zest, and an aniseed nage. Nage is a fancy French word for what is basically a seafood broth. The aniseed flavor was just right, not overpowering but tying everything together. The asparagus was nicely crunchy and the fish cooked just right. There was also a thin topping on the fish that I liked, which I think was a sundried tomato tapenade. Another 10/10.

Dr Loosen is a famous producer from the Mosel and this Riesling from old vines in Ürziger Würtzgarten was a great example of a dry Mosel Riesling.

It was a good pairing with the poached hake with herbs (chervil if I am not mistaken) and a hibiscus-orange blossom vinaigrette. The fish was perfectly cooked, very tender and juicy, and a good combination with the original vinaigrette. 9/10

This Mosel Riesling Kabinett was produced by the father of the chef back in 1999 from the Piesporter Günterslay vineyard. The was very elegant but still quite alive despite its age.

It was a good pairing for the fricassée of grilled lobster and head of veal, with Annabelle potatoes in a lobster and plum broth with mint oil. The Riesling paired very nicely with the plums and mint and this was a nice dish. The lobster had perfect texture, but the flavor of the lobster was hard to taste because of all the other flavors. 8/10

A blend of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot from Northern Spain was the next wine.

It was a good pairing with lamb cutlets with parsley, runner beans, greek yogurt, and artichoke stuffed with sweetbread. The lamb was perfectly cooked and very tender and juicy. The stuffed artichoke was delicious. A very nice dish, 9/10.

The dessert wine was a sweet Mosel Riesling Auslese that was still quite fresh rather than sticky.

It was just sweet enough for the dessert: a meringue stuffed with grapefruit, with sourcream and saffron. I thought it was original to use saffron in a dessert and it worked well.

Next was a frozen prickly pear stuffed with Riesling mousse.

The petits fours were outstanding, 10/10.

We had a great dinner at Schanz that was certainly worthy of three Michelin stars in terms of food and wine pairings. The food was original, elegant, beautifully presented, and the technical execution flawless. 9.5/10 for the food.

Compared to our previous visit the improvement of the wine pairings was even more noteworthy, as it was already clear to me 8 years ago that Thomas Schanz is a very talented chef. I applaud that local wines are used in the wine pairings, especially if a restaurant is located in a famous wine producing region like the Mosel. But there are no suitable Mosel wines for all dishes. This time around a French and a Spanish wine were inserted to fill in the gaps. All of the pairings were good, with most of them very good and some even outstanding. 9.5/10 for the wine as well.

The service of bread and water was not at the level that can be expexted from a restaurant at this level. When we ran out of bread it was not replaced, and even when we asked for it there was no new bread. Then when they cleared away the bread plates and we asked for more bread, the bread did arrive, but the missing bread plates were not replaced. Topping up water was erratic: very often initially, and then later not at all. When the check came we thought perhaps the serving staff was embarrassed about the water because the restaurant charges an outrageous 10 euros per 0.75 litre bottle of still water. Even with the expensive water, Schanz still offers good value for money, and the issues with the bread and water were not a big deal for us. Please note that you should not be in a hurry when eating at Schanz: we started at 7:30pm and the main course of lamb arrived at 10:30pm.

We will be back!

6 thoughts on “Dining in Germany: Schanz***

  1. Thank you so much for taling us along – I clearly remember the first time you were there ! Interesting menu . . . have had two ‘reads’ and shall scroll back again already to learn more about the wines. Three different kinds of fish used . . . again interesting to follow – am at the moment enjoying the British MasterChef Professionals – last night there were comments made of the relative difficulty in getting mackerel torched correctly ! There was also quite a discussion on savoury ice creams – must admit am wondering how the radish one would taste !! Must say the cost factor is more than fair for what one enjoys . . . a lovely dinner to remember !

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, I used the term, as usually done here, especially at our MasreChef competitions – ie an ice cream containing a ‘savoury’ ingredient and/or having a taste , to some degree at least, opposite to ‘sweet’ – served either as dessert (yes – happened last night !) – or as an accompaniment (less often) to a savoury dish as twice in your menu. The last few I remember have been parsnip, curry, 5-spice etc. Remember a few times the judges stating they did not expect the ‘salty’ quality to work but it did ?

        Liked by 1 person

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