From my collection on the road: Check in here from time-to-time to see the latest postings. Please note the content on this page is not included in the Roads to Ruins book.

COASTER(S) (Bierdeckel(n)

Between castle discoveries there will be time for nourishment, tourism and rest. Breweries often produce heavy card coasters to their client drinking and eating establishments for use by customers. A rather pricey practice, many establishments are now poviding simpler paper coasters. I have been fortunate in that I began collecting them decades ago and also received gifts of many more from friends and acquaintences. In this corner I will exhibit a series of photos of these coasters along with what information I have gathered.

Beer coasters forSchlenkerla

Beer: Heller Schlenkerla
City: Bamberg, Bavaria
Brewery: Brauerei Heller

Note: A very dark smoked beer (Rauchbier) that, at best, requires dedication to acquire a taste for. Among many beer lovers it is an Herausforderung Trink (challenge drink.) Its heavy flavor may discourage many from even finishing a bottle. Schlenkerla pioneered smoked beer and helped put modern Bamberg, Germany on the list of must visit beer cities. It can be found in some German delis in the U.S.A.


From my collection on the road: Check in here from time-to-time to see the latest

MUG(S) (Krüg(e)

Not as easily acquired are the mugs (steins) at nearly every Gasthouse you come upon. And, like the coasters, branded krugs have proven too expensive for eating and drinking establishments to continue the tradition. Also, unlike coasters which are often provided free to customers who ask, the mugs, when proprieters are willing to part them, will have to be purchased. Again, I have had the good fortune to have many given to me by family and friends.

These are souvenir mugs purchased from Brauerei-Heller and Maizel in Bamberg. They sport the lids with a flip handles.

beer mugs from Bamberg

These articles are not part of the book, Roads to Ruins




Seek and Enjoy the Villages and Towns

Nearly at the foot of every castle or castle ruin a village or two has been sitting, often for centuries.

More often than not a brewery or two also exists in the region. In Bamberg, a favorite city of mine as you may have noticed above, there was until fairly recently, as many as 300 breweries. Currently the regional number is reported to be 60, with 11 in the city. Bamberg was described as the beer center of Bavaria. It currentlyhosts the Franconian Beer Museum and offers tourMarketplace in the heart of Bamberg, Germany

Today coffee is giving beer a real run for its money. Cafes are a delight to partake in if you are a people watcher on a beautiful summer day. Sipping an espresso in the midst of centuries old structures is somehow a very assuring experience. Be sure wrough iron business signs to take note of the unique signs identifying many of the businesses. They are mostly wrought iron and quite creative.

While I am not German my wife is, and I spent nearly 7 years total in the city. I do not hide my attraction to Bamberg, and you will find just about everything you might seek in Germany exists in Bamberg and nearby cities and villages. Pictuesque town scenes and cobblestone streets, as in numerous German towns, have been preserved. But not many have been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site. During the reign of Henry II, Emperor of the German Nation of the Holy Roman Empire, Bamberg was to be designated as the German capitol. Henry's early death ended that dream. Both Henry and his wife Kunigunde were interred in the Bamberg Cathedral commissioned by Henry.