Wandering around the beautiful Petite France area, you have a grand selection of restaurants and Winstubs (Wine Cellars, kind of like an Alsatian pub). One of these, situated on the tip of the Petite France, is Chez L’Oncle Freddy. A relatively new addition to the Strasbourg dining scene.
We had reserved ahead for lunch but this is only really necessary if you want to dine on the terrace area on a sunny day. Inside, the restaurant is cosy and not too dissimilar to the interior design at The Maison des Tetes. Wood panelling and the smell of choucroute are both present just in case you needed a reminder that you’re in Alsace.
The service were really friendly and spoke both English and French. We took our seats near a handy coat rack to hang up your jackets. The menus arrived and featured food typical of the region – just what we were hoping for. Prices here are also very reasonable considering the prestigious location.
I spotted a Strasbourg speciality drink on the menu – a Picon Biere. A beer with a shot of fruit bitters. We ordered up a couple and they were fantastic, really refreshing on a hot day. A couple of French ladies on the table opposite had ordered starters and my god they were huge!
With this in mind, we decided to skip straight to mains. Especially considering that I was wanting to try the famous Choucroute Garnie – a colossal plate of pickled cabbage, sausages and smoked meats, an Alsace speciality. Incidentally on the menu you could actually have Choucroute ‘Colossal’ the size, of which, I dread to think.
The Choucroute arrived looking both daunting and delicious, a creative arrangement of smoked bacon, hams, frankfurter style and smoked knackwurst and a boiled potato sat on top of a mound of pickled cabbage all for €18.50 (£16.23). Across the table from cabbage mountain we also had Duck Breast with Choucroute (of course) and a Red Wine Sauce plus a few crispy potatoes at €19 (£16.66).
I remember a French teacher back at school talking about a trip to France that she went on which included a 6 hour lunch. My guess is she was probably eating Choucroute Garnie. All jokes aside though this plate was delicious, in particular the smoked knackwurst. It’s a real indulgence of top quality meat. The cabbage itself tasted very mild and only slightly salty which is a benefit when you’ve got a ton of cured meat to go with it. I loved it.
Me and my old pal Picon were getting along just fine, but what about the duck? Well that too was superb. A huge portion of superbly cooked (medium) duck along with a rich sauce, salty/sour choucroute and crispy potatoes. The kind of food that leaves you needing a well-earned sit down afterwards.
Sadly, there’s only so much cabbage a man can eat. I waved the white flag and laid down my fork, I was done. The duck, similarly, defeated us as we both gave way to full stomachs. Bravely we examined the dessert menu for anything that could tempt us….
….Guess what, we found something! A dessert that had stood out since planning the trip. The Kugelhopf Glacé, or en Anglais The Iced Kugelhopf. I couldn’t work out if this was a traditional Kugelhopf cake just glazed with icing and served with ice cream or if there was more to it. As it turned out, there was more to it.
We decided to split the dessert between us after catching the dessert’s arriving at the French ladies table – two massive tarts! (the desserts, not the ladies). What arrived at our table was a beautiful set ice cream covered in chocolate resembling the shape of the traditional Kugelhopf.
I’d highly recommend this dessert. The flavours of rum and raisin are prominent throughout the ice cream and along with creme anglaise and whipped cream, just to top up your calorie count, it’s a real treat. At €6.50 (£5.77) it’s money well spent.
The final bill was a modest €50.80. It felt great to have finally sampled the famous Choucroute, even if it did add inches to my waist. The dish is a perfect blend of French and German cooking and is prominent in pretty much any restaurant in the region. When in Strasbourg though, seek out Chez L’Oncle Freddy. A real taste of Alsace.
Opening Times: Daily 1200-1400, 1900-2100
Menu and reservations: https://www.chezlonclefreddy.com