The maxim here is “Hauptsach, gudd gess – g’schafft ham’mer schnell”, meaning that having got the job done quickly you are entitled to a good meal. And the cuisine in Saarland is a mixture of good plain cooking and culinary refinement. High on the list of favourites are “Schwenker” (a steak), “Lyoner” (a ring of cold sausage), “Bettseichersalat” (dandelion salad) and a glass of “Quetsch” (plum schnapps). The Michelin restaurant guide has given two stars respectively to Klaus Erfort of Gästehaus Klaus Erfort in Saarbrücken and Christian Bau of Schloss Berg in Perl-Nennig for their culinary expertise. Only eight other chefs in Germany have been awarded more.
The fish market in the working-class quarter of Saarbrücken called Burbach is an insiders’ tip. Fresh fish from the Atlantic and the Mediterranean are delivered here at dawn, and by midday, workers and business people alike are standing in droves around the few tables slurping oysters that are so fresh, you would almost think Saarbrücken was on the sea. And then there’s Gasthaus Woll on Spicherer Höhen, directly across the border, where the German and French armies faced one another in 1870/71. There they serve an Alsatian speciality, “Flammkuchen”.