Monday, March 11, 2013
We had a good number of personal recommendations for places to visit during our trip. Some were little holes in the wall like "the best steakhouse ever!" and others were suggestions for towns. Leavenworth came to us recommended by a friend of Amanda's mom and her description was right on target: a little cozy über-German town that hosts amazing Octoberfest and Christmas celebrations. Unfortunately, the timing was not quite right for us to see any special festivities, but we visited the town on a normal day and still had a great time.
I actually have a pretty far-reaching German history - growing up I went to a "German specialized" school (most schools in Russia had some sort of academic focus, where curriculums included a heavy load of languages, math, science, or arts), so I've been studying German since 2nd grade. I've been to Berlin on an exchange program in 6th grade, and more recently I toured parts of Germany during my 2 month study abroad in Switzerland during college.
Leavenworth definitely has a ton of European small town appeal. It's tucked away pretty much in the middle of nowhere on a singular through-road to Wenatchee National Forrest. This tiny town in the Northwestern wilderness is full of beer gardens, Bavarian-style lettering on ALL business signs, and purveyors of good sausages. Needless to say, our dinner was filled with bratwurst, sauerkraut, and at least 4 different mustards (well, hold the mustard for Amanda!), chased with a stein of German-style beer. It was heavenly!
We got into town pretty late and after dinner we drove out of town and relied on pretty blind luck to come across a National Forrest Campground. We found one after a couple of failed attempts and turned in for a peaceful night of sleep. The next morning, we came back to Leavenworth to fully document all the Bavarian-inspired art and buildings, window displays full of Black Forrest cuckoo clocks, and wagons of beer barrels parked in the town square with lederhosen-wearing proprietors luring in the tourists.
If you're in town and looking for an amazing breakfast, be sure to check out Good Mood Food. We had a giant vegetable quiche, a breakfast wrap, and side salads that were amazing!
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