My German teacher suggested we visit noodle manufacturing in Bad Teinach-Zavelstein, two small towns in the Black Forest. My first thought was, “Ahh…okay it’s still in Germany not Italy, right?” Well once again, I was pleasantly surprised and thrilled to discover the many treasures of “small town” Germany.
Bad Teinach sits in the valley just below the town of Zavelstein. Working well together for years, these two towns compliment each other like peanut butter and jelly and chips and dip. Bad Teinach-Zavelstein was once considered the smallest “Stadt” in Baden-Württemberg and over all in Germany. Even in 1975 there were only 250 residents in the town.
On approach from Stuttgart, you’ll first meet Bad Teinach. Here you will find the Teinach river flowing from a tributary of the Nagold river, which provides special mineral water.
If you’ve asked for “Stilles” (still) or “Sprudel” (with bubbles) water in fine restaurants in Baden-Württemberg, most likely you’ve had Teinacher Water. This legendary water is said to possess healing properties from its 1,000 meter deep mineral springs. Very typical of Germany, of course there is a celebration held every year in the first week of August crowning a “Water Queen.”
Next if you follow the tourist signs up a steep mountain hill, you will be led to the neighboring town of Zavelstein. The town was established around 1200. Its castle, which became the refuge for Eberthart II, was built around 1300. A view from the rocky steep overlooks the little town of Bad Teinach below.
Our first stop in Bad Teinach was the Bad Teinacher noodle and chocolate factory. You will find the owner and chief noodle maker, Dietrich Morlok, such a blast. If you visit the website and send him a message, he’ll set up a tour and show you how the factory’s homemade pastas and chocolate are made.
Oh, did I tell you I have fallen in love with the dark chocolate ginger squares? I was told they should be eaten during the winter to ward off sickness. I definitely don’t want to catch a cold, I better eat more.
Only a 30 minute drive from my home, I now have a new favorite store for homemade pastas, grains and chocolates, making Dietrich and his store two of my new besties.
All the pasta at this factory is made with fresh and unique flavors. Buying all of them, we had so much fun checking out the various seasonal flavors of pasta. Some of the noddle combinations are egg free, while others are made with semolina flour. My “must have” is the Barläuch pasta, which is a combination of garlic and onion. It is absolutely delicious with a pesto sauce and sun-dried tomatoes.
This season Bad Teinacher has a delicious chocolate pasta. You are given great chocolate pasta recipes with vanilla sauce and fruits to try at home.
The towns of Bad Teinach-Zavelstein has exceptional tourist signage, so finding the sites to see are super easy. There is free two hour parking areas near the main street, so you will just need to put your blue parking disk in the window.
Following the signs that head to the ruins of Zavelstein, you will pass along the old school, church and town hall.
If you need a potty break, the town hall is usually open and has free bathrooms. This building is the last one on the left before crossing the bridge to the ruins. Here you can also pick up several tourism brochures about their towns, Black Forest tourism and hiking.
One of the big draws of Zavelstein is its ruins. In 1692 the castle was attacked and has remained in ruins ever since. However, the townspeople rebuilt the village around it, and now its majestic views draw people from everywhere. Once a walled in city, you can also hike along the old path that leads out of town.
Famous for its 28 high meter tower and the spectacular sites of the Black Forest, the castle is only open to the public during late spring and summer. Also in July, there is a nature market in the ruins that I hope not to miss this year.
Where to Eat
Oh, my goodness where to eat! We have found some really fun and tasty places to catch a bite to eat while touring Zavelstein. On our first visit, we stopped into Wanderheim Zavelstein. If you’ve read a few of my blogs, you’ll know these hiking food huts are my new favorite research topic. Surrounded by trails and the Black Forest, this guesthouse, playground and restaurant with amazing views is a keeper for sure.
Did I mention the food was GREAT? Yea, it’s the trifecta there. Super friendly and helpful, the Wanderheim also has hiker’s sleeping rooms for very affordable prices during the summer.
We recently stopped in Zavelstein’s amazing Berlin’s Krone Lamm, which is an elegant and almost 5-star hotel and restaurant. It is very busy for a weekday lunch, so be sure to make reservations. This hotel has pools, spas, nightly music in the lounge and it appears to be a locals favorite too. Berlin’s Krone has seasonal specials during the weekends, so it might be worth checking it out.
The Schlossberghütte Bad Teinach, is a new mountain restaurant built in 2015 from trees of the Black Forest. This rustic wooden guesthouse is along a hiking trail and easy to get to by following the signs from the main parking lot in Bad Teinach. The restaurant is cozy and warm and has a nice fireplace.
Spring Blossoms and More
In March the town of Zavelstein comes alive with small crocus blossoms that cover the wide open meadows near the trails north of town. The lovely walk leads you to the Wanderheim Zavelstein and many other hiking trails that lead into the woods.
On your way there be sure to stop by Barbel Ceramic Gift Shop as well as the antique shop.
This April my daughter will be going to a week long painting camp at Barbel’s, and yes I’m super jealous. Not just because she can paint, but also of the places and trails she can discover.
Whether you take a long trip through the Black Forest or a day trip to explore the springs and hiking trails, the towns of Bad Teinach-Zavelstein are definitely a must-see. And don’t be surprised if your day trip from Stuttgart to these two small towns turns into more!
How to Get There
Bad Teinach-Zavelstein is less than an hour southwest of Stuttgart, 2 hours and 10 minutes southeast of Kaiserslautern and 2 hours and 15 minutes south of Wiesbaden. Click on DB Bahn for train details.
Author’s Profile: Wendy Payne is a military spouse and lives with her family in Stuttgart, Germany. She is a freelance writer, blogger and photographer. She also enjoys gardening, hiking, yoga and sharing Europe with people.
Featured Image Photo Credit: © Wendy Payne