Sunday, May 29, 2011
Dom, da Dom Dom Dom!
Friday, May 27, 2011
Today was all about the Dom or cathedral in Köln. We awoke and ate breakfast at our hotel. The hotel breakfast was very tasty and there was a lot to choose from. I even snagged a packet of nutella and some babybel cheese to snack on later.
We got to the Dom at 11:45 and a prayer service was scheduled for 12 pm. They generally clear out all of the tourists for services, we decided to stay for the service. The service was in German but they did provide a flier with the English translation. There was a mens choir that sang a few songs and it was really quite a lovely service. After the service we walked around the cathedral taking pictures of the beautiful windows and the 140 foot high ceiling that makes you feel so incredibly small. The Dom truly is amazing and a great reason to stop in Cologne.
After wandering around the cathedral we completely switched gears and walked towards the Rhein and more importantly, the chocolate museum. The chocolate museum is run by the Lindt chocolate company. The museum begins with a history of where chocolate comes from and how it came to Europe. It was pretty interesting and there is a lot more to chocolate than what comes out of the factory. The museum also has a greenhouse rainforest that shows you what a cocoa trer looks like.
The best part of the museum was seeing the chocolate getting made in the factory. While I'd seen it on Unwrapped it was still mesmerizing to watch the machine make the chocolates. In this room there is a gigantic chocolate fountain and a woman dips wafer cookies in the chocolate and gives them to you! It was very yummy, it makes me even more excited for Belgian chocolate!
The museum ends with a look at chocolate advertising and old vending machines. There was even an area dedicated to the cult of candy, very cool.
After leaving the museum we were ready for some food so we grabbed a pretzel and kept walking to find a place with supposedly amazing desserts. We found it and ordered Ghoulash with noodles and coffee. After the real food we ate the mpst delicious chocolate cake. The layers were so thin and it was cake and mouse with a ganache topping over marzipan. Incredible!
We walked back to a plaza that we had walked past before to find it all set up for a wine festival. We wanted to try some local wine to compare it to the wine from the Mosel valley region. We settled on a stand from.a winery along the Rhein and I had a dry reisling. We had to search a bit for a place to sit and once we did sit down it began to sprinkle and then it turned into a serious downpour. We were lucky to find some seats under an umbrella but the rain took away some of the ambience so we stayed until the rain ended and then headed back towards the hotel. We wanted to get some more pictures of the Dom but there was a concert obstructing the view. We thought about going out again but decided rest was more important. Cologne was cool but I never really got a feel for the city, I felt this way about Copenhagen as well. Tomorrow we leave for Brussels and so far the consensus from people we talk to is "why would you stay overnight in Brussels?"