The sun was shining brightly with some high clouds floating over the Pfänder and we woke to a lovely spring morning to the sounds of birds singing and the cows mooing softly in the background. Franz and I had a quick cup of coffee and hopped in the car and made our way out to the Bregenzerwald for a leisurely stroll along the Bregenzer Ache near Langenegg. The prolific dandelions, blue cornflowers, violet thistles, and yellow wild flowers filled the blooming meadows as we drove pass the idyllic wooden houses and carefully tended farm gardens. It was a quiet Sunday morning as we admired the pristine local landscape. The brown eyed cows were grazing slowly in the fields feasting on the bountiful grasses and new flowers that will find its way into the wonderful flavors of the sharp cheeses that this region is world famous for. The sparkling water of the river beckoned us with its lovely symphony as it made its way along the rocks and sands that line the small canyon. This path was originally occupied by the Bregenzerwaldbahn, a small railroad that connected the farming regions with the major cities of Lake Constance, but now it has been converted to a walking and biking path. In the past few years local artists have constructed out of wood pieces of artwork that adorn the trail and fit beautifully into the natural terrain that is overflowing with natural herbs and berries such as oregano, Bärlauch, blue berries, and wild raspberries. During the warmer months this is an ideal place to get away from the busy Bodensee and find a quiet and cool place to park yourself for the afternoon to read a book or as many families do grill a few sausages and swim in the refreshing pools along the river.
After completing our relaxing walk and enjoying the fresh spring air it was time for lunch. One of my favorite times of day. In the small nearby village of Langenegg we found a gem of a restaurant. The name is Hotel Krone. It is a four star hotel and has a beautiful ambience. The dining room is wonderfully decorated in a typical Bregenzerwald style and the food was excellent. We enjoyed a succulent spring meal. Franz began with a Brätspätzle/veal dumpling soup and his main course was a young goat with a delicious sauce, polenta cheese, and steamed buttery lauch/leek. I had freshly steamed white asparagus that is a speciality of this time of year and steamed new potatoes. To top off this vegetarian delight was a creamy hollandaise sauce made from the local cheese – super yummy! And for dessert we shared a fried dough dumpling rolled in bread crumbs and sugar and filled with vanilla ice cream with a side of strawberry sauce. It was a throughly enjoyable meal in a beautiful setting with impeccable service given by our charming waitress. Life doesn’t get any better. What a way to end our Sunday morning stroll!