We can now say we love beer so much we’ve bathed in it. Well, sort of. We bathed in water with hops, malt and yeast – deconstructed beer, basically. More on that later.
We left Innsbruck by train to Salzburg, where we connected with a local train to Lamprechtschausen. We were then picked up and driven to Franking, where the Landhotel Moorhof spa sits among farmland and fields as far as the eye can see. Our 48-hour stay included breakfast, dinners (one of which was a beer dinner) and two spa treatments. A family-owned establishment, our experience was coordinated by Bernhard Bauer.
On our first night, we had a beer dinner, much different than any other we have experienced. Because instead of focusing on how the food and beer would compliment each other, all aspects of this dinner were made with beer. The first course was a beer yeast soup, for example. Sound crazy? But it was delicious. The best soup we’ve ever had. It was creamy, but had no cream. The croutons managed to stay crunchy the whole time we were eating it. It had an herbal taste.
For the second course, we were served broccoli fritters fried in a beer batter. Also delicious. Creamy, crunchy. Accompanied by some sort of dill sauce. Next we had stuffed chicken breast in a beer sauce with potato croquettes and vegetables. The sauce was great and paired well with the chicken, but the star of this course were the croquettes, dipped in the sauce. We were so full at this point but we couldn’t leave any uneaten. Dessert was a crepe made with beer, filled with reduced cranberries. A lovely way to end an amazing meal.
Paired with the meal were three beers from Austrian brewery Schnaitl – the pils, the original and the dunkel. All great beers, all went well with our dinner. But what really shone through was the food.
The next day we were given the beer bath treatment. Basically a hot tub with malt, hops, and yeast bubbling in it. Only instead of an actual hot tub, it looked like a beer barrel. And it smelled like brew day. Sitting in the beer bath, Bernhard brought us each a Schnaitl pils to enjoy (at 11 a.m. No problem in Austria). After about a half hour in the bath, we were wrapped in linens and relaxed on a bed of hay. No joke. This was the most relaxed either of us had ever been. We smelled like brew day, were lying wrapped up like burritos, dozing on hay. Is that the life or what?
The only drawback from this experience was washing off the grains and hops, which we did before we could partake in any more wellness activities. We then enjoyed massages, lounging by the indoor pool gazing out at the Austrian countryside, and another fine meal. We were sorry to leave.