10 ideas for visits in Alsace for gourmands (and gourmets!)


Are you a gourmet visiting Alsace? You've come to the right place: here we like to eat and drink well! Numerous companies in the gastronomy sector open their doors to you for visits to discover the secrets behind the manufacture of their products and for tastings...In addition to the delicious traditional restaurants, here are some ideas for gourmet visits to be made in the region.

Laurène is the blog's creator. Originally from Brittany but now living in Alsace, she has fallen in love with her adopted region and loves exploring its every nook and cranny to unearth great ideas to share with you!

1. Visit to the Maison de la choucroute (Le Pic sauerkraut factory) in Meistratzheim

Visiting a sauerkraut factory in Alsace, that seems quite logical, no? Sauerkraut is usually the dish that comes to mind when you think of Alsatian culinary specialties (which are not just that, fortunately!). But sauerkraut with fillings is also only one of the dishes that can be made with sauerkraut, there is in fact a wide variety of possible recipes. Did I lose you? Let’s make a small point of vocabulary: sauerkraut refers to fermented cabbage while the dish with meat you are probably thinking of is a garnished sauerkraut. There are other uses for sauerkraut: in a fish sauerkraut for example, but also in many other recipes and, as is often less well known, in cooking raw sauerkraut. In any case, sauerkraut is an emblematic food of Alsace!

Visiting a sauerkraut factory in Alsace allows you to immerse yourself in the history of the sauerkraut maker’s trade as well as in the manufacturing process of Alsatian sauerkraut, which is protected by a PGI. Its characteristics? It is long, thin and white (or very pale yellow). The Maison de la Choucroute, created by the Le Pic sauerkraut factory in Meistratzheim, not far fromObernai, welcomes visitors all year round to help them discover this typically Alsatian product and the know-how of this family-owned sauerkraut factory. It is necessary to call in advance to make a reservation, as tours are only conducted with a guide.

The visit begins with a tasting of kougelhopf with sauerkraut (very good!), followed by the projection of a small film, well dated but allowing to understand the various stages of manufacture, since the culture of the cabbage until the moment when, transformed into sauerkraut, it finishes in a plate. The sauerkraut itself, resulting from natural lacto-fermentation, is very healthy. What is less so is often what is added to accompany it!

It is also possible to have a look at the workshops through glass windows (for sanitary reasons, it is not possible to enter). Depending on the period, you may see all or part of the production. Otherwise, you will have to be satisfied with the explanations of your guide. It’s a real business, so it’s normal that not everything can be visible all the time! September through November is the busiest time of year, so don’t hesitate to come then if you can.

The visit of the sauerkraut factory ends with a tasting. On the menu, raw sauerkraut, cooked sauerkraut and sauerkraut confit. Afterwards, you can go to the store to stock up on sauerkraut and other Alsatian products…

  • Understanding how sauerkraut is made
  • Learn more about the PGI Choucroute d’Alsace
  • To have the explanations of a guide and to be able to ask questions
  • The tasting 😛
  • Not to see the production because the factory was not producing that day (even if it is normal!)
  • The film could use a little sprucing up

2. Cellar visits to Alsace winemakers

One of Alsace’s must-sees is, of course, the Wine Route… and its winegrowers! You can book tastings as well as tours of the estates and cellars. A great opportunity to discover this important part of Alsatian culture!

3. Visit to Confitures du Climont in Ranrupt

The jams of Climont are artisanal jams produced in Alsace, in the Valley of the Bruche. Heading up the workshop is Fabrice Krencker, voted best jam-maker in France in 2010 by the Confrérie de la Marmite d’Or. It’s well worth a visit and a tasting, isn’t it?

The Climont jam workshop is a bit lost but worth a detour for all jam lovers. Just the smell when you arrive at the parking lot makes you want to… They are made only with sugar and fruit, nothing else. Most of the fruit is purchased during the season and then frozen, so that jams can be made all year round. It is possible to visit the small laboratory where the jams are cooked and to have very interesting explanations. We even have some tips on how to make perfect jams at home!

Then, let’s go for the tasting! The jams of Climont count more than 35 kinds of jams and jellies, that you can taste all. They are delicious. The jar isn’t cheap, but quality comes at a price.

My favorite? Cruelty. Yes, you read that right: the jam is made with sugar and fruits that are dried in the sun. It is not cooked but it keeps very well too. The result is tasty, with a very pronounced fruit taste. I left with a jar of raspberry jam and one with rhubarb and elderflowers. A marvel!

  • Visit the workshop where the artisanal jams are made
  • Taste the different jams, crufits and syrups
  • Friendly welcome
  • The place is a bit far from everything (but it is well indicated!)
  • Prices in the store a little high

4. Discover how gingerbread is made in Gertwiller

Gertwiller is the capital of gingerbread in Alsace since the 18th century. If you love gingerbread, you’ve come to the right place: it really is an Alsatian speciality! There are still two major manufacturers in Gertwiller today: Lips and Fortwenger. Both companies have a small museum that can be visited. You can also see the gingerbread making workshops.

Lips House – Museum of gingerbread and Alsatian folk art

The Gingerbread Museum at the Lips House is a small and original museum. On the ground floor, the gingerbreadworkshop, where many steps are still done by hand. You can taste different kinds of this delicious cake. For my part, I had attended the gingerbread decorating for the Christmas holidays. A great job!

On the first floor, a huge collection of Alsatian folk art: dishes, furniture, ceramics… It is messy but it has charm, especially since the building itself is already superb.

Just go to the store to bring back some good gingerbread, plain or more original. My favorite: the gingerbread with fig. Note that I prefer Lips’ gingerbread to Fortwenger‘s: it’s really less dry and better in my opinion 🙂

  • Assist in the decoration of gingerbread. The manufacturing must be great too!
  • Taste different gingerbreads
  • The museum is full of surprises: a real dive into the Alsatian culture!
  • You have to wait in line in the store to buy your tickets: in busy periods, it’s a bit long.
  • The museum is rather cluttered, less playful than the Fortwenger Gingerbread Palace

Gingerbread Palace of Fortwenger

The visit to the gingerbread palace in Fortwenger starts with a playful museum where you can learn more about the history of gingerbread and its composition. The sets are very well done and the place is lively, ideal for children.

We then enter theworkshop of manufacture of the gingerbread. You can see the different steps of preparation of the decorated gingerbread (the big hearts for example). These are made entirely by hand, while the others are manufactured on a production line. We don’t see this channel live but an explanatory film shows images of it.

The visit ends with the store, where you can find a lot of good things and nice products. This can be an opportunity to buy a decorated gingerbread to offer, for example!

  • Attend a few steps of the gingerbread making process
  • Fun museum, nice for children
  • The tasting
  • I would have liked to know what I was eating during the tasting, everything is in bulk
  • Less traditional objects than in the Lips House

5. Tour of Alsace breweries

As well as wine, beer is a typically Alsatian product… You can of course taste it (in moderation) during your visit to Alsace, but you can also visit breweries and discover how beer is produced.

6. Visit to a Munster farm and cheese dairy

Alsace is a region where cheese is produced, in particular the famous Munster. To visit a real cheese dairy and discover the secrets of making Munster, visit the Versant du Soleil farm.

7. Chocolate workshop at Daniel Stoffel

The Daniel Stoffel chocolate factory in Ribeauvillé, a village on the Alsace Wine Route, regularly organizes workshops around… chocolate, of course! I had already participated in a chocolate workshop a few years ago at Daniel Stoffel’s and had really enjoyed it. So I repeated the experience with great pleasure and was not disappointed. We are always welcomed and the workshop allows us to make beautiful discoveries.

An Alsatian and family chocolate factory

The Daniel Stoffel chocolate factory is a well-known chocolate factory in Alsace. It is a family chocolate factory created in 1963 and now owned by the founder’s children.

There are three stores in Alsace: Ribeauvillé, Haguenau and Mundolsheim. Places where it is impossible to leave without having filled up on chocolates because the products are so tempting! You can find chocolate candies, mouldings, spreads but also chocolate bars of different origins. The chocolate factory offers traditional recipes but also more original ones. Something to satisfy all the gourmands, besides there are even vegan or sugar-free chocolates.

Various chocolate workshops for young and old

Workshops on different themes and for different audiences are offered. I tested theChoco’Vino workshop, which allows you to taste chocolate and wine at the same time. What better combination than this one when you are on the Alsace Wine Route, right? 😉 The workshop officially lasts about 1 hour, but count on a little more time because you will be welcomed by the team of the chocolate factory, to whom you will be able to ask questions: it quickly takes a little more time! I really enjoyed this workshop

The workshop begins with a short film presenting the chocolate factory, then moves on to the tasting stage. I found the tasting, which was done with very different chocolates, really impressive. One becomes fully aware of the influence of what one eats since, depending on the chocolate, the wine seems very fruity and quite sweet or more acidic and fresh…

After this excellent moment, both greedy and rich in learning, we go to the chocolate factory where we are welcomed by the master chocolate maker, who presents the different stages of chocolate making from the cocoa bean to the bar. An opportunity to learn new things, but also to taste chocolate again!

  • Be surprised by the tastings
  • Workshop rich in learning
  • Opportunity to ask lots of questions
  • Want to buy everything in the store 😛

8. Visit the chocolate museums of Alsace

It’s impossible to talk about indulgence without mentioning chocolate, isn’t it? In Alsace, you’ll find two museums dedicated to chocolate (click to read articles about each):

9. Visit to artisan distilleries

And here again are some delicious products to be consumed in moderation, and whose secrets you can discover during a visit: strong spirits such as eaux-de-vie, liqueurs, but also gin, whisky, pastis… from Alsace, yes!

10. Visit to Confiserie des Hautes Vosges

Let’s go to the other side of the Vosges to Plainfaing, in Lorraine. This is where the Confiserie des Hautes Vosges is located, well known to all gourmands. They have been making candy by hand since 1986. Personally, I got to know them when I arrived in Alsace and I liked them right away: they have the tasty taste of the old-fashioned candies. Fir honey, raspberry, poppy, Vosges resin or Nancy bergamots and soft candies with mirabelle plum alcohol, everyone can find his happiness!

It is possible to visit the Confiserie des Hautes-Vosges every day (except Sunday), without reservation. I had heard great things about this tour and was not disappointed, it is fun and interesting for both children and adults. The confectioners show step by step how they make the sweets: cooking the sugar to which glucose syrup is added, then adding the natural flavors and colorings, working and cooling the dough and finally molding the sweets (then tasting them by the visitors!). My favorite part? The work of the candy dough, shiny and colorful: a great show!

After the visit comes the store: the only difficulty will be to avoid bringing the whole store with you… That said, you have to admit that these candies make great little gifts to take home! 😉

  • Attend each step of the candy making process
  • Artisanal candies made with natural flavors and colors
  • Free visit for the whole family
  • The “Candy Museum” part, very small!

Map of gourmet tours in Alsace