RESTAURANT VALENTIN SORG, 50 rue Vieux-Marché-aux-Vins. A distinguished, long-established house directed by the Sorg family for almost a century. You will find several masterful dishes here, flawlessly prepared. Among them are foie gras chad à Palsacienne, écrevisses bordelaise, bécasse flambé, bomard à Paméricaine, souffiés, and crêpes au kirsh.
RESTAURANT ZIMMER, 8 rue TempleNeuf. A local favorite where coq au Riesling and choucroute garnie are served in their full splendor.
Colmar, the beautiful city which was mentioned so often in the dispatches of both World Wars, has survived with relatively few blemishes. Bartholdi, the sculptor of the Statue of Liberty, was a native of Colmar. You will find several examples of his work scattered about the town. But speaking of sculpture, you will rarely if ever find a more sculptural restaurant than the famed RESTAURANT DES TÉTES in Colmar. This extraordinary, steep-roofed Renaissance house teems with scores of sculptured stone heads. After you have surveyed this grimacing gallery, you will find some tempting local dishes served in antique salons in the interior. Among them are civet de lièvre, perdrix au choucroute, écrevisses à la nage, truite au bleu, and a delicious Munster cheese served with a shaker of caraway seed.
Other recommended stopovers in Alsace are, alphabetically:
CHATENOIS (Bas-Rhin)—Hôtel de la Gare
HAUT KOENISGBOURG (Bas-Rhin)—Hotel Schaenzel, a picturesque hotel in the pines, specializing in foie gras, pâtés, coq en pâté, and quiche Lorraine.
KAYSERBERG (Haut-Rhin)—A delightful country inn located in the wine country.
MARLENHEIM (Bas-Rhin)—Hôtel Cerf
MOOSH (Haut-Rhin)—Hôtel de France et Relais 66. An agreeable inn where meals are served in the garden under the close supervision of the patron lui-même.
OBERSTEINBACH (Bas-Rhin)—Restaurant Anthon. Good regional food in a sylvan setting.
RIBEAUVILLÉ (Haut-Rhin)—Restaurant Pépinière. A summer restaurant located on the outskirts of a delightful wine village.
SCHIRMECK (Bas-Rhin)—Hôtel Donon. A simple inn at the water's edge, where you can savor trout and Alsatian dishes.
STAMBACH (Bas-Rhin)—Hôtel Fameuse Truite. A large and recognized inn located in a valley on the banks of the Zorn. As the name suggests, they serve beautiful trout, and many another Alsatian chef d'oeuvre, together with some exceptional Gewurztraminer and Sylvaner wines.
WASSELONNE (Bas-Rhin)—Hôtel de la Gare.
WISSEMBOURG (Bas-Rhin)—Hôtel Ange, famed for its pâté en croute à la gelée.
For Those fortunate gourmets who are sailing or flying to France this year, here is a handy checklist of the restaurants and hotels already recommended by Samuel Chamberlain in “An Epicurean Tour of the French Provinces” which begin in GOURMET'S March issue.