Annals of Travel: Solo in Schwabing

September 29, 2010 at 12:56 AM | Posted in Annals of Travel | 4 Comments
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Mann lived here ...


Despite the phenomenal vibe supplied by learning that I would be eating in the house that Thomas Mann lived in while he wrote Buddenbrooks, his early masterpiece which I have read several times, the restaurant is chilly receiving me, folding its arms. But, after almost tackling the slender Italian Waiter, I have my glass of Soave and a small basket of heavenly bread that had to have been made within the hour and it is stuffed with roasted tomatoes.     

 I am eating at Seerose in Schwabing, Munich. Next to me are two couples, one younger than the other and the older could be the parents. The younger woman is tall, modern and the older woman is elegant in the way that Catherine Deneuve is now, in this latter phase of her goddess-hood, a lioness in winter. Both are strikingly well put together and the elder lady has a dog by her side.     

Deneuve at 52


 The Buffalo Mozzarella opens like a flower in spring,  not like  “fresh” mozzarella that, while always useful, plays only one note and that an accompaniment.     

 It is after 7 PM and people are streaming in. We solitary diners want people, movement, buzz about the room, if not 2 feet in front of us. My second and last glass of wine arrives: a young godfather of a Sicilian Sauvignon Blanc — up front, no longer shy. Lord Barolo has nothing to fear from this wine but still, he must ever eye the cut-throat south. The parpardelle with a ragu of meat, potatoes and something else is delish and, given its richness, I am grateful that the portion is correct and not gigantically off-putting. Now that the joint is filled up and I’ve seen the warm welcome they’ve given others, I realize that this restaurant is for locals.     

A Dream Parpardelle


As I pay my bill I congratulate the waiter on the Sicilian white he selected for me. He is from Palermo and we spend a few moments discussing the glories of his homeland. We shake hands and I leave a local, at least for that one moment.


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  1. Blimey, I assumed you were at Oktoberfest. I’ve never eaten that well in Bavaria – should have had you along obviously.

    • The eating is killing me: awesome dinner in Cologne, great lunch in Bremen and just back from dinner at a farmhouse in the black forest. I cannot fit in my clothes.

      • Yes I remember the quantity (and the density), but it sounds as though you’ve found some quality. No time in UK I take it?

      • I think things foodwise have changed a lot. Every meal I had was anywhere from good to great. Even the pizza was good.

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