Fürnheim (Wassertrüdingen)

The pleasant hamlet of Fürnheim is nestled in the bucolic rolling hills at the foot of the Geissberg, just outside of Wassertrüdingen. The latter is your best option for a place to stay in the area with a few restaurants as well. There’s even a small medieval town gate to add a bit of atmosphere. I spent one night and it was enough but perhaps with a car, there would be more to explore in the admittedly scenic area surrounding it.

There are pretty paths for walking/cycling including a nice 7km stretch between Wassertrüdingen and Fünheim. The latter’s big attraction is the small farmhouse brewery/cozy restaurant across the street from the only other sight in the village, St. Nikolaus Church.

Forstquell Brauerei und Tafernwirtschaft (Höhenberger)

 Fürnheim 35
91717 Wassertrüdingen (Fürnheim)
Tel: 09832 96 57
www.forstquell.de

Gunzenhausen station 23 km/Nördlingen station 28km/limited bus from Nördlingen

Opening hours:
April 1st to October 31st:
Daily from 11:00
November 1st to March 31st:
Monday to Thursday from 16:00
Friday to Sunday & holidays from 11:00
Closed Christmas day and New Year’s Eve
Company holiday generally for six weeks in January/February (check website)

Rooms available? (previously so, checking to verify)

Output: 800 HL

Though the Forstquell Brauerei was founded in 1997, the history of brewing on this site dates back to 1400. It was the family Höhenberger Brauerei from 1731 until brewing ceased in 1958. The Oettinger Group became the parent company in 1997 and resumed the age old art, utilizing it as both an experimental brewery but also as a place for training. Direct descendants of the Höhenbergers, the Kollmar family still brew the unique beers in the copper kettles on display in the museum piece pub, with water from their own source. Brewery tours are available with prior arrangement and there is a small brewery museum. If all that weren’t enough, they distill their own beer schnaps and liqueur.

copper kettle & refurbished museum piece pub

The quaint refurbished interior was inviting but it was a gorgeous summer day when I was there so I sat in the lovely shady Biergarten. I got there not long after it opened and I was lucky to get a spot. It had been a hot day and I’d walked 8km to get there so I started with their Forstquell-Weiße, which was truly refreshing.

a refreshing Weißbier in a shady Biergarten

The varied menu is interesting and shows how they straddle different regions, featuring Franconian Schäuferla, Schwäbisch Zwiebelrostbraten and Bavarian Obatzta. They also had some vegetarian options, including a tasty sounding pasta with pesto. It was a warm summer afternoon so I went right to the Brotzeit menu and ordered a pair of Hesselberger Schlotengeli, described as smoked Bratwurst on the menu and evidently a specialty of the area. Offered both cold and warm, my server said most got them without being heated up and once I tasted them, I could see why. It came with a pickle and Kren, the term for horseradish you always see in the Upper Palatinate, next to Czech, where it’s Křen. It’s mostly what you see in Franconia as well, rather than Meerrettich, the more generic German name for it. Well, now I was getting thirsty and moved onto the Forstquell-Gold.

Hesselberger Schlotengeli & Forstquell-Gold

Though the Schlotengeli were tasty, it wasn’t enough going to be enough to sustain me. I’d walked there and I still had to walk back so I ordered the Fränkischer Bauernschinken, and it was lovely. I also moved onto their flagship Forstquell-Kupfer and knew I would stay longer than planned.

Forstquell-Kupfer & Bauernschinken

I’d come a long way and wasn’t sure I’d ever get back so I had another of both non-wheat beers to decide which I liked better and the winner was the Gold. I was too full to have the Apfelküchle but did try their Bierbrand as a consolation. It was a tough Biergarten to leave.They sadly do not bottle or I would have got a few. They do sell refillable liter bottles but they were pricey and the beer, while much better, is much more perishable.

Forst-Quell Bierbrand & lovely Biergarten

I didn’t think I’d get back to Forstquell so quickly but I managed to attend their annual Ash Wednesday Bockbieranstich in 2023. It was attended largely by family, close friends and some local political bigwigs including the mayors from Oettingen and Wassertrüdingen, who did the tapping. It ran a little late as we had  to wait for the owner’s Mother, who made a heart-warming entrance.

an truly eventful Ash Wednesday Bockanstich

The Bock was lovely as was a very tasty Biergulasch. I also finally had their excellent Apfelküchle. It’s big enough to share but good enough to finish yourself. More ammunition to get my wife to make the admittedly convoluted journey.

some incredible food to go with the great Bock

It’s not the easiest place to get without a car but it’s a beer worth the walk (or cycle, or taxi?), They dominated by Top 5 new-for-me beers in 2022. I guess this Bock will fare well in the 2023 awards. I hope to return again perhaps in autumn for their autumn beer, Forstquell Emmer.

Beers: Forstquell-Kupfer, Forstquell-Gold, Forst-Quell-Weiße all only tap.

Beer calendar:
Forstquell-Bock during Lent (Bockbieranstich on Ash Wednesday)
Forstquell-Emmer during Erntedankzeit (starts the first Sunday in October, similar to Thanksgiving)
Kirchweih in the middle of October
Full moon festivals each month

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