• Vendome gourmet restaurant
    Vendome gourmet restaurant ©Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg
  • Lerbach gourmet restaurant
    Lerbach gourmet restaurant © Schlosshotel Lerbach
  • Restaurant Résidence
    Restaurant Résidence ©Hotel Résidence
  • Restaurant La Vision
    Restaurant La Vision ©(c) Wonge Bergmann
  • Restaurant Balthasar
    Restaurant Balthasar
  • Burgstuben-Residenz
    Burgstuben-Residenz ©(c) Burgstuben-Residenz

North Rhine-Westphalia

Westphalian ham, pumpernickel and Rhenish sauerbraten are specialities from North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany's largest federal state, whose culinary identity is very well defined. Blazing the gastronomic trail is a whole phalanx of outstanding chefs, led by Joachim Wissler and Nils Henkel from Bergisch-Gladbach, and, from Cologne, rising star Hans Horberth and the very individual Eric Frenchon. There are some real gems well worth discovering.
The Résidence – Essen's no. 1 restaurant

The Résidence enjoys an excellent reputation well beyond the city of Essen thanks to its restaurant, one of the most prestigious gastronomic destinations in Germany, where Berthold Bühler and his chefs de cuisine Erik Arnecke and Eric Werner impress with their light and creative gourmet food. The small adjoining hotel, in a quiet yet central location in the leafy Ruhr valley, makes a fabulous base for excursions in the area.

Vendôme gourmet restaurant at Althoff Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg

The Vendôme gourmet restaurant at the five-star grand hotel at Bensberg Palace in Bergisch Gladbach near Cologne is one of the best restaurants in Germany. It serves gourmet specialities by Michelin-starred chef Joachim Wissler, the foremost exponent of new German cuisine, who creates his own sublime blend of classic, creative and modern food. Der Feinschmecker magazine named Joachim Wissler chef of the year in 2005 and Germany's best chef in 2009.

La Vision gourmet restaurant at Hotel im Wasserturm

Diners can enjoy the art of haute cuisine 35 metres above Cologne at La Vision gourmet restaurant, on the eleventh floor of what was once Europe's tallest watertower. Few kitchens offer better views of the city, and executive chef Hans Horberth cooks youthful German gourmet cuisine in modern, contemporary interpretations. The panoramic roof terrace is an idyllic setting for an aperitif or digestif. Hotel im Wasserturm offers luxury five-star accommodation to an international clientele and is one of the most unusual hotels in Germany.

Burgstuben-Residenz in Heinsberg-Randerath

For 25 years, Rainer Hensen and his restaurant have been on a culinary journey of discovery. Hensen has developed his own business approach, which counters the trend for fast food and ready meals, in the village of Randerath and bases his creations on choice, preferably organic produce. Since 2002, Rainer Hensen has been one of Europe's few truly organic gourmet chefs.

Restaurant Balthasar in Paderborn

The philosophy at the Balthasar is to create delicious food that melts in the mouth. Elmar Simon is one of few chefs who really understands how diverse flavours work together and how to transform the finest regional ingredients into a harmonious dish. In addition to the Balthasar Classics menu, there are gourmet menus which change regularly. The tasteful contemporary decor, the warm colours and the sophisticated lighting make dining here a true aesthetic experience.

Lerbach gourmet restaurant at Althoff Schlosshotel Lerbach in Bergisch Gladbach

At Lerbach gourmet restaurant in the fairytale Althoff Schlosshotel Lerbach, which is surrounded by an extensive landscaped park, the emphasis is on nature and natural ingredients. The restaurant has been designed to reflect nature, creating an elegant yet relaxed setting for the innovative Pure Nature cuisine of Michelin-starred chef Nils Henkel, who was Gault Millau's chef of the year in 2009. Henkel's creations are accompanied by head sommelier Thomas Sommer's excellent selection of wines.

Le Moissonnier in Cologne

Restaurant Le Moissonnier retains all the charm and atmosphere of a French bistro, serving haute cuisine in a leisurely, unhurried atmosphere. Eric Menchon, whose diverse and complex dishes rank as some of the most exciting and most creative in Germany, has been cheffing here for over twenty years. Fittingly for this one-of-a-kind bistro and Cologne institution, the wine list brims with characterful fine wines from family vineyards.

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