Finding food in Bozi Dar!

Published: March 26th 2013
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Bozi Dar mapBozi Dar mapBozi Dar map

Every street named Bozi Dar!
Bozi Dar a small town almost straddling the old Czech /East German border is not known for its culinary specialities. Family friendly skiing, inexpensive lodging, cheap beer and a somewhat more Bohemian experience shall we say, are amongst its most endearing qualities.

Our late arrival at the old Zeleny Dum or Green Hotel narrowed our choices to a gigantic pork hock with dumplings or for the vegetarians, fried cheese. This was clearly not going to be a low cholesterol holiday!

Neither was it going to be a late night hot spot as we were thrown out of both dining rooms at 10pm in order for the staff to set the tables for breakfast. We sheepishly trooped across the lobby sadly devoid of skis and sat and giggled in our room making plans.

Unseasonal warm and rainy weather made skiing impossible. The respectable New Year snowfall was melting spectacularly and rivers like spring melt raced under the banks of scraped snow at the side of the roads.

We trod carefully through the sheets of water checking out our surroundings. Hardly an auspicious beginning and a town-wide power failure sent us
Cakes and wafers galoreCakes and wafers galoreCakes and wafers galore

Walking to Jachymov has its benefits!
in search of a dry cafe serving coffee or gluhwein. The candles were lit, the ambiance was great just no coffee or gluhwein to be had. We glimpsed no flash ski shops, no souvenir shops stuffed with trinkets we didn't need.

At the far end of town the Hotel Praha succumbed to Rose's charms, to her sweet smile and winning ways and promised large glasses of gluhwein, powercut or not. After the second one we really didn't mind what soup they were serving but as the power returned we ate the reasonable noodle soup and chatted about where we would go to eat dinner. I must add none of our number were French although we did a lot of discussing the next meal whilst eating the present one!

The Excalibur with its armour-studded walls bordered with crossed swords was our chosen destination. The skinny waiter frowned in deep concentration as he dredged up English words from his memory. We had called in earlier to check the menu but this evening there had been no welcoming smile of recognition. Czechs must have graduated from the Russian school of hospitality. Finally towards the end of the meal a smile hovers on his twitching lips and breaks into a definite grin.

Once more our lovely Lady Harvey had again charmed the pants off a difficult customer.

In the afternoon Rolf from the ski hire shop had hugged her tightly, his impressive moustaches bristling with intent as he calls her his 'schutzi-putzi,' posing for a photo.

Back under the helmets and breastplates we have consumed two bottles of wine, three trout, two stuffed pork pockets, one pork steak, six hors d'oeuvres, four desserts, after dinner aids to digestion which all came to the grand total of 1800 Czech Koruna (AUS $89 approx.).

After a day trip to Karlovy Vary (next post) we were blown into the doorway of the Restaurant Daro Pension. Choices were limited and faced with a plateful of dumplings, Ken swallowed hard. 'Looks just like that German guy in the sauna today,' he grimaced, 'just not so hairy!'

The rest of us tucked into our goulash and the dubious dumplings. We glanced up as the slim, surprisingly smiley waitress came abruptly up to our table and wondered if we needed a drink. We declined. 'Letzte Orden,' she snapped. We looked up incredulously at the clock. 9.20 pm. Ten minutes later, two tables remained, the hoover came out and the short, spiky-haired waitress was vacuuming around the other group's table.

'She'll ask him to lift his legs up soon,' Ken joked. She did!

We picked up our ski jackets, now warm and dry from where they were hanging on a peg under the motorcross shield. Lime green, cobalt blue, teal and powder blue they looked like paints ready mixed in a palette. We laughed as the door was firmly shut behind us.

It was time for a home-cooked meal after the long walk to Oberwiesenthal. We tucked into a prawn and red pepper tagliatelle washed down with a few bottles of $2.50 white wine purchased from the small supermarket on the main Bozi Dar road (all roads being called Bozi Dar). It was not such a tragedy then when a forgotten bottle in the freezer cabinet exploded with a bang at midnight making us think a meteor had fallen from the sky!

We sample the Ratskeller the next night for soup and more goulash and heavy dumplings. We part with 90 koruna each (about AU$4.35) and want to stay for more gluhwein. However the thick smell of cigarette smoke as locals gather in the bar drives us out to find another. The keller under the Praha hotel came to our rescue and we chatted happily to the waiter who had designs on work in Karlovy Vary and then further afield in Praha.

A wintery walk into Jachymov along the trail called Jachymov's Hell found us in need of sustenance and a simple corner cafe on the roundabout supplied us with a cornucopia of delights. Torte, gluhwein, hot fruit drinks, wafers (chilli and chocolate, cherry, raspberry) and any number of ices and boxed chocolates. Suitably fortified we decided on a return trip to Excalibur for dinner. Sometimes you just can't get enough of swords and breastplates!

Perhaps you should never try to repeat an experience. Maybe it was a different chef on duty but the food was not quite up to the same standard as before. The crispy baked Forellen (trout) were still the highlight. Discussing where we were to go after, marvelling at the thickly falling snow, the waiter deftly locked the door behind us.

Additional photos below
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Dining amidst swords and shieldsDining amidst swords and shields
Dining amidst swords and shields

The Excalibur restaurant

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