Bavarian Bistro

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Leavenworth is a small Bavarian town of 2,000 that brings in some two million annual visitors. It’s not hard to see why. Everywhere you look are charming details that make you think you’re in the Alps, not Leavenworth, Washington.

At Bavarian Bistro, you can enjoy the best of both: locally sourced Washington ingredients and Old World specialties along with Bavarian music to set the mood.

After a lovely 10-minute wait sitting in the sun on one of the many benches nearby, we’re offered a number that corresponds to our outdoor picnic table, then instructed to head upstairs to order. We oblige, and enter what likely was once a very rowdy indoor space with charming wood booths, photographs of Bavaria on the walls, and a lively bar. 

It’s at the bar where we order food along with a 16-ounce Dunkel and 32-ounce pFriem pilsner. Then we head down the back and out to our table, which provides a prime vista for people- and dog-watching. 

The Bavarian sampler is a favorite, featuring three half-sausages: bratwurst (traditional, pork), knackwurst (a little more seasoned, northern Germany style) and weisswurst (traditional Bavarian, with veal and pork back bacon). It comes with a trio of mustards: one that’s sweeter, one speckled with Dijon, and one that’s smooth with a spicy hint of horseradish. Nestled next to the links are piles of apple cider-y sauerkraut and pickled onions. They’re excellent with the wursts, each of which provides a good satisfying snap.

Jaeger schnitzel is a pork cutlet pounded then pan-fried, topped with a stick-to-your-ribs mushroom gravy and served with chewy spaetzle, more gravy, and red cabbage (“rotkhol”). It’s tasty, satisfying, and ample in size. The red cabbage has the same apple cider tinge as the sauerkraut, adding a touch of sweetness to the schnitzel. 

Cool cheese dip, or “obatzda,” is made with whipped Camembert, butter, paprika, and German beer, and served with cold pretzel bites, celery, carrots, and rye bread. To me, there’s something missing. Maybe it’s salt? Or perhaps I am just more accustomed to warm cheese dip and should avoid obatzda the next time I’m in Bavaria … or Leavenworth, Washington.

What To Eat

Obatzda

DISH
Jaeger Schnitzel Special

DISH
The Bavarian Sampler

DISH

Bavarian Bistro Recipes

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