Goethe also enjoyed Liechtenstein hospitality. In the year 1788 on his return from his famous Italian Tour he stayed the night from 1 to 2 June in Liechtenstein's capital Vaduz. Unfortunately, it is not known what the great poet ordered to eat and drink in the Principality. Nevertheless, the following lines provide a little insight into the pleasures that are cultivated today in Liechtenstein.
Wine-growing regions are the preferred stomping grounds of gourmets. As a rule, where fine wines grow, cuisine also tends to be excellent. This means the small country between the Rhine and Rätikon is a highly promising region for those in search of gourmet delights, for over 100 vintners dedicate themselves to the cultivation of the noble vine. In the climatically blessed Rhine Valley, the prevailing Föhn winds help excellent wines to ripen on the southern slopes of the mountains.
The fact that Liechtenstein has not yet become greatly known amongst connoisseurs as a wine country may have something to do with the fact that Liechtensteiners prefer to drink their good wines themselves. This means one has to visit the country in person in order to be rewarded with delicious discoveries. The first port of call for guests will certainly be the Princely Wine Cellars in Vaduz, where oenological rarities can be tasted and purchased at the Vinothek. There are also many other small vineyards, however from Eschnerberg through Schaan, Vaduz and Triesen to Gutenberg castle in Balzers that stock fine wines for visitors and open their doors for tasting.
Liechtenstein does not merely have a culture of exquisite wines, though. The Principality also has nothing to hide from its "big" neighbours when it comes to typical local beers.
The sound foundations for fine wines are established by the Alemannic-bucolic culinary traditions, which are nevertheless always open to interesting outside influences. For this reason the culinary spectrum extends from gourmet menus in restaurants adorned with stars and toques, to traditional dishes in "rustic taverns" and Alpine lodges. Venerable Liechtenstein specialities include traditional Käsknöpfle (a type cheese gnocchi) with apple purée, dishes comprising local-style polenta, brawn and slowly matured sour cheese. Is there a better way to get to know a country with all senses?
In addition to the simple lodgings that still exist for wanderers i.e. the three remote mountain lodges there is also a wide variety of accommodation available in Liechtenstein. Luxury hotels, small but charming mid-range hotels or family-run hotels all have one thing in common: hospitality is writ large at each and every one. The varied accommodation available is rounded off with boarding houses, mountain lodges, a youth hostel and a camping site. It can only be conjectured how the traveller Goethe would choose today. At any rate, with this huge range of options he would have been spoilt for choice.