The 10th Culinary St. Jacobs Way began on July 8 under the overall direction of Eckart Witzigmann in this anniversary year. Visitors in high spirits experienced this year’s star chefs Heinz Winkler, Harald Wohlfahrt, Sven Wassmer, Michael Wignall and also Arabelle Meirlaen while hiking to their sponsor’s huts and as they were show-cooking their special “hut-creations.” Their down-home dishes creatively interpreted from regional ingredients are now available on their particular hut menus.
Delightful anniversary kick-off: Five-star chefs, five delightful routes to five mountain huts in Paznaun and five hut dishes creatively interpreted by these master chefs – On July 8, 2018 the “Chef of the Century,” Eckart Witzigmann opened the 10th Culinary St. Jacobs Way. The concept: For one entire summer, five-star chefs take over the direction of each mountain hut and using regional specialties create a novel but down-home dish that will appear throughout the summer on the menus of the particular huts. At the kick-off on July 8, 2018, Heinz Winkler, Harald Wohlfahrt, Sven Wassmer, Michael Wignall and Arabelle Meirlaen hiked together with their guests along their culinary-delight routes to their sponsor’s huts. During the show-cooking these highly renowned chefs presented their recipes that would appear on the particular hut menus, beginning immediately and lasting until the end of the 2018 summer season. If you want to try all the dishes at one location: On August 19 all creations by these five-star chefs will be presented once again at the Culinary St. Jacobs Way summer festival at the Ascher hut. The recipes will be handed out at the participating huts or can be called up online at: https://www.ischgl.com/en/events/summer-highlights/culinary-st-jacobs-way.
Coordination of these top chefs and of their recipes will also be handled in 2018 by the Tyrolean Martin Sieberer. With three toques and 18 points, Sieberer and his Paznaunerstube in the Hotel Trofana Royal is himself a multi-awarded chef and is among the best in Austria.
Friedrichshafener Hut: Heinz Winkler
“Eating should be liberating, and not a burden,” is the motto of one of the world’s best chefs. Top-star chef Heinz Winkler has been awarded three stars in the Michelin Guide a total of 21 times throughout his career. The Cuisine Vitale of this most-distinguished chef in Germany is based on proven recipes, many fresh herbs and is known for combining refinement with down-to-earth cooking. Since 1991 Winkler has been the owner and head chef at the *****Hotel Residenz Heinz Winkler in Aschau in Chiemgau. For his service in boosting the reputation of German gastronomy abroad, he was awarded the Federal Service Cross in 2001. His dish for the Friedrichshafener hut: “Kaiserschmarren served in a pan with apple sauce, cranberry jam, plum and vanilla”.
Heiderberger hut: Harald Wohlfahrt
Harald Wohlfahrt’s strongest trademark is to meet the high expectations of gourmets from the entire world with the greatest culinary quality. Another trademark are the three Michelin stars, awarded 25 times consecutively to distinguish him as head chef in the restaurant Schwarzwaldstube in the Hotel Traube Tonbach in Baiersbronn-Tonbach from 1992 until it was handed off in 2017 – the only one in all Germany. Three Michelin stars for 25 years is the longest continuous award of this distinction in Germany. In 2004 he was also presented with the Federal Service Cross. In 2005 he was honored “for promoting the high culinary culture in Germany and for exceptional service” with the l’Art de Vivre prize; until that time only Eckart Witzigmann and Martin Öxle had been so honored. His dish for the Heiderberger hut: “Ricotta ravioli with pistousauce and bell pepper confit”.
Jamtal hut: Sven Wassmer
Sven Wassmer’s secret to success: “I cook what grows naturally in Vals.” This young man from Fricktal has been preparing the new Swiss kitchen since 2015. The Alpine chef has based his seasonal recipe on a knowledge of the riches of the region, using spices with great precision from the here and now. He emphasizes versatility and maximum quality to inspire both experts and afficionados. For his dishes, Wassmer collects wild fruits, herbs and mushrooms from the steep slopes of the Bündner mountains; in nearby Cumbel he gets saibling from the glacial water and his potatoes are gown in the Albulatal. The edible treasures of the region he combines with the best ingredients from around the world for his creations. His dish for the Jamtal hut: “Fried fillet of char with a sorrel cream, pota-toes and salad”.
Almstüberl: Michael Wignall
Michael Wignall surprises his demanding guests with his dishes having a harmonic interplay of new, unusual ingredient combinations and taste directions. In his cooking this Englishman relys on the sum of his culinary inspirations and experiences gained on his travels and courageously combines them with local British products. With an eye for the smallest detail and his propensity for absolute perfection, this extreme-sports enthusiast gets the maximum from a combination of taste, presentation and structure of ingredients. Since 1993 Michael Wignall has been awarded Michelin stars in every kitchen under his management, for his unconventional handling of the gourmet kitchen. His switch from The Latymer restaurant to Gidleigh Park in Chagford was rewarded with two Michelin stars in 2016. In 2017 he was awarded five rosettes in mid-year for his performance in the kitchen - a unique distinction in the 61-year history of English AA-distinctions. His dish for the Almstüberl: “Almstüberl meatloaf with vegetable hash and beetroot kimchi”.
Ascher hut: Arabelle Meirlaen
“Cooking is not a discipline where rules and laws prevail, every person has a distinctive style. This is a feminine kitchen, a combination of my intuition and my creativity, generated by a symbiosis of nature and my spontaneous selections of the moment,” relates Arabelle Meirlaen. She pampers her guests in her Restaurant Arabelle Meirlaen in Marchin, Belgium, with her tasty, amusing, sometimes even unconventional cooking. She skillfully mixes new and traditional culinary techniques to create new taste sensations. Her sources of inspiration are remembrances of childhood and intuition, which make her kitchen feminine, light, poetic and full of emotion. Her cooking is oriented towards a natural kitchen. Her catchword: “Vitality”. And to get the best ingredients for this, she scouts the world of wild plants, together with an herbal specialist, but without losing sight of local products, vegetables and rare garden herbs. Her success has been distinguished by Gault&Millau as chef of the year 2014 and her restaurant currently has earned one Michelin star and 18 Gault&Millau points. Her dish for the Ascher hut: “Lentil risotto with cornfed chicken and herbs”.
“Culinary St. Jacobs Way” as an Afficionado Hiking Packet
During the mountain summer in Paznaun guests can enjoy individually all five dishes from July 8 until the end of summer along the delightful route of the Culinary St. Jacobs Way. Five nights in Paznaun in a select category, plus all services of the Silvretta Card all inclusive can be had for as little as 153 euros per person, including breakfast. Online-booking: www.paznaun-ischgl.com.
Holiday Saving Tip: Silvretta Card all inclusive
Hikers and mountain bikers will profit in Paznaun with the visitor’s “Silvretta Card all inclusive,” even with only a one-night stay. With the no-fee use of the cable car and chair lifts throughout Paznaun, all mountain bike trails, hiking trails and alpine pastures are easily accessible. And if you need a cool-down after the adventure, use of the outdoor and indoor pools in Ischgl and Galtür, and of the Badesee is also at no cost. Also included at no fee: all bus routes in Paznaun and toll along the famed Silvretta High Alpine Road. All Info at: https://www.ischgl.com/en/active/cycling-hiking/silvretta-card-all-inclusive.
All information about the cooking and tours is found https://www.ischgl.com/en/events/summer-highlights/culinary-st-jacobs-way oder www.paznaun-ischgl.com.