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Spalt - Germany

englishThe first impression hit my mind when our car arrived to Spalt was a familiar countryside. I saw large fields, farming areas when was about the harvest season. Running your eyes to further sides, we saw woods with standing straight to a mild-cloudy sky of a late summer afternoon. 

Spalt is about 1hour driving (on autobahn) from Nurnberg. The small town's proud of its main farm product - hops for beer. I was lucky as the time was the last chance of the season to smell hops before they would finish harvesting. We stopped in the middle of a field, stood next to a hop garden. The smell of farm, of dirt, of grass stroke my nose as a strong stir about my grandparents' houses. I missed Vietnam and my family! Johnny got a hop "flower" (actually it's a cluster of flowers). The light-green, geometric tube with hard short fir looked beautiful and appealing in my palm. Its smell reminded me of some light-sour herb, very relaxing for a hot summer, and actually very popular to make soup in Vietnamese cuisine. Without thinking, I put it into my mouth and tasted it... OMG it's unbelievably bitter !!!! Nothing like my imagination of a nice sour soup!!! YEAP, Johnny freak out and said no one here ever ate it!! :)) It's for beer, and it made the bitter taste of beer haha.

Even though beer I've tasted doesnt have that strong bitter taste, I could confirm their love and strong connection with bitter hop when I tried their Spalt beer in the dinner with Kathrin's family. Their beer reserves a fresh and bold taste of hops. That's why Johnny never looks at Heineken - which is my favourite if I have to drink beer :).  

In the following, I have some pictures of Spalt, my friends' houses. This is a place that for me, brings the most true German life to my understanding. If you get a chance to visit this country, plz take a look at the countrysides, small towns, and would be fantastic to have an authentic meal with a friend family. :)