Lucerne : Eating and drinking
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Luzern has a fine range of eating and drinking venues covering all budgets – the crowded, generic places that are in plain view tend to be least interesting, but a small amount of backstreet searching will turn up plenty of more rewarding places.

Local specialities to keep an eye out for are led by the celebrated Luzerner Kügelipastete – many Old Town restaurants spell it out in dialect along the lines of Lozärner Chögalipaschtetli, also often prefixed by ächti (authentic). This heartwarming, stomach-lining dish is a glorified vol-au-vent, a large puff-pastry shell filled with a super-rich concoction of diced veal and mushrooms in a creamy sauce – veggie versions omitting the veal aren’t hard to find. Otherwise, fish is the thing, in endless varieties: you’ll see Forellen (trout), Egli (perch), Felchen (a kind of white fish) and Hecht (pike) on most menus, virtually all of it plucked fresh from the lake – as witnessed by the stalls groaning with finny gogglers in the twice-weekly Old Town markets.

Wash it all down either with a Kaffee fertig, a coffee laced with Schnapps, or a Kafi Luz, traditionally seen in Canton Luzern outside the city but nowadays easy to find in the Old Town cafés. The right way to make one is to put a five-franc coin in a vase-shaped glass, pour hot coffee in until you can’t see the coin, then add Schnapps until the coin becomes visible again. Stir in two large spoons of sugar, and you have the perfect farmers’ pick-me-up.

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