So when I discovered they had a Christmas market, just like the rest of Germany, I knew we had to visit. Much like the town itself, its Weihnachtsmarkt is small, modest and lacks the showiness of larger cities, but that is its charm. Rather than the massive stalls, overflowing with meter-long gummi ropes and cotton candy machines, there is a little hard candy stand that I make sure to find every year to buy an assortment of flavors. Instead of loud and colorful kids' carnival monstrosities, there is a horse-drawn carriage you can ride through town. Food options stay more traditional, with Wurst and Flammkuchen, with a few eateries on the main block opening their patios to serve soups and a couple of plates centered around ubiquitous German meats and cheeses. We did make an amazing food discovery last year in the form of apple beignets - apple rings dipped in batter, fried, and dusted with cinnamon sugar - which were sadly absent this year. Here's hoping they return in the years to come...
Charm aside, one of the main reasons we made the hour-plus trek down for this particular market was the Portugieser Glühwein. While I'm not entirely sure what is different about this hot mulled wine, it is the perfect combination of not too sweet and not too spicy, not to mention it's served in the prettiest little rustic market mugs. Whether it's for the wine, the ancient wall or even for an excursion outside of the Christmas season, Freinsheim will remain one of my favorite little German towns.
Historische Altstadt, von Tor zu Tor
Friday evenings and weekends, from late November to late December