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Markgräfler Küche im Hotel Krone

The historic Gasthaus Krone remains in the foreground, while the new building of exposed concrete, steel and glass, designed by architect Osman Askari, who formerly worked for Herzog & de Meuron, remains in the background. This distribution of roles was important to hotel manager Sonja Hechler / © Photo: Georg Berg

The historic Gasthaus Krone remains in the foreground, while the new building of exposed concrete, steel and glass, designed by architect Osman Askari, who formerly worked for Herzog & de Meuron, remains in the background. This distribution of roles was important to hotel manager Sonja Hechler / © Photo: Georg Berg

Dialect is a beautiful word that can be played with excellently. The word tempts culinary and artistic associations. Peter Prüfer, chef at the Hotel Krone restaurant, together with hostess Sonja Hechler, is focusing on a new type of Markgräfler cuisine. The proximity to the region is also noticeable onomatopoeically. Because on the menu the courts carry names in dialect. The service staff is trained and always provides the High German translation at the table.

“Bunte Blüeämechol,” the colorful cauliflower is accompanied by navette, a type of radish, as well as versus vinaigrette and frisée / © Photo: Georg Berg

The Bunte Blüeämechol is factually supplemented by three explanatory components each and comes from the section From the Garden. Here the guest will find vegetarian and vegan dishes. Whether celery ‘us em Ofe or Gemues & Wald, they are all examples of the restaurant’s new unique selling point. Because vegan cuisine, composed as a 5-course menu, is hard to find at this level in the region.

Service with mouth guard between distance objects by Samuel Treidl / © Photo: Georg Berg

Corona – Closing is not an option

The virus in the form of a corona initially also knocked the Hotel Krone off its feet. The enforced standstill became a creative phase that opened up scope for new concepts. Thus, in the early phase of the pandemic, the range of purely vegetable dishes was developed. In addition, virtually overnight, the concept for a drive-in was born. The takeaway also saw new audiences literally drive by. From young people who couldn’t cook to people who didn’t want to shop. The drive-in at Hotel Krone became a social meeting point. The kitchen team provided 80 to 100 meals in compostable dishes. The campaign attracted new guests who continued to visit the restaurant after the reopening.

Bike rental at Hotel Krone: sketch of a strategically perfect location: “Pick a Bike” at Hotel Krone and in five minutes you’re at the Vitra Campus, in eight minutes at the Fondation Beyeler in Switzerland, and in 25 minutes even in the middle of Basel’s marketplace. Our first destination, quite design-oriented, the Vitra Campus / © Photo: Georg Berg

Hotel Krone – surrounded by art and design

Hotel Krone has the perfect location between Basel, the Fondation Beyeler in Riehen with often top-class exhibitions and the Vitra Campus in Weil. Hotel manager Sonja Hechler has turned her parents’ former inn into a boutique hotel furnished with design classics. Artists and art patrons like to stay here, art hangs on the walls, and the hotel regularly initiates its own art events. In 2020, Sonja Hechler had planned a major project for ART Basel with artist Samuel Treindl. But like so many things, the world’s largest art fair has been canceled this year.

Art in times of Corona. The artist Samuel Treindl designed a spit shield. Protection and adornment at the same time for the terrace at the Krone Restaurant / © Photo: Georg Berg

Samuel Treindl offered to do something despite the cancellation of the fair. Since the Krone team had already dealt with the topic of Corona and how to get through the pandemic for a restaurant and hotel business on various levels, Sonja Hechler came up with the very pragmatic idea of an artistic implementation of spittle protection walls. The neon-colored installations have been on the large terrace of the new building since June 2019 and are eye-catcher and spacer in one.

From the garden – Connected to the region

Since mid-2019, Peter Prüfer has been head chef at the Krone restaurant and has put together a crisp relaunch. The plant-based aspect is important to him. Peter Prüfer has a plant-based diet himself and enriches the kitchen with his vegan and vegetarian dishes. Several times a year, the young kitchen team creates seasonal culinary series.

Chef Peter Prüfer in conversation with Angela Berg / © Photo: Georg Berg

Despite his own diet, Prüfer is not dogmatic-vegan, he tries everything that is created in his kitchen. As a professional, he also tastes the sauces of the meat dishes and roasts the lamb fillet. Prüfer avoids meat from factory farms and sea fish. Crayfish instead of lobster, so to speak.

Kaiserstühler Rane – caraway pastry, sour cream and wild herbs / © Photo: Georg Berg

Vegan dishes are under his heading From the Garden. The vegetables come from the region, are delivered unpackaged and in organic quality. He raves about the agriculture around the Kaiserstuhl region with its excellent supply of fruits and vegetables. This area is a land of milk and honey for him. Tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet potatoes, root vegetables and cabbages grow here and Prüfer uses them in his cooking.

Peter Prüfer with team at the pass of the summer kitchen, which serves guests on the terrace / © Photo: Georg Berg

New Markgräfler cuisine

The cuisine of the region with traditional dishes of meat and fish are also on the menu under the heading Markgräfler menu crown. Here, Peter Prüfer reinterprets traditional dishes and also gives space to the by-products of an animal. For example, two kinds of calf’s head are offered, or sweetbreads are transformed into a crispy praline. The wine accompaniment at Restaurant Krone is also linked to the region. The Schneider winery from the immediate neighborhood is always on the restaurant’s menu. They are just as happy to present young, innovative vintners from the Markgräfler Land or wines from the nearby Kaiserstuhl.

Two ways from the calf’s head: Chalb’s head lean & baked with parsnip velouté and chervil / © Photo: Georg Berg
Fillet of “Wiße Waller” with young carrots, crayfish broth and potato straw / © Photo: Georg Berg
Veal praline – sweetbreads deep-fried and with summer truffle / © Photo: Georg Berg

From drive-in to food truck

The idea of a drive-in, born out of Corona’s need, drew a new idea from its success. Since September 2020, the Krone restaurant has been operating its own food truck and will also be on the road in the region. In addition to Markgräfler cuisine in a new ART, Sonja Hechler offers a culinary journey to Puglia in Restaurant La Cucina in neighboring Binzen. Guests of the Hotel Krone can book culinary packages with multi-course menus in both restaurants. The host at Hotel Mühle with its La Cecina restaurant is Fabio Elia, who was inspired by his grandmother’s Apulian dishes to create the restaurant’s southern Italian focus.

Concentration at the pass: Sonja Hechler and Fabio Elia in the restaurant La Cucina in Binzen / © Photo: Georg Berg

Hotel Krone – Harmonious triad of culture, design and wine
The Hotel Mühle brings Apulian cuisine to Binzen
On the road in Basel – A self-guided food tour and a visit to the Fondation Beyeler
Basel, the city on the Rhine. It served as a refuge for idiosyncratic thinkers

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The cost of half board was not charged by the hotel

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