This short jaunt to Germany has been so much fun, and I have to say one of the highlights was visiting the Stuttgart Markthalle, an historic market in the old part of Stuttgart. A vegetable market has been in this location since 1864, and the building was constructed between 1911 and 1914. The building was reconstructed after receiving heavy damage during World War II and the interior underwent extensive renovations after a 1993 fire. The building has been noted as a cultural monument since 1974.
Located near the Altes Schloss, or Old Castle, the 95-year-old market has many stalls of beautiful foods, including fresh produce, wines, cheeses, meats, and local specialties such as breads and sausages. You can find foods from Germany, France, Italy, Greece, Spain, Austria, and other countries. The Markthalle also houses a Merz & Benzing, an espresso bar, tapas bar, and a cafe serving traditional Swabian cuisine.
The selection of foods is spectacular. It was fun to wander the aisles and take in all the sights and smells of some of my favorite foods, such as these Italian hams. Each of the Italian delicatessens—there is more than one—had beautiful displays of prosciutto and other Italian meats.
The Spanish delicatessen had a corner display devoted to Serrano hams. Note the paella pans hanging above the counters.
I also found a couple spice shops with a wide array of spices from all over the world.
I was hungry for lunch before I got to the Markthalle, and after seeing all that delicious food I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to eat there. For lunch I noshed on a focaccia caprese from one of the Italian delis, grilled up panini style, while I sat outdoors in the sunshine and watched the people come and go or stop to eat at one of the cafes outside the Markthalle. I also found one of our favorite German breads, laugenbrötchen (pretzel rolls), at one of the bakeries and brought a few back to the hotel for us to share, then immediately set off to figure out how to make them at home.
I had such a good time at the Markthalle and highly recommend it for anyone visiting Stuttgart, especially if you have a passion for good food and great markets.
[I purchased items myself and received no compensation of any kind for writing this article.]
Location: Dorotheenstraße 4, 70173 Stuttgart
Getting there: Via S-Bahn, all lines (S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S6). Get off at Stadtmitte, one stop away from the Hauptbahnhoff (main train station). Follow the signs to Königstraße, turning left, then turn right on Stiftstraße, left on Kirchstraße, and right on Dorotheenstraße. The market is on the southwest corner of the Altes Schloss (Old Castle), now the Würrtemberg State Museum.
Hours: Monday – Friday, 7 am to 6:30 pm; Saturday 7 am to 4 pm
Website: http://www.maerkte-stuttgart.de/markthalle (in German)