Reader mail: hiking, golf, Germany, supper clubs

currywurst-museumReaders, it’s time to lighten the mailbag. Here is a selection of your most recent notes and questions.

Jim and Monica O’Brien of Madison asked for ideas about what to do in Two Rivers. Three unexpected pleasures in this area are:

Bernard Schwartz House, a Frank Lloyd Wright design that is based on his 1938 Life magazine commission to create a “dream house” that a middle-class family could afford. Occasional tours are possible, and the building is available for overnight stays. theschwartzhouse.com, 612-840-7507

Lighthouse Inn, on the Lake Michigan shore, is reasonably priced and family owned. In the hotel restaurant are beautiful lake views, and a 5.5-mile, paved recreational trail to Manitowoc is right outside the door. Bicycle rentals available. lhinn.com, 920-793-4524

Susie Q Fish Market, a four-generation business is small but the real deal if you like smoked fish. susieqfishmarket.com, 920-794-8434

Two other unique attractions will be column topics this winter, so stay tuned.

Ronnie Hess of Madison asked me to give a friend suggestions to get better acquainted with the food of Berlin and Frankfurt. My “Eat Smart in Germany” culinary travel guide covers this type of thing, and research for the book was enriched by an Eat the World food tour in Berlin. These informative walking and tasting tours also are offered in 18 other German cities. eat-the-world.com

A must-see destination in Berlin is the Currywurst Museum (currywurstmuseum.com) because the sausage chunks that swim in curry-spiked ketchup are a much-revered street food.

In Frankfurt, I had the excellent luck of being matched with tour guide Mikael Horstmann (herr-mika.com). He speaks excellent English and is an uber-foodie who certainly knows his way around the city’s Sachsenhausen (apple wine) district and has the inside scoop on the city’s best pop-up meals, cooked by cutting-edge chefs.

“I have been trying to save some 1880s to 1901 buildings in Glen Haven (Grant County), on the Mississippi,” writes Greg Sedbrook, who seeks correspondence with other eager learners who live in rural areas. He says his own eclectic background includes creativity studies, future studies, anthropology, medical electronics, locomotive repair and Bavarian dance.

“I’d like to do something like a restoration project with a TED.com summer camp,” he says. “I’m open to any sorts of learning-related ideas or visits. I also have a lot of great material on learning from other cultures.” Contact him at sedbrookgr@yahoo.com.

Some of you appreciate our occasional “Take Ten” approach to close-to-home travel and share other favorites.

“Just read your article on walking/hiking trails in Wisconsin – beautiful,” says Mary Craig of Manawa, who enjoys a trail along the Little Wolf River, built and maintained by volunteers in this Waupaca County city.

“It is less than a mile long but has boardwalks and five bridges – an arched bridge, lattice bridge, covered bridge, log bridge and crooked bridge,” she writes, adding that “a newly constructed trail along County B in Manawa leads you to the Pat Wade Memorial Trail, which wanders through a woods” and is named after a Navy officer who died in 2007 during service in Iraq.

The entire trail through Manawa is used the first weekend of July for The Stampede, an annual run of 5 and 10 kilometers.

“Green Bay has two fabulous farmers markets: one on Saturday mornings and one on Wednesday evenings,” writes Therese Rulfedt of Green Bay. “I am disappointed that you didn’t mention either one. I have been to several that you did mention, and our farmers market is as good or better.”

“You must try Rock River Country Club in Waupun,” writes Eugene Lambert of Waupun. The front nine links-style course opened in 2004, and the back nine parks-style course (“100s of trees”) opened in 1927, he says. “Two very distinct nines in one” semi-private course. golfrrcc.com, 920-324-2621

“I was excited to see the Cassville ferry article, but you didn’t mention the neatest feature of the ferry: how it turns around,” writes Bill Mullen of Appleton. “The one time I got to use it, I about fell over when it started turning around. It is so cool! I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Bill is referring to the ferry’s locking mechanism, which allows the tugboat part of it to swing out 180 degrees, then connect to the barge full of vehicles and smoothly cross the river. The car ferry’s schedule resumes May 1. cassville.org, 608-725-5180

Anne Glasner of Appleton writes about why she is a supper club fan: “These are restaurants with diverse menus and a place where you can carry on a conversation. A diner rarely is hustled out for the next seating at a supper club. The servers are apt to be very experienced at what they do, and they recognize the return diners frequently. Supper clubs don’t require suits and ties or memberships. Just a real appreciative ‘eating out’ experience.”

With that, I can’t resist updating you about what is next for my Wisconsin Supper Club Cookbook signings. In the lineup:

Red Mill Supper Club, 1222 Hwy. HH, Stevens Point, 5-7 p.m. Nov. 7. Buy a cookbook and get a $10 Red Mill gift certificate to use on a subsequent visit. redmillsupperclub.com, 715-341-7714

Five O’Clock Steakhouse, 2416 W. State St., Milwaukee, 5-8 p.m. Nov. 13. Filmmaker Holly De Ruyter will show her “Old Fashioned: The Story of the Wisconsin Supper Club” documentary; $10 admission includes complimentary appetizers, 5:30-6:30 p.m. fiveoclocksteakhouse.com, 414-342-3553

Barnes and Noble, 7433 Mineral Point St., Madison, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 19. Barnesandnoble.com, 608-827-0809

Look for updates at facebook.com/supperclubcookbook.