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Germany: Food Allergies.

Travel Forums Europe Germany: Food Allergies.

1. Posted by urbandog (Budding Member 8 posts) 9y

As you can see from my last post - I'll be in Germany from the 27th through the 4th, and I've been researching way to express my food allergies in German. But I'd like to have a native speakers help, if possible.

I currently live in NYC, and have had a few food scares, and I'd like to avoid any abroad if at all possible.

I'm allergic to seafood (most fish as well) and tomatos. This is including tomato paste, fish oil, fish that eat shell fish (ie: tuna) and well you get the point...

I'm also traveling with a vegiarian (Vegetarisch... would I have them say, Ich bin Vegitarisch. or should one press further about chicken/beef broth etc).

When out I normally say no sea-food and no tomato. But how are the German people w. these requests? I get a lot of attudite where I live, when I have to make alterations to the menu. Further, I've had many experiences where a tomato is placed on something then removed and served to me. How can I stress this as a, "I will need to be hospitalized..." type of food allergy?

My research has found these are the key phrases I should know:

Allergisch gegen ... (tomate).
Kontaktallergie zum ....
Tomateallergie
Meeresfruchteallergie
Ol -- oil
Fisch Ol (would that be fish oil?)
Auster - oyster

I'll most likely be eating a lot of wurst and burgers while abroad, I'm just concerned w. the marinate and gravy.

Thanks in advance.

2. Posted by Winkekatze (Full Member 41 posts) 9y

Hello,

you shouldn't have problems in Germany concerning alterations to the menu as long you just stay nice and polite, especially when you get the feeling people didnt' get you right (what could likely happen in the villages in the Black Forest ...).

I'm quite sure the German idioms you listed will do it - people should know what "Kontaktallergie" means, maybe you could add something like "... aus medizinischen Gruenden darf ich keine Tomaten essen ..." (for medical reasons I cannot eat tomatoes) - just to stress that it's really serious.

Usually there is not so much seafood in Germany, so avoiding fish oil & co. is not a big deal. Maybe try a local dish of southern Germany (in the Black Forest), for example "Spaetzle" (kind of noodles) with beef ("Rindsrouladen" or "Rinderrouladen")- mmmh! :-)

Vegetarians won't have a problem, there are lot of vegetarians in Germany too and most restaurants offer veg. food. In German you would say: "Ich bin Vegetarier".

Hope you'll enjoy your stay in Germany!

Filika - best regards,

Silke

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[ Edit: sorry, no website promos please. ]

3. Posted by pfeiffer (Full Member 211 posts) 9y

Quoting Winkekatze

you shouldn't have problems in Germany concerning alterations to the menu as long you just stay nice and polite, especially when you get the feeling people didnt' get you right (what could likely happen in the villages in the Black Forest ...)

I don't quite agree with this assessment. Unless you are an advanced speaker of German, the language alone will cause problems and misunderstandings; if eating a lettuce leaf that once had a tomato slice sitting on it will send you to the hospital, then you should be preparing your own food.

In many places, "vegetarian" means simply no large chunks of meat in the dish and nothing more. Whether a meat-based broth, for example, was used in the preparation, is anyone's guess. In better, i.e., more expensive, hotels, where the staff are used to dealing with complicated requests, this will likely be less a problem.

I do agree that seafood will also be less problematic. But Lebensmittel is not expensive here; when you get tired of Wurst why not simply book guest apartments, etc., where you can cook your own, and then take something with when you go sightseeing?

-Kevin
--
Kevin Pfeiffer

[ Edit: Edited on Dec 12, 2006, at 1:31 AM by pfeiffer ]

4. Posted by urbandog (Budding Member 8 posts) 9y

Winkekatze & Pfeiffer, Thank you!

I agree, I normally do prepair my own food - but I figure there will be a few nights where I'll want to dine out. My questions are most for those nights. And yes, on a regular I am polite when I request; but even explaing to those where I live now, mistakes are made.

I don't see myself tiring of Wurst, not in the first three/four days or so (I'm use to sticking to a three plate diet/ "safe" foods while out - and more elaborate dishes while I am at home). The gravy that is used, are you familiar if many dishes call for tomato paste, as some gravys do in The States? Or, are they mainly onion and beef based?

Thank you both for your advice.

Cheers,
Marie

5. Posted by Winkekatze (Full Member 41 posts) 9y

Hallo Marie,

the use of tomatoes in the gravy is not very common in Germany, as you already suggested it is usually onions & meat based.

Silke