Two more personal recommendations from Martina: indulge in oysters and cava at the quayside market or try the Town Musicians platter from the market on Domshof square. Bremen is credited with inventing the rollo, a type of falafel wrap. Ingrid reports on her ultimate rollo. Burgers might not originate from Bremen, but they certainly are all the rage here. For the best burgers, try Rock & Wurst, the Burgermeister in the Radisson or Sail City Bremerhaven, where you can try water buffalo burgers made from locally sourced meat.
In the winter months, it's all about glühwein and the kohlfahrt, or 'kale tour'. At the Christmas market and the Schlachte-Zauber, glühwein, what we Germans call mulled wine, is a must. For the best vineyard-sourced glühwein, try the Ratskeller stalls near the Bremen Town Musicians and on Teerhofbrücke bridge. Alternatively, try the vintner barrels in Ostertor, which can be found outside Theatro and Litfass until January. Kohlfahrten ('kale tours') are a north German tradition involving a handcart full of schnapps, silly games and, of course, kale! Many of the parties end up at Paulaner's im Wehrschloss. Not strictly a Bremen original, but fantastic nonetheless.
Another not-strictly-Bremen experience is the Almhütte alpine hut at the Grand Hotel. It's open from November to January, serving delicious dishes such as marillenknödel (apricot dumplings). When the hut opens its doors for each new season, it delights tourists and locals alike – including the Bremen Alpine Society, which has more members than you might think!
Anyway, back to the kale tours … Here's a popular game the locals play on their rounds. Why not try it at home?
"Every player is given a wet teabag. Holding the teabag between their teeth by its tag, the player gets a swinging motion going and, when given the order to release, sends the teabag flying as far as they can. All the results from the night are added up."