Christmas market in Leipzig, Germany
Since the Middle Ages, Europe’s Christmas markets have warmed and brightened winter’s darkest weeks. With stalls brimming with everything from hand-crafted toys, folk art, candles, textiles, and clothing to schnapps (fruit brandies) and other spirits, each market has taken on a character of its own. The German city of Dresden’s market, dating to 1434, is perhaps the oldest. Without doubt, it can claim the most famous of holiday cakes, stollen.
Join European cultural heritage expert Fred Plotkin for an armchair journey to experience Europe’s most famous Christmas markets, including Dresden, Strasbourg, Prague, Leipzig, Vienna, London, Barcelona, and little-known gems held in Esslingen, Germany, and Bolzano, Italy.
Holiday music adds to the festive ambience, and the evening concludes with a reception highlighting European-inspired specialties and traditional holiday sweets.
European Christmas Markets Menu
with spicy German mustard on a mini bun
marinated in lemon, mustard, herbs, and smoked paprika
European Cheese Board
A bountiful display of whole and sliced European cheeses such as gruyère, smoked gouda, brie, manchego, and gorgonzola accompanied by baguettes and country bread
Prosciutto Crostini and Salami Crostini
with sun-dried tomato and olive tapenade
Alsatian Onion and Cheese Tart
A festive display of Christmas cookies, chocolates, gingerbread, biscotti, and stollen
Hot mulled wine with spiced cloves, star anise, cinnamon, and citrus
S. Dillon Ripley Center
1100 Jefferson Dr SW
Metro: Smithsonian (Mall exit)