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Vocational orientation in the district of Görlitz

Eibau basin mine

An organic restaurant and enough space for a cooking school

Mountain dens have long been landmarks of our and neighboring mountain regions. Once created as shelters for settlers and their animals, they became popular destinations for nature lovers in the 19th century with the rise of the hiking movement. The existing options in the huts were used to offer day guests refreshment. Expansion and new construction soon began in many places, and tourist buildings were built. They also move with the times and have different faces today. Most have retained their distinctive character and rustic charm.

André Meyer is the chief mountain spirit on the Beckenberg. What we mean here is the English word “chef”, which translates to “cook”. He has always loved cooking. If his mother is to be believed, it all started with a bouillon cube and a children's electric cooker when André was at the tender age of three. He stuck with cooking, it's his dream job. “At that time there were many applicants for an apprenticeship as a chef. I was lucky and was able to learn my craft here in the region,” remembers André about his training at the Jonsdorfer Kurhaus.

At the age of 21, most people think of their first real “own place”. It was the same with André Meyer. However, he was not looking for two rooms with a bathroom, but rather applied to the Eibau municipality as a tenant for the Beckenberg building, which was built in 1905. For tactical reasons, together with his parents, in order to minimize skepticism from the local council. “To this day I am eternally grateful to them; we ultimately had to convince a few local skeptics of our concept,” he says. “Back in the early 2000s, we tried out a few things to draw attention to the new management of the Baude. But what has been there since day one is the sustainable idea. Even when I was a teenager, I was interested in the Red List of animals that are endangered in the population. Overfished fish were not put on the menu. And that was just the beginning,” remembers the Bauden landlord. Since 2009, the cuisine has had the motto “regional – seasonal – different”. This is implemented through a variety of collaborations with local producers. “Our menu not only shows the dishes, but also the individual sources of supply. I can tell a beautiful story about every dish I cook.”


“The way we buy the ingredients results in great encounters, friendships and a nice network. In addition to the actual craftsmanship, it is the quality of work that I want to do in my working world. Since I spend a lot of time in the Bauden business (the family has owned the Baude since 2007), it also becomes a quality of life for me,” reveals André. Seasonal cooking is a high priority for the team at Beckenberg, which even earned it an entry in the Slow Food enjoyment guide. An award, so to speak. There are guidelines for this entry. One plan is to use the whole animal and not just the fillet pieces.

The Beckenbergbaude has been organically certified since 2013 and can therefore call itself Saxony's first organic mountain inn. André Meyer infected others with his convictions. A field on the Beckenberg slope has been farmed biodynamically for two years now. This leaves room for a beautiful vision: “How would it be if the fields in Upper Lusatia soon became organic pioneers and the farms with the stables were run organically? I am aware that there are also hurdles and challenges that seem insoluble today. And yet I still dream of this vision of the future here in the area surrounding this old mountain hut,” André Meyer tells us.