Angela Merkel welcomed Barack Obama to the G7 summit with a traditional Bavarian breakfast on Sunday – complete with a half-litre of beer. President Obama had just flown across the Atlantic to meet Mrs Merkel, David Cameron and the other G7 leaders at an exclusive spa resort in the Alps.
But before he could get down to business, Mrs Merkel treated him to a full Bavarian breakfast of white sausages, pretzels and foaming lager. Eleven in the morning might be considered a little early for a beer in some parts of the world, but in Bavaria breakfast is not complete without a weissbier, as the local wheat beer is called. It’s not quite as hard-drinking as it sounds: Bavarians don’t down a quick pint before heading to the office every morning.
It originates in Frühschoppen – a local tradition of meeting for a drink late in the morning on Sundays and holidays.
According to Bavarian custom, the sausages cannot be eaten after 12 noon, because no preservatives are used and they are made fresh every day. Therefore those who wish to wash their sausages down with a beer must get supping before that time. The local saying is that the sausages must not be allowed to hear the church bells chime noon.