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June 25, 2010

Cafe Teufelhart in Dachau has live jazz music in Cafe Bubu

Filed under: Dachau, Germany — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 8:15 am

Cafe Teufelhart in Dachau, May 2001

I took this photo in May 2001 when I stayed in the town of Dachau for a week.  One of my favorite places in Dachau was the Cafe Teufelhart.  You can see a recent photo of how the place looks now, with a sign on the roof that reads “Cafe Bubu,” on this web site.

The building, where the Cafe Teufelhart is located at Augsburgerstrasse 8 in Dachau, has been owned by the Teufelhart family since 1873. Willy and Marina Teufelhart are the current owners of the cafe and the bakery on the ground floor. Like the old town hall, which occupies the same spot where the town hall of Dachau has stood for 500 years, the Teufelhart Bakery stands on a site where there has been a bakery for 500 years. In other words, German bakers were making rye bread on this spot long before any European people had ever settled in America. During World War II, the Teufelhart Bakery was one of two bakeries which supplied the Dachau concentration camp with bread; the other was the Bielmeier bakery.

The Teufelhart Bakery is a popular spot for the locals who come here to buy fresh bread and cakes or to linger awhile and gossip at the outdoor tables along the sidewalk where the menu is printed on chalk boards leaning against the wall of the building. This place serves world-class food in the cafe inside and at the outdoor tables. The owner, Marina Teufelhart, chats with visitors and sometimes leans out the upstairs window to call out to people below.

Customers order from chalk boards outside the cafe

Prisoners from the Dachau concentration camp used to come to the Teufelhart bakery, and also to the Bielmeier Bakery, to pick up bread for the prisoners. The Bielmeier bakery was located on Schleissheimerstrasse. After the death of the owner, it was sold and the building is now a restaurant; most of the machinery used for baking is still there. Sometimes the owners of these bakeries would slip the prisoners some extra bread and the SS soldiers, who were accompanying the prisoners, would look the other way, especially towards the end of the war when food was scare in all of Europe, both inside and outside the camps.

After the Dachau camp was liberated on April 29, 1945 by American soldiers, the citizens of Dachau were severely criticized for not knowing what was going on inside the camp.  The prisoners who came to pick up bread each day had plenty of opportunities to whisper to the locals about the gassing of prisoners in the camp, but for some reason, they didn’t.

One of the things that I loved about the town of Dachau when I visited in 2001 was that it was mostly German with very little American influence.  That has apparently changed now and Cafe Bubu has American style jazz “gigs.” Swing music and jazz were verboten in Nazi Germany because it was not German music.  You can read about Cafe Bubu here.  The Teufelhart web site is written in German, but notice that there are many English words that are now used in the German language.

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