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Pfunds Molkerei in Dresden, Germany
This little store in Dresden is the “World’s Most Beautiful Milk Shop,” an official title bestowed upon it by the Guinness Book of World Records. That claim might be hard to verify, but there can’t be many contenders rivaling the sumptuousness of Pfunds Molkerei.
The milk shop was opened in 1880 by Paul Gustav Leander Pfund, and was fortunate to survive the heavy bombing during World War II that destroyed most of the city. Little has changed inside the shop since then, although much has changed outside, namely the inventions of refrigeration and pasteurization that have made milk easier to keep at home.
But today Dresdenites aren’t just walking into this splendid dairy shop for a tall glass of milk. Now, they come for the atmosphere. The entire interior is decorated with hand-painted Villeroy & Boch ceramic tiles. The shop is covered floor to ceiling with dancing angels, chubby babies, cows, and woodland creatures. It’s all accented in gold and blue, and lit by chandeliers, which might delude some into thinking this is a luxury jewelry shop, rather than one selling milk.
The wares inside haven’t changed much either. Pfunds Molkerei still sells milk and boasts one of the country’s finest cheese selections (though they were forced to limit it to a mere three state-sanctioned brands during the socialist years of East Germany). The cafe upstairs sells dairy-based delicacies, like tortellini with spinach and grated feta or pork in pepper cream sauce. The shop also offers chocolates, milk soaps, and cream-based liquors, though it can be hard to reach them through the hordes of German milk-lovers.