Carp from Moritzburg ponds
In the early 16th century, long before Augustus the Strong built the ornate Moritzburg Castle, Herzog Georg der Bärtige (i.e. the Bearded Duke) dredged the numerous ponds on the royal estate and stocked them with carp that is still providing a livelihood for local fisherman 500 years later. In addition to carp, there is also a plentiful supply of tench, zander and catfish maturing in these waters. At present, the local fishing association administers 22 ponds covering a total area of 380 hectares.
After the fish harvest in autumn there are plenty of regional fish specialities on the menu of the Elbland restaurants in the run-up to Christmas. And the quality is impressive. Saxon carp have an excellent fillet-to-bone ratio, firm flesh and a high omega-3 fatty acid content. No wonder that they performed so well in a 2017 Europe-wide survey conducted by the State Environment Office. With over 200 farmed ponds, Saxony is the second largest producer of carp in Germany after Bavaria. If you prefer to gut and fillet the fish yourself, you should pay a visit to the Bärnsdorf farm shop where the fish are hauled out of the water at the time of purchase.