I shopped at the Old World Christmas Market at the Gateway Mall in the Union Pacific Depot over the weekend to see how it compared with the Weinachts Markt (Christmas Market) I experienced four years ago in Germany.

My expectations were high after I read the press release, "A yearly event with origins in Germany as early as the 1300's, the Old World Christmas Market is reminiscent of days past." I planned to see row upon row of wooden booths overflowing with handmade Christmas gifts and goodies. Sadly, I have mixed feelings on the SLC market...not to say the venders didn't try.

What I did discover were a few wooden booths just outside the Union Pacific Depot, one of them, hosted by Seigfried's Delicatessen, offering authentic German cuisine. Seigfried's is one of a few local eateries offering the traditional taste of Germany: bratwurst, rot kohl, sauerkraut and more.

Inside the depot, about 20 booths boasting artisan crafts and gifts vied for my attention. Their prices and qualities were excellent, but only one of them actually had Christmas-specific items.

Compared with the hordes of homemade ornaments, Ruchermunnchen and Pyramide (a German nativity pyramid) packed into an outdoor market in the middle of the Europa Center in Berlin, Germany, the jewelry and home decor for sale here just didn't stack up.

But, if you've never been to Germany or seen a real Christmas Market you wouldn't miss those things at all. Luckily, performances by local choral groups helped ease in the Christmas spirit. Seigfried's cuisine alone was worth the drive.