Recently, a friend was visiting me and since she has been living in Vienna previously for a long time, it was not our goal to go sightseeing and dine at all the touristy places. However, one recently opened restaurant grabbed our attention. It has been some time since Jamie Oliver opened a place in Vienna, but I have never got to trying it out, so this was the perfect opportunity to go and see what this is all about.
My experience with Mexican food goes as far as nachos with chicken fillet that I had once at Santos ages ago and as you can imagine lack experience. Few weeks ago, one of my very best friends called me up for lunch and she was going on and on, on the phone about this ‘great Mexican place’. I was a bit skeptical (typical me), but I really wanted to try it out and since me and my friend have similar tastes, I was not so worried about the food at all.
You may hate me for what I am about to say, but … gingerbread cookies are overrated. Few years ago when I was doing my Christmas baking I was really excited to make this recipe and guess what – in the end they turned out the same as the Spekulatius that you get in every other Billa. Of course you can imagine that I was incredibly disappointed, but last year I found another recipy that was incredbile and so delictous that I could not share it with you. As you can imagine I made it once again this year and I made a double batch since with my family the cookies are never enough.
I admit, living with roommates has its own perks. I have lived with several amazing girls while being a student and I have learned different things from each and one of them. My last roommate was German with Russian origins and cooked amazing stuff. Every time we were both at home, there was an amazing smell of home-cooked meals and snacks. Of course, when people live together, they share a lot – the roof, the bathroom, the meals. M. made the most amazing pancakes that I have ever tried, so fluffy and light, almost like little clouds that melt on your tongue. We both had nothing in mind eating them for breakfast … and for lunch … and for dinner with everything we had in the fridge. The other day I remembered about those delicious ‘oladushki’ as she called them and decided to recreate them.
You are searching for a royal experience over the weekend? Look no further – some coffee and some cake at Imperial will definitely make you feel like a Habsburger. I was here last week for the first time and I was completely taken aback by the grandeur hallway, the heavy chandeliers, and the cozy atmosphere. I think it is safe to say that I am in love with expensive hotels, but sleeping in these is not exactly on my student budget. Therefore, I always look for alternatives – in this case it is true that I had to pass on the Elisabeth Suite, but I was still able to explore downstairs.
Okay honestly, I didn’t know how to translate this into English/ German in order to be as close as possible to the original meaning so I went for “Kipferl”. Basically, those tiny, white-dough yeast rolls, filled with cheese have been my favorite snack for as long as I can remember. I still go back to my memories when my granny used to bake them for me and my cousins for an afternoon snack to grab and go out to play. I am a big fan of baking, but until now it never occurred to me to make them myself. They turned out great so I decided to share the recipe with you.
Who hasn’t heard of Julius Meinl, the great coffee brand that you can get almost everywhere in Vienna? Their name is a synonym for tradition, quality, and great taste but they offer even more than that. When I first came to Vienna, I was constantly seeing people walking around the city center with bright orange paper bags coming out of their brand store/ café. At first, I thought that tourists were stocking up on endless supplies of delicious Julius Meinl coffee, until the moment I saw old Viennese ladies coming out of the store, walking with small doggies on a leash and carrying bags full of purchases. Read more
A friend of mine once complained of the lack of gourmet choices of food in Vienna. Since me and my friends live in the central districts and we do not own cars, most of the time we shop at the Billa around the corner. That is what probably explains the relatively narrow choices of cheese (apart from President) and the fact that there are not that many non-traditional items to be found. However, such a perfect city like Vienna cannot be left without foie gras and truffles, can it? So today I am going to share with you three places in Vienna where you can find the perfect addition to your fridge, suitable for even those with the finest tastes.
Merkur am Hoher Markt
I have been to Paris more than a few times, but although now I may say I know the city well enough, France is a mystery to me. I am in favor of the opinion that the city does not reveal the soul of the country and this is the case with Paris as well. This time, however, I had the chance to get a glance at a little more different part of this amazing country – Normandy.
For everyone who has been in Vienna it is clear that this is the heaven for baked goods. Here you can find the most amazing pastries, bread and the second best croissants after the ones in France. The most amazing thing is that you can find them anywhere mainly in these two bakeries that are as popular as McDonalds here if not even more.
When I first came in Vienna 12 years ago as a tourist I was only familiar with “Anker” but not far longer after I found out there was a “rival” bakery in town and mainly – “Der Mann”. Till this day I cannot decide which I like better since both of them offer a great diversity and very delicious snacks.
“Anker” is established in 1891 so that means more than 100 years old! They offer quite a lot of different things but I’ve always seen them as the brand for all those “salty” yummy things like bread, sandwiches, different toast, etc. As well you can find here (which I find very convenient and pleasant) boxes with fresh fruit salads and regular salads like Greek salad or even if you want they offer soup to go. I just think that in the very busy everyday regime we live it is quite nice to have some healthy options in the menu. It is for sure easy to go and grab a Cheeseburger – I’ve done it many times, but a soup to take away is just so much better. And then imagine combining it with one of these salads or some freshly baked bread – yummy! Of course they offer a great deal of sweet treats but I think the prize in this category goes to “Der Mann”.
I think “Der Mann” has been around even longer than “Anker”. Let me quickly check that up – yep since 1860. So that means great traditions, great selection, great place! I enjoy going there and gazing at their windows – they have so many things that you can dribble at, that I just cannot count them. I remember that around Valentine’s day they released a line with strawberry-flavored pastries and well what can I say – that was definitely a dream-come-true. Because I am such a big fan of strawberries I think I purchased most of the things once they were out. I really love their small cakes and pies as well – every time someone invites me to go at their house for a coffee or tea, I go and get ones of these. They look divine, the staff makes sure to wrap them properly and everyone that tried them was as excited as me about the flavor and the look of it.
But there is one more thing I want to rave about that they sell in “Der Mann” and that is their “Panne Oliva”. I am in love with everything containing olives and if you are like me you will love this one. I am quite picky when it comes to bread and I don’t like everything that I try but for real – that is the deal. I suggest you give it a try if you haven’t already. If you don’t eat half of the bread in one sitting I will admit I was wrong but I am ninety-five percent sure you will.
So make sure to stop by those two bakeries since they hold in themselves a large part of the Austrian spirit and mainly – good cuisine, home cosiness and freshly hand-made products brought to you with lots of care and a smile J