This Easter holiday my friend and I took the long road down from the Northern Germany to the south and visited the capital of Austria, the German-speaking neighbor country. Austria doesn’t have a lot of differences in terms of culinary, specially from Southern Germany and Bavaria. There are a lot of “Krauts”, “Wurst” and many other similar things.
The first thing we ate was a hot dog with Käsekrainer sausage. It’s not the typical American hot dog you’d expect to come along with pickles and fried onions and all. It was just…. bun and sausage. Käsekrainer is one of the Krainer sausage family and common to be found in whole Austria and Slovakia. Käse means cheese in German, and it does contain an amount of cheese. The first part of the hot dog was rather enjoyable, soft bun with a couple burnt spots on it, decent sausage, a bit of mayo inside the bun (in the store i was in, you could choose your condiment – ketchup, mayo, or mustard). As it comes to the last part of eating, it kind of became heavy. The cheese was nice but that at the same time made the chewing a lot harder because of its sticky texture. I would say there are better local hot dogs than this one.
As we went along with the schedule, I thought, maybe we could try something more local. So we had this place up the list, it’s called Schachtelwirt, located near to the Schwedenplatz U-Bahn station. The place was very nice, stands on the quiet side of the district. The small space didn’t bother me, as it was very well decorated. As we came we saw 5 dishes, two of them are each appetizer and dessert. However interestingly they have different set of menu every week, which you can see at their website here. We ordered root veggie hash brown with creamy white cabbages (it’s Kraut – they should name it Kreamy Kraut). I was not sure what the green leaves might be, but my first guess was rucola’s family, as it was very bitter.
It was excellent; the hash brown was crispy on the outside, but very soft inside. I’m sure potato hash brown are the ones that are more popular but this root veggie hash brown was the hit of the dish. Then I had the Kreamy Kraut (deep down the box in the picture, sorry for that). It was surprisingly rather savory than i was expecting it to be. It was also not as creamy as I expected, but it was a good side for the hash brown. I guess it’s intended not to be heavy and creamy at the first place, hence the Kraut’s texture. One thing I don’t like; it’s a little way too salty. I ate the hash brown and the Kraut with the bitter green leaves, since it nullified the saltiness very well. When I just ate the hash brown and the Kraut, it was too much – for me. Nonetheless, overall it was a nice light dish.
After a nice rest, we went on another food hunt for our dinner. Another place on our list was Schillinger Swing Kitchen. It’s a vegan burger and wrap joint, located on the street called Operngasse, near the U-Bahn station Karlsplatz. Probably not the most local thing to have, but it was a safe bet since it’s highly recommended on the net. The place is in general very modern, with black-wood-white color theme, similar to Schachtelwirt. As I saw that the napkins are recycled, I instantly assumed that mainly and almost everything the restaurant made was homemade and it was the kind of bio-ethically fair restaurant, which was extra point.
I ordered a Swing Burger, as my friend ordered the Vienna Burger. Mine was the contemporary, old fashioned Burger, with soy patty, BBQ sauce, salad, tomato, pickles and fried onion. As a menu I could have a drink and a choice of sides (fries, coleslaw or onion rings) and naturally, I went with fries. Vienna Burger; the (probably) more local version consists of vegan Schnitzel, garlic sauce, chives, salad, red onion, tomato, pickles and fried onion.
The Swing Burger was, well, a burger as you’d expect, since it was old-fashioned. The patty was delicious, better than every veggie or vegan patty I ever had. I had nothing particular to say about the sauce, but it was decent in general. The Vienna Burger was a better burger overall. The schnitzel was very well made. It didn’t taste like not-meat, tasted like a real Schnitzel and real meat. The garlic sauce stroke me more like a sour cream, but whatever it was it was amazing. It goes really well with the Schnitzel and as i said before, it was the better burger. My friend ordered an extra condiment as well, a homemade mayo, which was a really interesting version, since it used lemon. It had a little bit of everything – sweet, salty and sour. All of the dishes and extras are able to be found on their site, right here.
The trip is not over yet, though. We will have another day in the city and document all the foods we have. Until then, stay mad!