Monday, September 11, 2006

Hotel Sacher & Sachertorte

Next we went to Hotel Sacher for lunch and had Sachertorte for dessert.

Sachertorte is a chocolate cake, invented by Franz Sacher in 1832 for Klemens Wenzel von Metternich in Vienna, Austria. It is one of the most famous Viennese culinary specialties. The cake consists of two layers of dense, not overly sweet chocolate dough with a thin layer of apricot jam in the middle and dark chocolate icing with shreds of chocolate on the top and sides. Sachertorte is served with whipped cream on the side.

The menu claims that Sachertorte is the most delicious dessert in all the world. That's a pretty bold claim. With my stomachache I wasn't in any mood for cake, but I didn't want to miss an opportunity to try it since we were in Vienna. After my first bite I wasn't all that impressed, but with each subsequent bite, I found myself enjoying it even more. The cake is a bit dry by itself but when eaten with the whipped cream, it is delicious. It may not be the BEST dessert in all the world (the German Black Forest cherry cake is one of my favorites), but it's definitely up there as one of my top 10 favorite desserts. I know what I'm getting when I go back to visit!
The Hotel Sacher is a five-star hotel, founded in 1876 by Eduard Sacher, famous for the speciality of the house, the Sachertorte. After his death his widow Anna Sacher became manager. Under her rule, the hotel became one of the finest hotels in the world, where the aristocracy and diplomats would meet. There is also an art-gallery in the hotel with works from the 19th century. Astrid enjoyed a little bit of my dumpling soup, but no Sachertorte for her yet. Uwe studying the menu. You can see more of the hotel/restaurant's decor in the background, with it's old world charm.

Unfortunately, a group of old German tourists sat next to us and were quite vocal about how the Sachertorte was overrated and had very strong opinions about Austria. In situations like this, it helps that I have difficulty understanding German spoken in conversation. But no such luck for Uwe who understood every single word and felt embarrassed. Rude tourists are just that. I'd feel the same way if a bunch of rude American tourists sat next to me. Makes you want to hold up a sign saying "I'm not with them."

Here's a famous Sachertorte reference:
On Sesame Street, The Count refers to Countess as "my little Sachertorte" before singing the "Number of the Day" song.


Trailhead said...

This entire post made me hungry. First you taunt me with a photo of that sachertorte, then you bring up Black Forest cake, and then, as if my rumbling stomach couldn't already be heard down the street, you speak of dumpling soup.


Amy said...

In all seriousness, you just solved a major mystery for me. I never did know what The Count was saying. I've just started letting B&B watch a little Sesame Street. I realized again I had no idea what he was saying.