A Wonderful, Magical Animal

Three meals have passed and I’ve typed nothing! How awful is that? After hours of flight and a nice ride on the train (a railjet) I finally made it to Salzburg. It was 7pm, and of course the information booth at the train station was closed, so I was left wandering, going the wrong direction for 20 minutes until my Garmin could decide on my location. Why does the gps need 8 satellites to triangulate?


After cleaning up, the hotel clerk suggested the Essbar Saran since I wanted something light. I wandered down the street and found it. While the menu features Austran standbys, it became clear that the owners were from another subcontinent so I cast my lot with the Bengali fish with coconut curry.
This is similar to food I grew up eating, so I can be a harsh critic. The flavors were really good, however, even if they did use dried coconut rather than fresh. That said, I’ve never had an Indian curry with water chestnuts, carrots, and snow peas, and it was a bit strange. I’m not certain if this is an authentic combination that one would find in Bangladesh, but I suspect they just mixed in a bag of “stir fry vegetables” to keep it easy on themselves. Sigh. I should drink more wine on nights like this.

The conference got off to an ok start, but the lack of sleep and time change finally caught up with me so I had to beg off. Consequently, lunch today found me at Carpe Diem for fingerfood, and it was delicious. The red pepper cone was filled with potatoes and capped with gigantic shavings of cheese. I wish I could make food look this beautiful. The only problem with the cones is that you eat food in layers. But with food so good I’ll accept the trade offs.


The cheeks of wooly pig with horseradish were tender and tasty. The only problem was I wanted more. The same is true of the dessert. The curds were soft, the cream was light, and the rhubarb sorbet tart. I was in heaven.

Finally dinner today was classic Austrian food. I had a plate of sauerkraut with sausage (think hot dog), roast pork, and ham. This was served with a bread dumpling. The latter was the only disappointment of the meal, being rather heavy …. Sorta like a matzo ball made with lead. Overall, the meal reminded me that a pig truly is a wonderful magical animal.

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