Saturday, December 22, 2012
Where we learned that the information on their web site was NOT in fact accurate, and they were closed except by special invitation. The specially-invited people pushing past us and being welcomed by the staff looked pretty goddamn festive, I tell you that. Wieners are curiously lax about this 'closing hours' thing, although I suppose it IS the festive season and one should be calling ahead, which we're not. They advised that Kierlinger would be a good backup, and I would have been happy to receive that advice, had I not learned in the afternoon that Kierlinger closed for the season on December 9th. Sneaky Wieners. Fair enough, this is a seasonal businesses. Off into the dark again, to Plan C.
this place that I'd seen recommended, which turns out to be the sister establishment of where we ate.). I'd seen on the map that there were a couple more places there, and being closer to a main-er road, in my desperation I figured something would be open. (Again, it was a Saturday night, but we've learned that that's no guarantee of a Wienerparty.) Mayer was the best-looking option on the square and the street leading north from there, and they had a cute display of behatted Santa-wines.
Is that Beethoven in the picture? Either way, he once lived up the street for 6 months.
I loved the atmosphere here. It's hard to describe the setup - a courtyard with a bunch of different-purposed rooms set up around it, which you need to traverse between in order to complete the traditional functions of a dining experience - ordering food, ordering drinks, drinking, peeing. How can I get this point across...how about with a panorama!
Someone told me on the way that her image of Heurigen was that the staff would just microwave all the food, and she was right. I'm not actually complaining, because it was tastier than it needed to be.
My main concer with Heurigen was finding an 'authentic' one - it seems that the ones in the Grinzing area in particular are plastic-tablecloth, oom-pah band kinds of experiences. We could have been lucky, being only halfway to Grinzing, or finding a decent place that happened to be open (and we DID ignore several others that advertised the quality of their music), but this was completely pleasant (and in business since 1683, which isn't usually a terrible indicator). I see where others say it's very popular and touristy - we escaped that by cleverly timing our visit for when most places are closed - and I also see that Austrian reviewers think it sucks. I'd happily tell you to go here, although in the next breath I'd easily admit that there could be much better places...I hear Stammersdorf is the real destination of choice. Hey, we've still got a free night tomorrow!
By the way, the wine was cheap and good. Austria is positively heaven if that's your ticket.
+43 1 37033610
One last point, a taxi to or from the city to here is going to be a lot cheaper than you'd expect.