Saturday, April 30, 2011

V Zatisi @ Prague, Czech Republic

Cuisine: Czech/European
Price: CZK950 per person without alcohol (what I paid for)
Visited: 3 April 2011
Food: 6/10
Atmosphere: 6/10
Value for money: 5/10
Services: 7/10

V Zatisi, a Czech cuisine restaurant in modern decor and ambient, is located the old town of Prague near Charles Bridge of Prague. The restaurant is rather large and has friendly services. Upon arrival we were greeted with Tomato Soup with Foam as a complementary from the kitchen. It was presented in a small mug and tasted rather good (7/10).

Tomato Soup with Foam

We had soups for our appetisers. The first one was Jerusalem Artichoke and Basil Soup with Seared Sea Scallop. This may be a smooth and creamy soup but it was rather normal for me (6/10).
The other soup was Traditional Kulajda Soup. This Czech traditional soup had strong herbal taste with dill as the main scent. It was again creamy type and enhanced with soft-touch of quail egg (7/10).

Jerusalem Artichoke and Basil Soup with Seared Sea Scallop

Traditional Kulajda Soup

Next in line was Arborio Risotto with Porcini Mushrooms, Bio Parmesan and Truffle Oil. This creamy risotto was well cooked with great texture, however, it lacked a touch of finished flavour (6/10).
Crispy Duck with Two Colour Cabbage and Fresh Herb Dumplings was really tender and juicy with crisp skin. Though it was a pleasant dish, I felt it was just a typical dish that was well cooked (6/10).

Arborio Risotto with Porcini Mushrooms, Bio Parmesan and Truffle Oil

Crispy Duck with Two Colour Cabbage and Fresh Herb Dumplings

V Zatisi is a quality restaurant with indeed friendly services. All dishes came in large portion so that we had no room left for dessert. From my opinion, this restaurant has rooms for improvement and they are likely to achieve it.

V Zatisi @ Prague, Czech Republic
Betlemske nam. / Liliova 1
Prague 110 00
Czech Republic

Open Hours: 12:00am - 03:00pm for lunch and 05:30pm - 11:00pm for dinner daily
Tel+42 (0) 222 221 155

Monday, April 25, 2011

Central Europe Cafe - Vienna & Melk

This article is first of the two cafe topics in which I will be talking about my experience during my visit to Central Europe this April. Most of places I had visited in this article will be from Vienna. 

Cafe Central @ Vienna, Austria

Price: EUR10 per person without alcohol (what I paid for)
Visited: 1 and 12 April 2011
Atmosphere: 7/10
Services: 6/10

Perhaps the most cafe in Austria and perhaps a must visit cafe for those new comers to Vienna. I was struck by the architecture upon walking through the front door of Cafe Central. The casual atmosphere with the sound of music from piano, the old fashion coffee house which is laid out with wooden floor and marble tables matching with red chairs, beautiful ceiling in arch shape and wooden windows surrounding the room. The attractive cafe is located conveniently in the centre of Vienna in the Palais Ferstl with a history of more than 130 years. The room is pretty large, nevertheless, a short queue is expected during busy time. I had a chance to visit this cafe on my first day of the trip and again returned on the last day. Totally fall in love with this cafe.

The first dish I tried was Viennese Potato Soup with Cep Mushrooms and Bacon Pieces. The taste was delightful and lightly creamy but not so smooth (6/10).
Tomato Cream Soup with Star Anise was rather sour in flavour with hidden sweet scent. It was again slightly creamy (6/10).
Spinach Cream Soup with Smoked Trout Fritters was more enjoyable than the first two. It was more creamy with hint of white wine. Trout Fritter was also soft (7/10).
The only main course I tried was Halibut Fillet in Curry Vegetables Stock with Butter Quenelles. I was not so impress with this dish, too salty to me but soft (5/10).

Viennese Potato Soup with Cep Mushrooms and Bacon Pieces

Tomato Cream Soup with Star Anise

Spinach Cream Soup with Smoked Trout Fritters

Halibut Fillet in Curry Vegetables Stock with Butter Quenelles

Coming to dessert, the first to try was Strawberry Vanilla Butter Cream. A delicious piece of cake I must say. Tender texture combined with sweet scent of vanilla and large strawberry filling and light butter cream (8/10).
Next was Berry Strudel: great mixture of sweet taste and natural sour of berry (7/10).
Vanillecreme was also stunning in taste. Crisp layer of pastry with thick vanilla cream that was not so sweet. A hint of burnt sugar taste. Only let down with too thick pastry (7/10).
Chocolate Mousse Vanilla Creme Brulee was also good for those chocolate lover. Strong in chocolate taste. Chocolate sponge base with chocolate mousse and finished with ganache. Not so sweet but not bitter. Like it (7/10).

Strawberry Vanilla Butter Cream

Berry Strudel


Despite of being tourist attraction, it is still one of the best cafe in Vienna that you must visit. Friendly service with lovely dessert with historical ambient. Recommend for a visit.

Cafe Central @ Vienna, Austria
14 Herrengasse
1010 Vienna

Open Hours: Monday - Saturday 08:00am - 10:00pm
Tel: +43 (0) 1 533 37 63 ext 24

Sacher Eck @ Hotel Sacher, Vienna, Austria

Price: EUR4.70 per person (what I paid for)
Visited: 1 April 2011
Atmosphere: 4/10
Services: 4/10

Sacher Eck is one of the cafe in Hotel Sacher Wien which is famous for its "Original Sacher Torte". The cafe is decorated in modern architecture. It is always packed and crowded. The well-known Sacher Torte was not so delightful as I had expected. It was rather sweet with dry sponge (5/10). It may not be one of the best cafe in Vienna but should still give it a visit to try its "Original Sacher Torte".

Original Sacher Torte mit Schlag

Sacher Eck @ Hotel Sacher, Vienna, Austria
Betriebsgesellschaft mbH
A-1010 Vienna

Open Hours: 09:00am - 01:00am daily
Tel: +43 (0) 1 51 456 699

Cafe Landtmann @ Vienna, Austria

Price: EUR13.85 per person without alcohol (what I paid for)
Visited: 1 April 2011
Atmosphere: 6/10
Services: 5/10

Cafe Landtmann, an elegant restaurant with long history, is situated in the centre of Vienna serving Austrian delicacies. It is located right next to the famous Burgtheatre. It may look really busy all the time but there are large amount of seats for guests of the coffee shop. This is one of the top rank cafe in Vienna surely: food was nice and service was efficient.

Wild Garlic Cream Soup with Deep Fried Shrimps was dense in garlic flavour. An enjoyable traditional dish (7/10).
Goulash Soup here was rather thick and strong in taste. Not particularly different from other places (6/10).
Landtmann's Sausages (Frankfurters with Gherkin, Mustards, Horseradish & Goulash Gravy) was something that should not go wrong any in this country. Ok for me (6/10).

Basket of Breads

Wild Garlic Cream Soup with Deep Fried Shrimps

Goulash Soup

Landtmann's Sausages

Cafe Landtmann @ Vienna, Austria
4 Dr. Karl Lueger-Ring 4
A-1010 Vienna

Open Hours: 07:30am - 12:00pm daily
Tel: +43 (0) 1 24 100 100

Teufner @ Melk, Austria

Price: EUR3.75 per person without alcohol (what I paid for)
Visited: 2 April 2011
Atmosphere: 4/10
Services: 5/10

Teufner is a medium size cafe in the town of Melk. It is situated pretty close to the Melk Abbey on Wiener Strasse. This is a lovely and friendly cafe which serves reasonable price of food. It is also the holder of Guinness Record of the World Longest Apricot Strudel.

We had a chance to try just 4 things during our breakfast: Apple Strudel, Schaumrolle, Cappucio, and Hot Chocolate. All were delightful to me. Apple Strudel was soft with thin layers of dough and sweetness from apple and hint of somewhat like marmalade (7/10). Schaumrolle was just light and crisp, I love this one (7/10). Cappucino was nice with rather good espresso while Hot Chocolate was also good.

Apple Strudel



Hot Chocolate

Teufner @ Melk, Austria
36 Wiener Strasse
A-3390 Melk

Open Hours
Tel: +43 (0) 2 752 52 442

Demel @ Vienna, Austria

Price: EUR3.95 per person without alcohol (what I paid for)
Visited: 12 April 2011
Atmosphere: 8/10
Services: 5/10

Demel is a pretty large cafe which has been in operation more than 150 years. To me, this is one of the most favourite cafe in Vienna. Impressive decoration of the shop with pretty delicious pastry, what more would you want. Upon walking through the front door, I was impressed by all sorts of pastry in the counter, drooling smell hit right on my nose. What really impress visitor here was the vitreous show bakery on the ground floor: wonderful process of how to make such lovely cake is shown all day long. The main cafe is decorated in Viennese old fashion which is prestigious and elegant in style.

I had a chance to try just two pieces of cake from this legendary "Demel". First was Mozartschnitte. A pretty piece of cake it was. Having tart base with chocolate sponge followed by vanilla sponge soaked in strawberry sauce and fresh strawberry, and finished with vanilla cream and meringue. On a little sweet just to accomplish the task. One of the best cake in all cafe in Vienna I had tried so far (8/10). The other was Annatorte. It was a chocolate base cake similar to the famous Sacher Torte. It had layers of chocolate sponge and chocolate butter cream. Strong chocolate taste of rather good quality and beautifully decorated. There was also a hint of hazel nut. This would be great with a cup of tea (8/10).



Demel @ Vienna, Austria
14 Kohlmarkt
A-1010 Vienna

Open Hours: 09:00am - 07:00pm daily
Tel: +43 (0) 1 535 17 17

Cafe Diglas @ Vienna, Austria

Price: EUR3.90 per person without alcohol (what I paid for)
Visited: 12 April 2011
Atmosphere: 6/10
Services: 3/10

Cafe Diglas is a typical Viennese cafe. I was not so impressed with the service here. I had a rather large room. Cake here was not bad. We again managed to try two types: Cheese Cake with Berry Compote and Coffee Cream with Meringue and Raspberry Jam. For the Cheese Cake, I felt it was smooth but perhaps too much gelatin. Berry compote was rather sour but good (6/10). Coffee Cream was light in both taste and texture with little jam in the middle layer (5/10).

Cheese Cake with Berry Compote

Coffee Cream with Meringue and Raspberry Jam

Cafe Diglas @ Vienna, Austria
10 Wollzeile
A-1010 Vienna

Open Hours: 07:00am - 12:00pm on Monday - Friday
Tel: +43 (0) 1 51 257 650

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Landhaus Bacher @ Wachau, Austria

Cuisine: Austrian
Price: EUR115 per person without alcohol (what I paid for)
Visited: 2 April 2011
Food: 9/10
Atmosphere: 10/10
Value for money: 9/10
Services: 9/10

During the first 2 weeks of April 2011 we had a chance to visit Austria, Hungary, and Czech. We took this opportunity to visit cafes and restaurants around the areas. Hence, the very next reviews will mostly from outside Thailand.

Landhaus Bacher is a gourmet hotel in the Wachau area of Austria, which is surrounded by beautiful scenery of Danube River, apricot tree farms, and vineyard. This is a small hotel with only 10 lovely rooms and a famously known restaurant, in which the cooking team is led by Lisl Wagner-Bacher and son-in-law Thomas Dorfer. The dining room is decorated to be cosy, elegant while maintaining country style: the fireplace, the bookshelves, the wallpaper, every details are lovely. During Summer, a choice of garden, which is beautiful, romantic and unique, can also be enjoy. For convenience, a car would be crucial to travel here.

Landhaus Bacher Geniesser Hotel

The Dining Room

The Menu

Firstly, we were greeted with some complementary from the kitchen. Potato with Scrambled Egg and Caviar was feature like in both texture and taste. This might look like a normal dish but hidden with complexity (8/10).
Marshmallow with Spring Garlic: another light bite for the start, giving refresh and relief feeling (8/10).
Sour Cream Soup with Beef Tartar and Cucumber: Very smooth soup with scent of sour cream combined with savoury beef tartar which was sweet and tender (9/10).

Potato with Scrambled Egg and Caviar

Marshmallow with Spring Garlic

Sour Cream Soup with Beef Tartar and Cucumber

Moreover, there were choices of freshly baked bread to be picked from a basket. This was to be eaten with butter or fresh cheese butter and dill.

Kipferl and Kaisersemmel


Fresh Cheese Butter with Dill

Our first of the two appetisers was Warm Marinated Lake Trout (Laxn) and Crayfishes with Sliced Radish, Cream of Elderflower, Apple-ricotta and Grape Seed Oil. Wonderful texture of trout and crayfishes in a beautiful presentation as well as resembling the feeling of nature. An amazing experience from this dish (9/10).
Praline of Goose Liver with Black Nut, Elster-apple, Sweet-wine Jelly, and Brioche: I just felt in love with this dish. The pate had silky texture. Sweet-wine jelly was ridiculously delightful. A small scoop of peanut ice-cream went well with other items, as well as brioche which was buttery and soft (10/10).

Warm Marinated Lake Trout (Laxn) and Crayfishes

Praline of Goose Liver

Inside View of Praline of Goose Liver

For the first course, we had Neusiedlersee Catfish with Lightly Smoked Sweet Pepper, Gabbage, Green Mustard and Neusetzer Speck. Peppery scent led the taste of this dish. Though it was well cooked and prepared, it was not to my like personally (7/10).
This was followed by Ramsauer Char with Roasted Cauliflower, Parsley Stock, Scrambled Egg, and Butter-Breadcrumbs. Egg was prepared perfectly with expertise in the way that was not soft nor hard while char was really smooth so that it was easily swallowed down the throat. What fantastic was cauliflower with breadcrumbs which were tasteful and pleasant. To me, this dish was let down by only too light flavour (8/10).

Neusiedlersee Catfish

Ramsauer Char

Coming to second course, the legendary Tafelspitzraviolo with Spinach, Cream of Horseradish, Warm Cider Jelly and Daikon Cress was served. Every details of the dish were well organised. Cider jelly was sweet and enjoyable, this executed supremely well with creamy sauce of horseradish. The ravioli was tender (9/10).
Next was Glazed Sweet Bread with Creamy Kohlrabi, Peas and Parmesan Makkaroni. A simply delicious dish of sweet bread with hint of emotion from the garden it is. I like it (9/10).


Glazed Sweet Bread

For the main course, Fillet of Veal and Stuffed Breasted of Veal with Cream of Sweet Corn, Roasted Joung Corn and Perigord Truffles was presented. An innovative cream of sweet corn to go with tender piece of veal. A good dish for the Spring season indeed (8/10).
Grilled Limousin-Lamb, Onions, Shallots, Dried Tomatoes, Candles Amalfi-Lemon, and Crispy Potatoes was another main course. It may not be as great as those first and second courses but still maintained high quality. Lamb was crisp on the outer layer. Gravy was a little sweet (8/10).

Fillet of Veal and Stuffed Breasted of Veal

Grilled Limousin-Lamb, Onions, Shallots

Desserts were surely the real highlight of this meal. Mohr im Hemd 2010 with Chocolate Foam, Kakao-almonds and Milk Ice-cream was first of the two. Richy richy fondant-like in chocolate flavour came with heart-melted ice-cream. This was a typical Austrian dish that had taste of heaven to me (10/10).
Pickled Williams-Pear with Peanut Butter Ice-cream, Caramel Cream and White Chocolate Powder was the other. Top class pear with perfect sweetness of caramel cream and white chocolate powder was a pleasure (10/10).

Mohr im Hemd 2010

Pickled Williams-Pear

To end the meal, a set of Petits Fours was generously served. It contained Coconut Macaron, Orange Cream, Apricot Marshmallow, Selection of Truffle, Crackers, and Orange Juice with Cream Foam.

Petit Four

For those of cheese lovers, many selections of cheese from the trolley can also be ordered. Definitely, all of which are of high quality with unique taste.

Cheese from the Trolley

Not to mention the awards they have received, this gourmet hotel of Wachau is surely a place worth a visit for both local and foreigner. Rare and delicious food with high quality services in a beautiful surrounding. It is surely hard to deny the quality of this Haute Cuisine. Be sure to make reservation in advance and bear in mind that the restaurant annually close for sometime during January and February to avoid disappointment. Lisl Wagner-Bacher also herself gives cooking classes every Thursday and Friday with knowledge from professional side to be shared. Having a chance to go by Wachau, then do not miss out Landhaus Bacher: highly recommended experience.

Landhaus Bacher @ Wachau, Austria
Sudtirolerplatz 2
A-3512 Mautern / Wachau

Open Hours: 11:30am - 01:30pm for lunch and 06:00pm - 09:00pm for dinner between Wednesday and Saturday, and 11:30am - 09:00pm for Sunday
Tel: +43 (0) 2 732 82 937
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