We settled into our booth and ordered the world famous Sacher torte. This was what arrived:
Wow! Just look at the crispness and evenness of the layers:
The extremely moist sponge might almost fool you into thinking that it had alcohol soaked into it (it hasn’t) and the thin, barely visible, layer of apricot jam added fruitiness. The thick chocolate topping was firm but not hard and tasted like heaven! The dark chocolate was intense without being bitter and the cocoa flavour built in your mouth with every forkful. I found it divine and was relieved as I would’ve been crushed if it wasn’t tip top quality. The CCBF (Caked Crusader’s Boyfriend), in contrast, was a little disappointed as he had hoped that the chocolate would be more bitter and rich. Having said that, here’s his plate about 4 minutes after we were served:
It’s also worth showing the coffee – although it looks more like a dessert! The liqueur glass contains a chocolate liqueur. I had a sip and can vouch that it had a kick to it!
The CCBF is well used to my obsession by now and anticipated that I would head off to the cake counted to photograph everything. Thus, on my return as I enthused about all the delights on offer he suggested that we have another cake. This is why I love him! When you peruse the photos set out below of the cake counter you’ll appreciate why selecting just one cake was tricky, but I settled on the strawberry torte:
This was truly patisserie at its finest. The base was a mix of plain and chocolate sponge, topped with the most refined strawberry mousse I’ve ever tasted – you know how when you make strawberry mousse you sieve it to get all the seeds out...but some always sneak through? This was perfectly smooth – not a seed in sight. The mousse was a loose set and so well judged; firm enough to hold its shape but soft enough to melt in the mouth. The vivid strawberry coulis on top was an amazing colour and tasted as intense as it looked.
As promised here are the photos I took of the Cafe Sacher cake counter. There are quite a few:
We visited the Mirabell Gardens early one morning and I fell in love with the dwarf garden; an area containing what I suppose you’d call Baroque gnomes. Mirabell will be known to you if you’ve seen The Sound of Music as the “Doe a deer” bit was filmed there. Behind the Gardens a food market was in full swing. This wasn’t a tourist market but where the locals were buying fruit, veg, meat and bread. We ventured in and were rewarded with spectacular sights, smells and sounds – it was also packed! Keen to blend in with the locals (who seem to drink beer and spirits at all times of the day) we purchased some goodies and retreated to the dwarf garden to enjoy them. The CCBF went a little more native than me settling on the local beer (a good effort for 10.30am!) and a pretzel:
I selected a chocolate covered bun:
At less than €2 this was a bargain. The bun was huge and, for a yeast-based bun, surprisingly light. The milk chocolate covering was a halfway point between a ganache and a glace icing. Just to prove I can be arty even when filling my face with baked goods, here’s the bun with the beautiful Mirabell Gardens in the background:
We took a boat up the Salzach river to Hellbrunn a palace famed for its trick fountains that squirt the unsuspecting bystander... but this is not a blog about fountains. The restaurant served a most pleasing chocolate nut cake:
Both the chocolate and the nut were clearly defined flavours and the sponge was extremely light. The sponge was flecked with minute chocolate chips and the top was given crunch with chopped nuts.
Luckily, Salzburg is aware of its culinary delights and there are many cookbooks for sale in English with the recipes for all the yummy things you’ll eat whilst staying there. One or two (OK, eight) of these books came home with me – as did my new friend Herr Stiegl. Here he is marvelling at the Salzburg architecture....
We both agreed (that’s the CCBF and me, Herr Stiegl kept his opinion to himself) that Salzburg was a wonderful holiday location and I would recommend it to anyone who likes fresh air and good food. The city is compact and virtually everything is within easy walking distance. For September we were blessed with marvellous sunny weather and I shall always think of the place fondly.