South of Vienna in the natural beauty spot of Pannonia, lies the famous gastro haunt, The Taubenkobel in Schützen am Gebirge, Lake Neusiedl. What so special – well everything. Unpretentious gourmet dining, a sense of the theatrics that sleeps with the arts, gorgeously style eclectic bedroom suites and a verdant backyard and garden to dine, chill and care about nothing sort of place.
Taubenkobel is famed by those in the know and is considered to be one of the hottest foodie venues in Austria (Forbes ranked it 16th in the world) which attracts flavour hunters from the globe. This little restaurant, bistro & hotel legend needs to be on your gourmet bucket list.
In the Eselböck family since the mid-eighties, today, the ‘creative guru’ and daughter, Barbara together with her French husband, the award-winning Chef and raw kitchen maverick, Alain Weissgerber. This duo is always on a mission: how to bring you closer to the nature and the goodness of Pannonia, whilst being pioneering, creative and not being afraid of things new or old.
Farmers and producers in this region have long been the founding fathers & mothers of the organic movement, whereby animal welfare, minimal environmental impact and source are as natural as the wild herbs growing in the forest. I guess, it is this completely natural unforced conviction that makes the food served here so utterly fresh and inspired by the seasons as well as time-old preservation methods. The Taubenkobel is famed for taking the humble ingredient and rethinking it, they also forage in the woods for lost herbs, or digging up indigenous roots found only in Pannonia, including a very rare truffle.
Back to the main event. Even the bread gets the full Taubenkobel treatment straight from the wood-fired ovens – its crust makes a wonderful loud auditable crunch as it is pulled apart – never mind the butter, pork fat, thistle oil, sorrel, herbs, lardo that accompanies this small but significant piece of foodie theatre. The rest we should leave to your imagination – we suggest just booking a few nights there, and let Barbara and Alain do what they do best: present a Pannonian feast that will usher the smells, taste and textures of this rich region.
Apart from the plates of deliciousness – the scene has been carefully crafted to complement the food experience: contemporary artworks including Herbert Brandl, Eduard Angeli, Erwin Wurm, Andy Warhol, Rudi Holthaus, Franz Ringel, Thomas Baumgärtl, Sebastian Bacher White, Oswald Oberhuber, Otto Muehl and Markus Prachensky adorn the walls. Raw-linen tablecloths locally made ceramics, wooden blocks made from the trees across the lakeside: it is a DNA that is very much Barbara and Alain.
In addition to the main restaurant, the duo created a fabulously authentic wine bar, deli and bistro called The Greisslerei – which is where hotel guests kick off their day with breakfast.
Being tucked in Austria’s famous wine region, Burgenland, Taubenkobel is famed for celebrating its Pannonian produce and locality, and keeping it in the family, read up on what sister Stephanie gets up to at her Oggau wine estate.