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Wiener Schnitzel. The emperor’s dish.

One of the most representative meals in Viennese gastronomy is wiener schnitzel (or Viennese escalope). In fact, is the national food, even is originally from Austria, actually.

Is a common recipe in many countries: in Spain is known as San Jacobo or cachopo, also seen as the Japanese tonkatsu, the Argentinian escalope or the Italian cotoletta, among other examples.

The origin has become an intense debate among culinary historians. Most of the agree to point the origin in Spain, where it was introduced by Arab traders, who already covered meat on bread during the Middle Age.

Then we have the legend, which says it was imported from the Italian "costoletta milanesa" by marshal Joseph Radetzky, who sent the recipe to Franz Joseph I of Austria. They said he liked it so much that he incoroporate it to the Austrian gastronomy under the name of winer schnitzel.

Therefore, many countries claim the origin. This happens often for any new invention even sometimes, what happens is that it appears in different countries simultaneously, a each country looks for old gastronomy books to claim the origin.

However, there’s no doubt that is a delicious and crunchy dish, wanted by any tourists that arrives in the city.

To prepare it, a thin slice of veal is softened with a mallet, then is dipped in flour, egg and breadcrumbs, and finally fried in butter. It’s served with potatoes, salad and lemon slices and seasoned with vinaigrette.

Generally, these dishes are easy to cook and delicious, but not so glamorous. That’s not the case with schnitzel, presented as an haute cuisine specialty. It might be because of the elegant way Viennese people cooks it.

Even the veal is the main ingredient for the classic version of this dish, pigmeat is often used and is more popular. There is also a version made of chicken or a veggie made of tofu, seitan or soy.

In Vienna you can try this meal anywhere in the city centre. This is a list with some of our favorites so you don’t leave the city without trying the Viennese schnitzel.

Wollzeile 5, | Bäckerstraße 6, Vienna

Neubaugasse 52, Vienna

Gasthaus Poschl
Weihburggasse 17, 1010, Vienna

Strandcafé Wien
Florian-Berndl-Gasse 2,1220, Vienna

Café Einstein
Rathausplatz 4, 1010 Vienna

There is not only wiener schnitzel in Austria gastronomy. Even it’s a little country, it has a long culinary tradition, mixing many European specialties. You shouldn’t miss a chance to try more typical dishes like tafelspitz (boiled beef), milling trout (Forelle nach Müllerin Art), Kaiserschmarrn (sweet), Palatschinken (Crêpes), Apfelstrudel (apple cake) or Sacher cake. Yummy!

Picture by Kobako

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