On our recent trip to Austria we had the great pleasure of eating at the Landhaus Keller, the restaurant where my husband’s father did his apprenticeship when he was just starting out on his journey to become a chef.
The food was delicious and the service was excellent!
We sat out on the patio in the sunshine and enjoyed 3 courses of Austrian-styled dishes.
I started out with a mixed spring salad with asparagus, goat cheese and pumpkin seed oil. YUM!
My husband enjoyed beef carpaccio with asparagus.
Even though it was not the special of the day, the owner had the chef make up the vegetable strudel for me which was really nice and delicious!
My husband enjoyed a braised leg of Styrian lamb.
As you can tell asparagus was in season and wonderful! Everything was so flavorful and it was nice to be eating food fresh from the Austrian countryside.
The dessert was a real treat – pumpkinseed oil creme brulee and Styrian layered strudel with vanilla sauce.
If you are in Graz I would highly recommend this amazing restaurant!
My wonderful Holga 135BC joined me in Vienna this year. It has quickly become my favorite 35mm toy camera and has been accompanying me on my project 24 days 24 photos over at toy camera dot com. (All are welcome to join this collaborative project – all you need is a film camera and the will to take one photo every day for 24 days.)
I had fun testing it out in the city where (arguably) Holga first gained popularity.
Riegersburg is a beautiful fortress South-East of Graz. This was first mentioned in 1122 as the strongest fortress of Christianity because it was unconquered for centuries. The interesting rock structure that the fortress is built on is none other than a former volcano.
The Riegersburg fortress is surrounded by beautiful vineyards.
There were a lot of bunnies in the moat – some really funny looking ones, like this cuddly character.
It was really beautiful and afterward we went to sample and buy some delicious chocolate!
Zotter is a famous Austrian “schokoladen manufaktur” - it’s organic and fair trade, oh, and delicious! With so many options to choose from it was hard to pick just a few.
If you are ever in Riegersburg both are well worth a visit!
Mariazell is one of Austria’s most famous, if not the most famous, pilgrim church and village. Located in the mountains of Steirmark this beautiful village is host to over 1 million pilgrims every year. Most recently, in 2007, Pope Benedict came to Mariazell.
The church is the center of the village with little streets and vendors all around it.
The church is really cool because it’s essentially a church built around another church. The original church was built in the 1300s is where the miracle working statue of Mary and Jesus (carved from Lime wood and adorned with beautiful vestments) and the larger church was build around it in the 1600s.
I would just like to say that there is a sign that says no pictures. After the mass several people were taking photos and I asked a man who was helping at the mass if we could take photos. He said they say no, but it was okay if I wanted to take a few. I was careful not to take too many and I did not use a flash.
This beautiful church and surrounding village was amazing too see. And after lighting candles, prayers and collecting Holy water the last thing to do was have a snack.
This little cake was delicious, I would highly recommend this bakery!
I hope that next time we will stay in Mariazell as they do candle light vigils and there are several other shrines and chapels that we did not get to visit.
Near Oma’s house there are several religious places worth a visit. Since the first time I went to Austria I have always wanted to go to Maria Fieberbrundl. This religious spot is known for it’s healing water, especially for the eyes. I am working on a translation for the sign and will update once I’ve got it!
This peaceful spot is accessible by car or pilgrim can walk taking the lovely nature trails. We drove and this quite village was very sweet, and boasts some of the best icecream in Austria!
Most importantly I finally got to wash my eyes in this healing water. Many people who visited also took water away with them, which I did as well. I have a small collection of Holy water now from several places.
Once a year in Vienna they open, basically, all the museums from 6pm until 1am for €13 (adult) and provide a shuttle service around town. It’s pretty amazing and since we just happened to be in Vienna on that day we got to enjoy it! Mike’s cousin from the Vienna area tipped us off to this opportunity and it really helped us make the most of our short time in Vienna. We went to Belvedere Palace in the afternoon and after a short break at the hotel and dinner we went off. We got tickets by Hofburg Palace at the Opera museum and started there before making our way to the Butterfly House, the Albertina (for an amazing Impressionists exhibition), Demel chocolate torte, the Treasury and Mozarts House. Here are a few pics!
This was my first time to Belvedere Palace and I was really excited to see the Klimt artwork as they have the largest collection in the world. The Kiss was incredibly beautiful but I really enjoyed all of them. Of course, no photos!
This was the garden outside at the end is the summer residence and another gallery.
At dinner we enjoyed some Sturm and Almdudler (like gingerale) – notice our key to room 322.