The Sacher Torte
In 1832, Prince Metternich was entertaining important guests, including the high echelons of European royalty. A man of perfection, he wanted a dessert which would please his high powered guests. However, when he visited his chef to instruct him on creating the new dessert he found the chef on his deathbed. Alas the task of creating that dessert fell to the apprentice, the 16-year old, Franz Sacher.
The penalty for not creating a dessert to the Prince’s liking could have resulted in death due to the Prince’s temper. However, Franz Sacher toiled away and created the famed chocolate cake which is now Austria’s favourite cake (and saved his life in the process). The Sacher torte’s success continues today with approximately 14,000 fresh eggs used every day to produce the cake to meet its ever soaring popularity.
I decide to check out this prized pastry in Vienna and venture down to the Sacher Cafe (which is within the Sacher Hotel) at the break of dawn. The hotel is the very epitome of luxury and the perfect spot to stay in Vienna.
The Sacher Cafe itself is quite a stunner; with beautiful chandeliers, red wall panels, dark wooden chairs, red patterned sofas and marble table tops. It is the epitome of the old world luxe era which all yearn for.
Finally I have the Sacher Torte.
The moist chocolate cake is quite a piece of sensual richness which leaves you a little weak at the knees while the sweet apricot jam layered within the cake flourishes on the palate. The ganache on covering the cake is hard but once it hits the tongue it melts. A flutter begins at your heart and flows through to your stomach with a little tingle which rushes through your nerves. The hit of the sugar, butter, apricot jam, eggs and flour is an overflow of richness which overwhelms all your senses.
You feel whisked away for a moment in time. It’s such an idyllic way to spend the day; seated in Vienna café, tasting the most beautiful illustrious cake, watching all the people engaged in conversation around you. There’s something so 1920s about it. The seconds disappear and the chill of the Vienna winter dissipates from my memory as I find solace in the beautiful sofa in the café.
I can see why people come here, it’s not about the cake; there’s something a little more to it. It is our desire for excellence, our desire for legacy and a reflection of our own deepest human emotions – this moment will always be “Vienna Forever”.
I actually visit the cafe a few times on this visit, so here are some snaps below of all my visits to the cafe. They have an amazing breakfast menu too which I enjoy on my final morning in Vienna.