At Plachutta

For everyone who isn’t Austrian, or Viennese for that matter, the Plachutta restaurants won’t be that well known. For all the others, the name evokes images of traditional Austrian cuisine coupled with loads of celebrities – A to Z – who love being seen there. And if you’re lucky, you’ll even end up on the walls of their restaurants or on their website.

Anyway, even though I’ve spent the better part of ten years in Vienna now, I never managed to visit one of their restaurants. I guess one of the reasons was that they’re madly expensive. But recently I had the chance to visit Plachutta Hietzing with the prospect of not having to actually pay for it myself, and well, so I did.

Since I had published a review of a Zwiebelrostbraten at a less fancy place just a couple of days before, I decided to opt for another Zwiebelrostbraten, simply so I could compare and see whether all the talk about best Austrian cuisine and stuff was actually true.

And I must say, yes, it is quite true. First of all, when you’re at Plachutta, you don’t have one server. You’ve got two, three or four. I had shredded roast potatoes with my Zwiebelrostbraten and they weren’t served on my plate. No, they were served in a tiny pan. Or pot. A tiny pot-pan. Anyway, they were served in that and a server came and put half of it on my plate, then the rest was put on a heating device in that tiny pot-pan thing. To keep it warm, of course.

And this actually happened with every meal. The minced meat got peas in a tiny pot-pan. The fish got potatoes in a tiny pot-pan. The fried chicken was actually served in a basket. And pieces of the chicken lifted from the basket onto a plate. By the server.

Now, I found that most peculiar. And even though it’s a total waste of manpower, I still found it quite cute. I might have to get someone to do this for me at home.

But on to the important stuff. How was the Zwiebelrostbraten? Well, it was delicious. Very tender beef, neither too salty nor too bland, with very crisp onions on top and a good amount of broth for the whole thing to soak in. The shredded roast potatoes were equally well prepared, and came, of course, with their own server.

So yes, it is worth going to Plachutta, if only for the experience of having three people serving your meal instead of, you know, one. Finally, here’s an image of above described Zwiebelrostbraten. I must admit, you can’t really see the beef and it looks a bit, well, not that great, but that’s mainly attributed to a lack of photographic skills.