Café Landtmann
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Legendary Apple Strudel
Founded in 1873, this elegant Viennese café/coffeehouse has hosted the likes of Sigmund Freud (supposedly it was his favorite coffeehouse) and Marlene Dietrich—and it’s still considered a good place for people watching. When I located it near my hotel on the map the first night I was in Vienna for the Christmas markets, I thought it’d be a perfect place for an early dinner. The snow was falling, the lights just starting to twinkle outside when I arrived there—a perfect in-between time that landed me a table inside and under the sparkling chandeliers without a reservation. (I don’t think it hurt to be somewhat dressed up either-- wool skirt, boots, turtleneck.) I started to point to a bowl of soup on the menu but then saw the apple strudel with crème anglaise—and decided to make that my meal. When it arrived, along with my “mélange”, the waiter never blinked an eye as he set the Thanksgiving- sized -platter in front of me. After he left, I took a deep breath, then sunk my fork into the huge square of strudel –through layers of flaky pastry and thinly sliced apples—and then into the pool of the most delicious vanilla-scented sauce I’ve ever tasted. This is the “original wiener apfelstrudel” and if you’re looking to sample some incredible and authentic strudel in Vienna, Café Landtmann is where it’s at.
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