At this time a year ago I was really hoping that 2021 would bring recovery from the rather dismal COVID-hit Brettljause year 2020. As it usually happens, however, 2021 turned out even worse. Nothing was open until mid-May and then again from mid-November. I still managed to travel a lot but was not always lucky finding Brettljausen. Spending a day of holidays without eating a Jause or two was unthinkable a few years ago; in 2021 it was the norm.
The end result was another 30% drop in consumption, with only 30 Brettljausen eaten and reviewed. The count was more than twice as much just two years ago! The average rating dropped a bit, as well: from 6.1 to 5.9. On a more positive side, a milestone of 500 reviewed Brettljausen was finally reached – not a bad achievement for ten years, one that leaves a slight hope that one thousand might still be feasible before my death. Not that this is the only thing I want to achieve in my life, but I like the idea nonetheless.
2021 did not bring any earth-shattering discoveries, so there are no changes to the Top 5 list apart from a slight shift in the recommendations for Tyrol, thanks to the nice Brettljause with a fantastic Grammelschmalz at Klamperbergalm in Stubaital. This is not to say that the year passed without highlights. Two of them, separated but by a single rating point, deserve special mentions and, of course, awards.
The golden Brettl for the best Brettljause of the year goes this time to Wolitzenhütte by the Nockalmstraße in Carinthia. The same hut wins in authenticity, atmosphere and size categories, the latter being particularly noteworthy: be sure you visit this place only when very hungry.
The silver Brettl goes to the wonderful Weingut und Buschenschank Schneeberger in Southern Styria. Specializing in pork products from fat Mangaliza pigs, it actually served a tastier Brettljause than this year’s winner and missed the top place mostly because there was not enough of it.
The other Brettljausen trailed quite far behind these two winners, but there is a bronze Brettl for the third place to give away, and in 2021 it goes to Winzerhaus Hans Schöller in Traisental, which also wins in the value-for-money department. I find Traisental quite dull, but the Heurige like Schöller make it worth visiting it from time to time.
In terms of serving a lot of different things on a single plank, Walderhütte Wöllaner Nock near Bad Kleinkirchheim in Carinthia was unbeatable – a shame that the weather did not exactly cooperate on the day I visited it. Finally, the Brettljause most liked by my Instagram followers was the one of Jausenstation Feilalm near the Achensee in Tyrol. The Achensee is very beautiful, but that simple Jause did not really deserve its 28 likes, in my opinion.
As for the worst Brettljause of 2021, Gasthaus Käpt’n Otto in Vienna’s Nussdorf was an easy choice. There is nothing wrong serving food to cyclists on the Danube Cycle Path, but a quick-and-dirty Brettljause is a wrong dish for such a purpose.
I don’t want to make any wishes for 2022 because they never come true, so let’s simply see what it brings and act accordingly.