Nice and Cheap

Location:Buschenschank Eschberger
Address:Kurhausstraße 23, 2222 Bad Pirawarth
Status:Open (last checked on 26 March 2022)
Eaten:"Gemischte Platte," ¼ Weinviertel DAC 2021 – Saubergen, Der Wilde, 1/8 Weinviertel DAC 2021 – Gadlehen, 1/8 Weißburgunder premium Qualitätswein 2021, 1/8 Gelber Muskateller Qualitätswein 2021, a small bottle of mineral water

Weinviertel, the part of Lower Austria to the north of Vienna, is full of identical villages with vast fields separating them. Bad Pirawarth is one of such villages, and frankly, apart from a somewhat peculiar name and a low hill nearby there would be very few reasons to visit it if it were not for the wine. Like many of its neighboring villages, Bad Pirawarth features a “cellar street,” and although all of the taverns along it were closed today, the most famous of the village’s Heurige, Eschberger, was ausgesteckt and became the target of my short Brettljause-tasting tour.

The first thing one notices about Eschberger is how cheap the wine and the food in it are. Not a single wine type – and the wine card contained at least ten different white wines alone – costs even two euros for an Achterl, and the Brettljause (called a “mixed plate” here) is under six Euros, albeit excluding bread. The wine, considering its quality, is hugely underpriced, in my opinion. The price of the Brettljause, on the other hand, is just about right, though there are plenty of places in Austria that would charge you much more for a similar dish and not be ashamed a second about that.

There was nothing particularly fancy about Eschberger’s Brettljause, I must admit. It lacked spreads, for example, and the cheese was of the most boring sort. The Geselchtes, however, looked very tasty and tasted accordingly, and the Schweinsbraten were nearly twice as long as one is accustomed to see. I just wish that its crust were not so rubbery and unchewable. Having to cut off the crust and leave it on the side of the plate, looking a bit like a dead worm was quite unappetizing. The surprise highlight of the dish was the headcheese, which contained very little jelly and rather tasty bits of meat, wherever those bits came from (I don’t really want to know).

If you have a Sunday to kill and your plans are to do some serious hiking, Bad Pirawarth is probably a bad destination. Cycling around the area may be more exciting, but not by much. For a short “take a bus there, get pissed and go back to Vienna” trip, however, Eschberger and the village around it are perfectly fine.




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