I have eaten geese with red cabbage, white cabbage, bacon, dumplings, berries, oranges, apples and chestnuts. I have never heard of geese being served with protein products. Nevertheless, the take-home bag with the Martinigansl that Lugeck gave me today bizarrely contained a protein drink, a protein bar and a flyer about other protein-rich stuff (which went straight into a garbage bag, so I am not able to give any other details).
It’s OK because we are living in interesting times. On Monday – the last pre-lockdown day – I was stopped on my way to Lugeck by a group of distressed and running people. As I learned later, it was the worst terrorist attack in Austria in years that destroyed my last hope of eating a goose in a restaurant. Now – and this is for COVID-19 reasons – all the restaurants are only allowed to operate in home-delivery or take-away modes, meaning that most of them do not operate at all.
Lugeck is an exception, offering a special take-home menu that includes a Martinigansl. Ordering by phone was extremely straightforward, and by the agreed time the bag with the goose, cabbage and cowberries (plus the protein products I did not ask for) was ready for pick-up. The packaging was impressive: The goose and the cabbage were served in separate tightly closed plastic boxes, ready to be put into a microwave. After two minutes of heating, the dish was ready, and I was happy to see that it looked the same as, if not better than, the goose I ate at the Lugeck last year.
The only problem is, the last year’s goose was not particularly good, and this one was worse. While the meat was OK and had a sufficiently “goosy” taste, the skin was completely undercooked, contained a huge amount of fat underneath and had a very unappetizing gray color, especially on the bottom part of the goose leg. It had the consistency of a sponge, and I did not dare touching it. I should have probably moved it out of my sight straight away.
The cabbage and the dumplings were edible for as long as there was some goose to accompany them, but once the meat ran out, eating them alone did not make any sense, so they went into the garbage bag together with the bones and the remaining cowberries. And then I’ve got a huge urge to do two things: 1) wash the plate and the cutlery so that nothing reminds me of the dish I ate and 2) eat something else quickly… but what? That’s when I thought of the protein bar. Needless to say, it was a big mistake.
I know it is unfair to judge “geese-to-go” the same way as the geese served in a restaurant, but in the case of Lugeck, with its fine presentation and packaging, I am quite confident that the result would have been very similar. And not good.