Take Your Time

Address:St. Peter-Strasse 16, 39019 Dorf Tirol bei Meran, Italy
Status:Open (last checked on 14 April 2023)
Eaten:"Gemischte Platte,“ ¼ apple wine, two ¼ Weissburgunder

“Take your time” seems to be the current slogan of Merano (as the ads and the writings on benches in the town’s center indicate), and I must say it’s a very appropriate one. Merano’s labyrinthine network of streets and hidden passages and the way the town “flows” into the nearby villages of Dorf Tyrol and Schenna make it look bigger that it is. When exploring it at a slow pace, one always finds something new, and Merano’s seemingly endless number of cafes, pizzerias and restaurants invite to simply sit down, order half a liter of wine with snacks and enjoy the scenery, oblivious of time.

It is a mecca for Brettljause-lovers too, because nearly every eatery offers one – called sometimes “a mixed platter,” sometimes a “Marende” and sometimes simply a Brettljause. I bet it is impossible to try them all even spending a week holidaying there every year. It would have therefore been very stupid for me to accidentally eat at the same location as during my previous visit eight years ago. Thankfully, I have this website, and consulting it helped me avoid the blunder of revisiting Schneeweisshof, which was my original intention upon checking the ratings on Google. I went to Unterkronsbichl instead, and it was only later, when passing a sign towards Schneeweisshof, I discovered that both restaurants/farms/holiday homes actually belonged to the same family Paler.

Now, South Tyrolean Brettljausen tend to be quite similar and not very varied; all of them are guaranteed to contain Speck, hard sausage and cheese, for example. However, I am happy to report that Unterkronsbichl’s Jause looked different from Schneeweisshof’s one and was slightly more varied thanks to three different types of cheese (which tasted like two though). All the ingredients were up to the expectations, the Speck as great as only South Tyroleans know how to make it, but I appreciated the additional nice touches such as slices of apple and tomato, a possibly edible flower (I did not risk it) and especially the homemade chutney that made the not-too-strong cheeses ten times more enjoyable. It was also interesting to try a homemade “apple wine,” which turned out to be equivalent to Austrian Most, just a bit sweeter perhaps.

Sitting on the restaurant’s terrace was uncomfortable at times when the sun hid behind the clouds or a strong wind threatened to blow away my wine glass, but I could nevertheless spend quite a few very enjoyable minutes in a kind of a “private Heuriger” atmosphere. Unterkronsbichl is a place that encourages slow eating, savoring the landscape and the quality of the products. Like the rest of Merano, actually.

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