A Cellar Deli

Location:Weinbau & Schmankerlheuriger Linder
Address:Ahrenberger Kellergasse, 3454 Sitzenberg-Reidling
Status:Open (last checked on 28 January 2024)
Eaten:"Gemischte Platte," bread, ¼ Grüner Veltliner "Korkenzieher," ¼ Sauvignon Blanc, 1/8 Sommerwind

Larger supermarkets in Austria feature a deli section, where one can ask a friendly lady (or, rarer, a friendly gentleman) to cut and serve you a few Dekas (tens of grams) of sausage or cheese. Normally I don’t like to take advantage of this service. The hopeless introvert that I am, I hate to say even one sentence when I have the alternative to simply walk to a different counter and pick up plastic-wrapped (and, certainly, inferior) cold cuts myself. Besides, I find the choice offered by the deli section overwhelming; there are so many different sausages and all of them look so similar that even if I stumble across the one I really like, I doubt I will remember what it was the next time.

That explains why I like Brettljausen – each time I order one, it’s like buying a lottery ticket, with the important difference that if that ticket wins, I can come back later and buy another one with well-grounded expectations that it will win again.

Linder’s ticket was one of the winning ones. Located on one of the best known “cellar streets” in Lower Austria, this tavern is small, simple and noisier that I normally like, but its Brettljause is really nice. It’s like visiting a supermarket’s deli section and letting the employee make all the choices for you.

Of the nine ingredients that I counted, only the Extrawurst, the light salami and the cheese tasted like something I could also find plastic-wrapped. The livery sausage and the black pudding were absolutely edible – which left me surprised – while the ham, the Speck and the Geselchtes (unfortunately not well visible on the photo) were fabulous. Bread was not included in the Brettljause’s price, but both the slice of dark bread and the warm garlic roll were very fresh and tasty. Had Linder only served me the garlic roll and the Geselchtes, I would have been happy enough.

Linder is considered one of the “Top Heurige,” and this award is well deserved. It’s definitely worth a visit unless you are claustrophobic or too lazy to travel to Ahrenberg, which is, sadly, not the most exciting village that Lower Austria has on offer.

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