A Poor Alternative to Goose

Location:Plachutta Grünspan
Address:Ottakringer Stasse 266, 1160 Wien
Status:Open (last checked on 27 November 2023)
Eaten:"Spareribs 600g am Brett serviert," mixed salad, three beers (Ottakringer Dunkles)

I went to Grünspan to have a goose, which was likely to be my final one this year, and intentionally chose a Monday when I expected the restaurant to be comparatively empty. It turned out to be the last day when goose was served; there were not many tables available, and the goose was only provided to those who had pre-reserved it. Damn.

Thus, in the absence of a Brettljause on the menu, I went for my third most favorite dish, the spare ribs. It must have been more than ten years that I had tried ribs at Grünspan, and though I had no fond memories of them, the alternatives seemed much less attractive.

The ribs looked quite nice on the wooden plank, but the very first bite revealed them to be lukewarm. Fortunately, the second rack was much warmer, but the first impression always has more power. Soon afterwards, it became clear that the meat required quite an effort to be separated from the bones. That was quite strange because judging by the consistency of the meat, the ribs had been cooked for a long time. Whenever I managed to detach a slice of pork from a rib, it fell apart into tiny pieces, like pulled pork does. Worse still, those pieces occasionally contained tiny bones, capable of damaging one’s teeth if one was not careful.

The “marinade” mostly consisted of black pepper, which made my mouth burn slightly without giving me any flavory pleasures. The sauces, on the other hand, were actually not bad. One was a chili sauce, reminiscent of the famous industrial sauce served with Chinese food, but watered down to give it a rounder taste. The second sauce was a garlic/herb one, not strong at all, but quite pleasant on its own. However, the ribs themselves were disappointing: tasting too much of pig and hard to eat. I think I’ll give Grünspan another ten years to improve before coming back.

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