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#702

ODE TO AUSTRIA

27 Oct 2022 By

From 29 October – 2 November, Ode to Austria Introduces Austrian Cuisine and Wines to Singaporeans. Helmed by Two Award-Winning Chefs, This Four Hands Experience is Kinda Unmissable — Book Now.

Ahead of Ode to Austria, we interviewed Chef Josef Mühlmann, owner of  award-winning hotel restaurant Der Gannerhof. The restaurant was once his grandfather’s farm but Josef’s father, Alois Mühlmann, transformed it into the ultimate fine dining hotel restaurant. In 2003, Josef joined the kitchen team. He inherited his mother’s cooking skills, and before long he was working as its chef. Chef Josef aimed to revive childhood memories y offering traditional dishes with a twist: ‘forgotten’ dishes re-imagined as artistic culinary creations. This resulted in a creative yet down-to-earth Alpine cuisine. The restaurant has received three hoods from Gault Millau, three forks from Fallstaff and 82 points from À La Carte.

 

Josef-Muehlmann_bw (c) Matteo-Marioli-Fotografia

How do you define Alpine cuisine?

Our Austrian Alps provide the perfect environment and natural landscape to grow ingredients – from mountain pastures, lakes and meadows, we have an abundance of fresh air and water. Chefs and high-quality producers in Austria celebrate these exquisite natural flavours by transforming our local produce into a diverse range of Alpine cuisine.   

Why did you choose to focus on organic cuisine? 

Austria has had a long tradition of organic agriculture, and we are proud of our pristine mountain environment — even our cattle graze high up on the meadows of the Alps. Organic ingredients taste better as they reflect the authentic taste of nature, our biodiverse landscapes and changing seasons. For our four-hands menu in Singapore, we have brought over some of these ingredients native to the Tyrolean alps, so our guests can enjoy an outstanding taste experience of Austria. 

HR Brettljause Olpererhuette Zillertal (c) Olpererhuette_Manuel-Daum

What do you look for when you pair wines with your alpine cuisine?  

It is about keeping flavours in balance and finding regional wines that fit perfectly with the fresh flavours from the mountains. For Austrian Gourmet Week, Ampelia Fine Wines, (the region’s largest Austrian wine importer), carefully picked wines from our regional producers. My signature dish Osttiroler Schlipfkrapfen (stuffed ravioli) is filled with mountain flavours, and guests can enjoy a refreshing Weingut Pittnauer Pittnauer Rosé König from Burgenland — known for its watermelon flavours. As Styria is the Sauvignon Blanc territory of Austria, a Tement wine from Styria that has citrus notes and a hint of Mirabelle plum will accompany the delicate flavours of our Confit River Trout

HR South Styrian Wine Road (c) OEW by Julius Silver

What are some of the best-value Austrian wines we should know about? 

First, Austria has indigenous grapes that are yet to be discovered. Gruener Veltliner or Rotgipfler on the white, Sankt Laurent, Blaufraenkisch or Zweigelt on the red. Austria and Germany have an advantage over the much pricier Burgundies; our Pinot Noirs are on the level with top Burgundies at a fraction of the price.  

What makes Austrian wines unique?  

Our wines have ‘Sortenreinheit’ (varietal purity) that are great for food pairing. Austria has many small family producers, and they have been able to harness our unique agricultural variety, where each region has its indigenous varieties with unique wine nuances. For example, Grüner Veltliner, Zierfandler and Rotgipfler are only found in Austria. The high quality of our wines are inextricably linked to our geography and diverse environment, where vineyards are sited amongst Alpine mountains and verdant valleys. Younger generations of winemakers that have taken over their family business are coming up with innovative ways to introduce our Austrian grape varieties. They are well-travelled and constantly experimenting with new methods to advance Austria’s viticulture. There are even new non-alcoholic wines now! 

English info on Gannerhof here.

An Ode to Austria. 29 Oct – 3 Nov 2022, 6pm – 10.30 pm.

S$160 per person (six-course dinner) + $115 for wine pairing.

Contact 665F for reservations.

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