Austria Travel Guide: Nice To Know Facts About Austria. Interesting Facts.
The Delectable Sachertorte
Foodies will love going to Austria because of the heavy, hearty and flavorful food. It’s impossible to leave the country with an empty stomach because there are just so many rich dishes that will tantalize your palate. The desserts are just as divine. It can be a dieter’s nightmare, but simply heaven for a food lover. One of the most famous food items to come out of Austria is the Sachertorte.
The Sachertorte is one of the most delectable desserts out of Salzburg. It is a rich dark chocolate cake filled with apricot jam that was introduced to the delight of many way back in 1832. It is named after its creator, Franz Sacher, a 19 year old apprentice to the royal chef. At that time, Prince Metternich commissioned his chef to create a dessert, which Franz made instead. Later on, Franz’s son Eduard who also became a pastry chef, perfected the dessert and this is the cake that we know today. In 1876, Eduard established the Hotel Sacher where the torte is still sold today.
Today, the original secret recipe can be enjoyed at Hotel Sacher in Salzburg and is still sold in a wooden box. Food lovers should definitely try this dessert as the original ones can only be bought from the cities of Vienna and Salzburg.
The Composers of Austria
Austria was, without a doubt, a center of culture in its heyday. Perhaps one of the greatest contributions that this nation has given the world is the number of great composers whose music has enlivened ballrooms across Europe during the Classical and Regency eras. Austria is the birthplace of many classical composers whose music we listen to till today, including Haydn, Liszt, Schubert and Bruckner. The Central Cemetery in Vienna is even the resting place of Beethoven, Brahms, Strauss and Schoenberg.
The most famous of them is Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. He was born in 1756 and was a musical prodigy of the Classical era who started performing as early as five years of age. It was his father, a musician and teacher, who taught him music, although he evidently overshadowed his father’s talent later on. By the time he was 17, he was commissioned as a court musician in Salzburg, although he later moved to Vienna. He married and had five children, although only two survived past infancy. Mozart had close ties to royalty who were great patrons of the arts and music, although money problems plagued him during his life. He achieved much fame during his lifetime thanks to his music. He has composed over 600 works, from every major genre of music, from symphonies, piano pieces, operas and even choral music.
Mozart’s style of music has become the benchmark of classical music. His music is able to strike the perfect balance between delicacy and power. Mozart’s music was influenced by his travels, although he himself became a source of inspiration for many other great composers including Beethoven. Mozart died at the age of 35, although his music lives to today through his many musical masterpieces.
The favorite son of Salzburg has in fact generated an entire tourism industry so that travelers can retrace his footsteps, even offering visitors a trip to his home so that you can even see his first violin. Over at Vienna, you can see the grand home called Mozarthaus where he lived and composed the Marriage of Figaro. In Salzburg, travelers can enjoy the music of Mozart at Mozart Square. There’s even a dinner concert that you can enjoy.
No Travel Guide to Austria is complete without the Father of Austrian Waltz, Johann Strauss II. He was born in 1825 in a town called St. Ulrich, which is near Vienna. Like Mozart, Strauss’ father was also a composer and musician and he also later surpassed his father in talent and acclaim. However, unlike Mozart, Strauss’ father did not support his son’s endeavors to become a musician and encouraged him to be a banker instead. Strauss II popularized dance music such the waltz, quadrille and even the polka. He is best known for his compositions such as The Blue Danube, The Tales from the Vienna Woods, Die Fledermaus, Pizzicato Polka and Der Zigeunerbaron.
The young Strauss made his debut as a composer at the age of 19 and had a productive musical career. He later had three marriages. Unlike Mozart, Strauss enjoyed a long life before dying from pneumonia in Vienna at the age of 73.
Today, travelers to Austria can visit the Johann Strauss Museum in Vienna. The museum is the home Strauss shared with his first wife from 1863 to 1878, where he composed his masterpiece, The Blue Danube. Travelers can also enjoy his music as performed in the many musical concert halls in the city.
“Important Notice – You may use or download information available on our travel guide pages for your own personal, non-commercial use, provided that give proper attribution, with a link back to our website. Similar to the sources used for the travel guides, World Interpreting provides links to information and a number of contents we believe constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. More information here.”