Eating and drinking in Central Europe is serious business, and I am ever so grateful to have that Central European gene for being a non-weight gaining carnivore. I have written previously about this special season across Central Europe that commences in mid-August with Kirtag. Kirtag eases all of us into the wine and food and harvest festivals, which are thankfully followed by a brief period of culinary calm before the Christmasmarkts and their Lebkuchen and Glühwein and other regional specialties that can leave most people feeling like a stuffed Christmas goose.

 The first of the Kirtags have begun, and, today, the first of the autumnal food festivals opened in Heldenplatz (Heroes Plaza).  I wasted no time this morning, or so I thought, in heading over to explore the best of the Waldviertel, a region of Lower Austria to the west of the Weinviertel.

 11:00. Let the good times begin. By noon there were no standing-room-only spaces.


I happened to wander over to a hut devoted to the Waldviertel Karpfen (Carp) and learned probably more than I need to know about carp teeth and the items that can be made from carp cartilage (like that lovely belt).

 Wildschwein (Boar) sausage. In my tote, of course. But no smoked carp.

 Along with a round of that heavenly bread.

I went with the potato noodles and mushrooms for lunch, and can highly recommend the combination.

For a lighter snack, though, nothing beats brown bread with spreads.

Sometimes a translation isn’t a selling point (though I do enjoy a well-prepared Sülze, that description might not appeal to some).

I purchased a jar of Kurbiskern Pesto (Pumpkin Seed Pesto). Together with the wild boar sausage, a wedge of Mostkäse, and the hearty round of bread in my tote, I think dinner has prepared itself. As for the sample of potato hand creme, we’ll see. I don’t see it replacing the Nivea on my night table anytime soon.

Until next month and the “Harvest Thanks” Festival!