Alex's Alliterative Adventures

Thoughts on Programming, Life, and Travel

Austria 8 – ChoCoPhonia

September 29, 2008

You just can’t have an Austrian vacation without a trip to the Zotter chocolate factory. We opted for a self-guided tour, feeling like Charlie let loose in the factory. We sampled, snacked, slurped, and became totally gorged, almost unable to move.

That was when we found out that we’d only visited half of the tasting rooms.

We decided to walk off our blood sugar levels with a tour of Riegersburg Castle.

The castle has stood for over 850 years without ever being taken, although I presume that its threat level is reduced every century or so.

The castle now houses – er, castles – 3 hectares of vineyards, with grapes ripe for the sampling. Since the vineyards grow on the slope of the mountain the castle is built upon, the grapes get more sun than the rest of the region. This means that grapes for red wine, notorious sunbathers, can grow here in an otherwise inhospitable region.

Our stomachs wised up to our plan, and they started to rally against us. We’d anticipated this gastronomical mutiny and arrived at a local Buschenschank just in time. We were pleasantly surprised to find that the couple that owned the Buschenschank had spent several years in America, where they met. Ms. American added an untouched North American accent to our dinner conversation. If fluent English speakers keep popping up in every small town and unexplored corner we visit, learning German might be slow going. We ate good food and smiled as the locals finished their drinks, paid their bills, tipped their hats, and hopped on their tractors for the drive home.


2 Comments so far

  1. Margaret Stacey November 28th, 2008 11:44 pm

    I have just read about your excursion to the chocolate factory- how long does it take for your samples to reach me? – I am still waiting. The grapes on the vine are the best way to take your wine.

  2. Alex November 29th, 2008 10:51 am

    Your sample had an unfortunate run-in with some starving college students. They should really keep the college population under control here.

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