Zachhofalm in Hochkönig

Why go to a ski resort on a cloudy week in September? It’s not warm enough to enjoy summer hiking or biking, and of course no snow yet to ski.

Well, here’s why.

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Zachhofalm is situated in one of Salzburgerland’s most popular ski areas – Hochkönig. It is a old Alm with a beautiful tale of two ladies who cared for the alm, the region, and explored the healing and health effects of nature’s produce that grew around them.

The Alm is now run by a young woman who is continuing to build upon this wonderful spirit – there is an extension which includes a seminar room and modern hotel-style rooms, many out-door bathing tubs and an open kitchen perfect for group cooking. Zachhofalm sources food as locally as possible, has an abundant herb garden, and prides itself with Vegan dishes (very unusual for a rural hut in Austria!).

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We stayed up in Zachhofalm for one night and used the bright, airy, view-full conference room in the day. For the evening we went over to the main hut restaurant area which had a beautifully rustic open kitchen giving it an authentic homely feel.

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Dinner was amazing. Vegan, flavoursome and all made from scratch: a salad with figs, wild mushrooms, walnuts, grapes and an amazing blueberry balsamic dressing.

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Then on a bed of cabbage salad was Kärntner Nudeln or like a ‘Pasty’, filled with potatoes, onions and stinging-nettles.

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And if you think dinner was impressive, look at breakfast!

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But now onto the highlight. The Vegan Kaiserschmarrn with Apple-Elderflower-Berry Compote.

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(For those who are not sure what Elderflower Berries are, they are these very dark blackcurrant-like berries).

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FOR THE FULL KAISERSCHMARRN VIDEO CLICK HERE.

Thankyou to all at Zachhofalm who made the stay so wonderful! http://www.zachhofalm.at/

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Cycling from Linz to Vienna: A Kaiserschmarrn Guide

Cycling at the weekend is the best. Especially when you have a whole weekend free to do so. There’s an abundance of great cycle paths around Austria, but choosing the right one can be tricky. You want it to be challenging, but not too challenging, as you need those important relaxing moments. You need to be able to do it within the 2-day weekend, but you want to feel like you’ve achieved some significant distance. You don’t want to just cycle the same paths around your area. And you want plenty of cafes and stopping points where you can refuel.

We decided to cycle from Linz to Vienna. Why? Following a river means relatively flat terrain, and the Danube has (for the majority) a well kept cycle path, popular amongst amateur and experienced cyclists. Starting and ending at two major train stations ensures that you can count on great connections wherever you live. And of course there are plenty of Gasthuas’, riverside cafes, restaurants and small villages to explore.

The best thing? The 200+ kilometer bike ride means you burn over 6,000 more calories than you usually do (*calculations based on quick googling, may be inaccurate although make you feel good). And with one portion of Kaiserschmarrn being approximately 500 calories, theoretically you afford to fuel yourself with the dish at least several times per day…

To make sure you have the important (Kaiserschmarrn) information you need to do this cycle ride, we’ve put together some recommended stops for the ride. So if you’re looking to do all or any portion of this ride then take a look at The Schmarrn Kaiserin’s Linz – Vienna Kaiserschmarrn Guide below:

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Click here to download PDF version

1. Linz – Café Traxlmayr (2km)

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so we’d say getting Kaiserschmarrn in the stomach early is best. This Linz coffee house is open at 7.30am on Saturday for the early start.

2. Mauthausen – Ed Kaiser’s Gasthaus (23km)

The first hour is done, you definitely deserve a break. Stop at Mauthausen Kaiserschmarrn at the namely ‘Ed Kaiser’s Gasthaus’.

3. Wallsee – Gasthof Grünling (42km)

This is a short, quaint stop at the small town of Wallsee. You have to make a slight detour from the cycle path and take the bridge from the north to the south of the river, but it’s worth it to see Schloss Wallsee and a quick visit to Gashof Grünling to sample the Schmarrn.

4. Ybbs an der Donnau – Gasthof Mang (78km)

Wohoo! It’s the final part of day one, so before you get to your Saturday night destination, cycle the curve of the river at Ybbs and visit Gasthof Mang, which has big benches and a garden to enjoy the Kaiserschmarrn.

5. Melk – Cafe zum Fürsten (101km)

We stayed overnight in the Youth Hostel in Melk. Good value and great location. After getting our rooms and showering, we walked our tired legs through the cobbled streets of Melk to look at the stunning Abbey. Hungry, we found ourselves somewhere for dinner (that of course served Kaiserschmarrn).

6. Krems am der Donau – Café Berger (132km)

Day two, and probably already tired after the previous days cycle. A mid-morning dose of sugar is advisable, so stop at another traditional coffee house in Krems.

7. Tulln – Adlerbräu (175km)

Although Kaiserschmarrn is not on the regular menu, they often include it on the daily special menu. Sit outside or inside, and enjoy the town square view with the reassurance that you have only got the final section to Vienna left to cycle.

8. Vienna – Heindl’s Schmarren & Palatschinkenkuchl (215km)

There are many places in Vienna to enjoy Kaiserschmarrn, too many to mention in this article. However if you’ve cycled for the last 2 days you definitely deserve to devour Kaiserschmarrn at one of Vienna’s most indulgent eateries – Heindl’s Schmarren & Palatschinkenkuchl. It sells savoury and breaded pancakes as well as the classic Kaiserschmarrn. Refuel before getting on the train and most likely falling asleep.

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Heidelberger Hütte in Silvretta

3 days of heavy snowing (at the end of April!) just before the last weekend that Ischgl – one of the biggest ski-resorts in Tirol (crossing Austria and even Switzerland) – is open.

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Big, beautiful, Ischgl with numerous skiing routes

And the weather forecast? Sunny bluebird. This means one thing: get up Saturday, take all our skiing gear and head direction Ischgl. Goal of the day was clear – a proper skiing farewell to 2016/17’s winter season.

Conditions couldn’t be better, might even have been the best during this entire season. Fresh, glittering snow covers the slopes…but most importantly, the great off-piste areas.

Whilst waiting for the first gondola, we saw that we weren’t the only ones that had realized these heavenly-conditions. Many groups of excited skiers and snowboarders were standing in the line with us. We needed to be fast to catch as many fresh-lines as possible before all of it was ridden. Of course, with full avalanche -equipment in the backpack. Safety first.

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Paradise found: champagne snow only for us.

At 12pm it was time for a well-deserved break. As we already had skied the best lines, sunbathing and food was now more attractive than staying on the slopes. We wanted to avoid the usual midday-overload in restaurants in Ischgl, and rather find a cozy, calm place to have a break. So we took the off-piste ride to Heidelbergerhutte.

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Break is calling! On the way to Heidelbergerhütte

Heidelbergerhütte is a mountain hut located in Silvretta Alps in Switzerland, almost touching Austrian boarders. It is easily accessible from Ischgl resort – via Piz Val Gronda and some nice off piste ride (otherwise via several ski-touring routes). Skiing over the border, we found us a sunny table on the terrace of hut. It was the last week that the hut is open for the winter season (it opens again for the summer season beginning of June).

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Heidelbergerhütte is a beauty in the winter sun.

They serve Kaiserschmarrn. Amazing. There is no need to read the other possibilities of sweet-treats (even though the home-made cakes are very luring). After 15 minutes, the Kaiserschmarrn was served in pan, I love this ‘authentic’ touch as it gives me the feeling of being at traditional hut. It had big fluffy pieces with two different and delightful toppings (cranberries and apple mouse), a sufficient dusting of sugar and no raisins. It was delicious, and did not take long until it was all gone.

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Our fresh, tasty and energy-giving Kaiserschmarrn

With happy bellies it was no problem to take a quick nap on the sun and afterwards enjoy last ride down, back to Ischgl.  Nicely tired driving home to Innsbruck, we agreed that we couldn’t ask for better winter-goodbye session. It was a blast! Can’t wait when the next winter starts again.

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Crossing borders. Going back to Ischgl and home.

Visit the website for Heidelberger Hütte: http://www.heidelberger-huette.at/

Written by Zuzana Gálfyová, living in Insbruck and spending all her time in the mountains. She is actively taking part in supporting outdoorchicks, community of outdoor motivated girls in Innsbruck (check the website: www.outdoorchicks.org) She is an avid and experienced Kaiserschmarrn lover, and part of the Schmarrn Kaiserin family. 

5 Most Debated Things About Kaiserschmarrn

1. Is it a desert or a main course?!

It may be sweet, but who can really eat a whole plate of Kaiserschmarrn after a main course? Perhaps you had a salad…but let’s face it, you probably ate a Schnitzel, and therefore this whopping 600+ calorie desert isn’t exactly the light bite you were after.

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2. Who makes the best Kaiserschmarrn?

Well, apparently everyone’s Grandma. No questioning.

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‘Oma Kathi’ – Photo credit: Hener Sieger

3. Raisins or no raisins

The polarising topic. Nobody sits on the fence. Ask yourself, which side are you on?

4. It’s not just chopped up pancake

Most literal translations of a menu will write ‘chopped up pancake’, but does this do the dish justice? It’s more than a flat soggy pancake in bits with sugar and lemon, it’s chunky, fluffy, and comes with a full helping of sauce. Which brings us onto the final topic…

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Gabühelhütte in Hochkönig

5. Apple or Zwetschgen (plum)

It’s always Apple or Zwetschgen (I’m sorry, but chocolate sauce is just not right). Does your heart leap for joy when it’s the pureed apple, or does your taste buds long for the chunky Zwetschgen?

Zapferl Alm in Mühlbach am Hochkönig

Hochkonig, is one of the most popular skiing areas in Salzburgerland; famous for the Königstour (an easy to follow 32km skiing route) and the Bue Tomato Kings Park . Mid way through the day on a dreamy, blue-skied Sunday, we checked out the Kaiserschmarrn at Zapferl Alm.

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Credit: zapferlalm.at

If you have been to Hochkönig, you probably know which Alm this is. It’s located at the bottom of the park, beside the Kings Cab, and the restaurant marks the start of that lovely long blue run that takes you through the trees back to the car park in Mühlbach.

We sat outside in the terrace with the sun beaming down on us and gazed at the staggering mountain range that dominates the backdrop. We (two friends and I) decided to share a Schmarrn – usually a wise option when you have already eaten a stuffy main course! A friendly and fast table service meant that we didn’t have long to wait until the Kaiserschmarrn arrived.

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The Kaiserschmarrn was presented in a lovely, piping hot pan, but the portion size wasn’t particularly justifiable for three of us to share.

Javi commented on the Apfelmus ‘It’s is very creamy, you can really taste the apples so you know it’s natural’. Dani added ‘and there’s a lot of it which is good’.

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This Kaiserschmarrn contained no raisins, and the pieces were an assortment of small, crispy fragments, to chunkier slabs. ‘I’d give fluffyness an eight’ said Dani, which is a pretty high score for this crucial texture element. The batter, however, was a bit too oily and this slightly offset the overall taste.

All in all the guys gave it 7.5/10 and 8/10. This, combined with the positive experience (the stunning surrounding, easy location and friendly atmosphere), Zapferl Alm is a must for anyone spending a day in Hochkönig. It’s perfect for a terrace sunbathe, a pre-last run Apres ski, and of course a Kaiserschmarrn.

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Check out the website at http://www.zapferlalm.at/

5th December 2016

Kathi kommt aus Deutschland, aber wohnt in Salzburg. Sie isst Kaiserschmarrn mit Vanillesauce, gemischt mit kleinen Stückchen Lebkuchen. Nicht so traditional, sehr süß aber sehr lecker. „Die Kombination passt sehr, sehr gut und schmeckt sehr weihnachtlich!“. Sie mag keine Rosinen, deswegen passt diese Variation gut. „Meinen Lieblingskaiserschmarrn gibt es auf der Kampenwand, ein Berg in Aschau. Ich hab da früher gearbeitet in einem Restaurant auf der Spitze des Bergs. Dort ist der Kaiserschmarrn mit Obst, in großen Stücken, sehr fluffig – der Beste.“ Kaiserschmarrn mit Obst klingt ein bisschen gesund… Das muss ich ausprobieren.

Kathi comes from Germany but lives in Salzburg. She eats Kaiserschmarrn with vanilla sauce mixed with small pieces of Gingerbread. Not so traditional, very sweet, but so tasty „The combination is great and tastes very Christmassy!“. She dislikes raisins, so this variation suits her perfectly. „My favourite Kaiserschmarrn is on the Kampenwand, a mountain in Aschau. I used to work there in a restaurant on the peak of the mountain. Kaiserschmarrn here is with fruit, big peices, very fluffy – the best.“ Kaiserschmarrn with fruit sounds a bit healthy…I must try it out.

6th December 2016

Diese liebe vier Frauen essen Weinachtskaiserschmarrn mit Apfel, Nüssen und Zimt. “Ich liebe Rosinen” alle Frauen sind klar einverstanden. Aber, in eurer Meinungen, wo kann man besten Kaiserschmarrn finden? “Natürlich, meine ist der beste” “Nein, meine!” “Na, ich glaube meine”…und so begann die Debatte…

These lovely four women eat Christmas Kaiserschmarrn with apple, nuts and cinnamon. “I love raisins” chime all of the ladies in agreement. But, in their opinion, where can one find the best Kaiserschmarrn? “Mine, of course” “No, mine!” “No, I think mine”…and so begins the debate…

9th December 2016

Travis, David and Gail are all originally from Los Angeles – although currently one lives in Salzburg and another in Munich. After talking extensively about the Kaiserschmarrn in Los Angeles (including BierBeisl), we begin talking about the Kaiserschmarrn here in Salzburg. “It’s pretty lush” David says. They all really enjoy the doughy-ness of it, thinking this may be down to the paper box that it comes in., as opposed to a pan. Their opinion of the best of the best Kaiserschamrrn – “My mum’s is my favourite Kaiserschmarrn. It includes caramelized Walnuts in it”.

Travis, David und Gail sind ursprünglich aus Los Angeles – aber wohnen gerade in Salzburg und München. Nach vielen Gesprächen über Kaiserschmarrn aus Los Angeles (z.B. BierBeisl) begannen wir über Kaiserschmarrn hier in Salzburg zu reden. „Es ist sehr lush“ sagt David. Alle drei genießen die ‚doughy-ness’ und denken, dass es wegen des Pappkartons ist (im Gegensatz zu einer Pfanne). Ihre Meinung – „Der Kaiserschmarrn von meiner Mutter ist mein Lieblingskaiserschmarrn. Er ist mit karamellisiert Walnüssen.“

12th December 2016

Meg besucht Salzburg und isst ihren Kaiserschmarrn mit Schokolade. „Es ist ziemlich einfach, nett und sättigend. Ich habe gehört, dass der Schmarrn etwas Ähnliches wie Palatschinken ist“. Soll Kaiserschmarrn zurück nach Großbritannien gehen? „Nein, ich glaube nicht. Es schmeckt so österreichisch, da sollen Leute hier Kaiserschmarrn essen“

Meg visits Salzburg and eats Kaiserschmarrn with chocolate. “It is quite simple, nice and filling. I have heard before that the Schmarrn was something like Pancakes”. Should Kaiserschmarrn go back to Great Britain? “No, I don’t think so. It tastes so Austrian that people should eat it here”

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11th December 2016

This is Beth and Bethan, both students from Leeds in the UK. Having never heard of Kaiserschmarrn prior to Salzburg Beth says “Before I thought it’s going to be acake, something like a Victoria Sponge cake (because it’s called Emperor’s pancake)”. Slightly apprehensive, she decided to go for the Christmas Kaiserschmarrn. “I asked for a recommendation from the guy on the stand. He said plum, but gave me chocolate, so I have chocolate.”

Hier sind Beth und Bethan, beides sind Studenten aus Leeds. Vorher ihre Besuch nach Salzburg, haben sie nie auf Kaiserschmarrn gehöret, also Beth sagt „Vor, Ich dächte, der Schmarrn wie ein Kuchen ist (weil, es Kaiser Schmarrn heißt)“. Etwas vorsichtig, entscheid sie für Weinnachtschmarrn „Ich fragte den Kaiserschmarrn Kellner für ein Empfehlung. Er hat Zwetschken empfehlt, aber hat mir Schokolade gegeben, also habe ich Schokolade ausprobiert.“

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