Most tourists are suckers now and then and I’m one of them.
You’re in Vienna, right, so you’ve got to eat a real schnitzel. And so many guide books and internet sites recommend Figlmuller, where schnitzels overlap the plate, and have been made there since the Middle Ages or somesuch.
I read recently in the Australian press a longish piece on schnitzels in Vienna. Figlmuller was tops. When is travel writing going to get honest? When are travel writers going to tell the truth? (The answer is never, for sound commercial reasons. But that’s another story.)
Let me tell you about Siglmuller’s schnitzel. Yes, it overlaps the plate, but it has the taste of a pizza container … That’s the cardboard box the pizza comes in.
It’s made of pork, not veal, and if you want the veal one you have to pay half-a-dozen euros more. It’s not much thicker than a 100-euro banknote, its enveloping batter several times stouter if, happily, drained of fat.
And that’s it. And you pay about 13 euros for the privilege of eating a Figlmuller schnitzel, and I suspect the whole dish — including its single lemon wedge — costs the restaurant perhaps two or three euros. If that! If someone out the back is rolling out pork fleisch to schnitzel thickness, several of his or her colleagues are churning out 100-euro notes even thinner.