We might „only“ run a small three-star hotel with a few rooms, a restaurant and a bar; but we know that what we lack in size we make up for in hospitality, and the personal relationship with our guests. So naturally, the Concierge places great significance on his personal appearance – even holes in his socks are a no-go (even when his feet are hidden behind the front desk all day).
Grandma might knit great socks, the thick wool kind that keep your feet warm even in the coldest of winters at home or on the ski slope, but for the work behind a reception desk, they are unfortunately unsuitable.
So today the Concierge is off to buy socks. The Merano Lauben should have everything he needs. On a cold, gloomy day such as today, the city is packed – which makes navigating the narrow streets of Merano hard as the Concierge fights through the crowds. Eventually the right store is found and 10 pairs of socks are easily acquired. Nothing stands in the way of just returning home. A quick one today eh?
But at the end of the arcades, the cathedral church bells of St. Nicholas can be heard ringing through the streets. It’s twelve o’clock, maybe we should stay for lunch?
We decide on the inn “Wirtshaus zur Blauen Traube” (“Blue-Grape Inn''). A historical inn in Merano, a cultural and gastronomical heritage site.
We chose the inn in part because our butcher, Metzger Mair, used to supply the Blaue Traube with local beef.
Our lunch consists of two gnocchi variations, one with Hokkaido squash and cheese, and the other one with cheese fondue, cream spinach and Speck; followed by pike perch in broccoli foam, leek, capers, raisins and grapes; and a roasted venison shoulder with red cabbage and apple, potatoes and a juniper berry sauce.
For dessert we have a reinterpretation of Tarte Tatin, also known in Paris as Tarte du chef or Tarte des demoiselles Tatin, made from South Tyrolean apples. While in reality a typical french cake, it could also be a South Tyrolean invention, as its ingredients come in abundance in South Tyrol.
The young but experienced and well traveled chef Christoph Huber responsible for this delicious lunch attended various culinary schools of haute cuisine and learned from many internationally renowned master chefs. In the dining room, young Franziska Mittelsteiner, called Franzi, is in charge: she is responsible for the wine in the Blaue Traube.
The meal was accompanied by a Pinot Blanc Muschelkalk from Abraham, Pinot Noir Gottardi and a Gewürztraminer Terminum.
Let us hope our socks don’t last too long, so we’ll get another chance to buy some more soon…