Tuesday 17 November 2009

Of Saints And Drunken Monks

The Perfect Cup
of Viennese Melange Coffee
with a very Viennese glass of water
and a Viennese daily, Der Standard.
All so very innocent.

Moments Before
I had walked past this
scaffolded building,
with a Madonna over the entrance
to "Pizza Mari".

Where Else,
But in Vienna
The boundaries
between the Profane and the Holy,
so teasingly close,
you'd not be surprised to see
St. Peter welcoming you in
and Mathew tapping beer
behind the bar,
not to forget the chorus of angels
marching in and singing for supper.

Earthly Delight?
I could not help but smile
when I sat down next door -
at "The Beautiful Pearl -
with a good cup of coffee,
a glass of water,
a newspaper,
and ... a Drunken Capuchin!
Where else,
I thought,
but in Vienna?

Besoffener Kapuziner
An Austrian coffee cake,
made with eggs, sugar and nuts,
and soaked in hot wine
after baking.
Served with whipped sweet cream
or sour cream.
What else?


Photographed Friday Afternoon
by the absolutely sober Merisi
at and near the "Schöne Perle"
13 November 2009

Images and Text
© by Merisi


  1. So, so true, Merisi. In Wien, the lines between the sacred and the profane are so blurred -- I love it.

    Love what you write about Saints Peter and Matthew!

  2. I agree with the comment above.
    In spite of being wildly religious the US lacks
    saints on a day to day basis.

  3. Love it! The coffee, the comments, the unexpected pictures. What a treat for us. Thank you.

  4. Where else but in Vienna sounds like an intersting story or novel title.

  5. A tantalizing juxtaposition indeed!

  6. I can't imagine cake soaked in hot wine and later served with whipped cream or sour cream! But I'm sure it is delicious....

  7. I adore this sentence:
    The boundaries
    between the Profane and the Holy,
    so teasingly close.

    I can't wait to try drunken cake (when I come to Vienna).

  8. That cake look delumptious. Could you email me a little?

  9. Re the name of the pizzeria, Marì:

    There is a Neapoletan song called "Maria Marì" - also known as "Oi Marì" - listen to it sung by Mario Lanza,
    Enjoy! :-)

  10. @ Steph,
    I find it astonishing how similar this relationship is to one between old friends who know how to take a good loving tease. Where else but in Vienna would anyone sing a song about angels enjoying a holiday in their city and have the heavenly creatures ride the streetcar like everybody else? (Imagine drunken angels flying into trees!)

    Was is denn heut nur los,
    was is denn heut nur g'schehn,
    heut san so überfüllt,
    die achtadreiß`ger Wäg`n,
    der Schaffner, den i frag`,
    der schwitzt vor lauter Plag`,
    und sagt mir gleich den Grund für diesen Feiertag.

    "achtadreiß`ger Wäg`n" - Streetcar 38
    Number 38 is the famous line that carries revelers from the city center to the Heurigen - the famous vine bars in the Viennese vineyards - and then safely back home again.

  11. Please forgive me for using famous twice.
    I got carried away. ;-)

  12. Merisi, this is a gem!


  13. It was indeed this mood that I felt while spending a couple of days in Wien earlier this year.

    A wonderful Wednesday for you.

  14. You never fail to charm and entertain, my dear friend!

  15. A lovely vignette about Vienna, Merisi. And that coffee cake...mmm! I want a slice!!

  16. I want the recipe! And what kind of wine is used?

    You're forcing me to eat another bite of the scones that the B & B hosts have left in my room for an early breakfast.

  17. Another gem Merisi. I love that you were perfectly sober photographing all the P words.
    Pretty punny post.

  18. @ Elizabeth,
    it's nice to feel that the Saints are one of us. Well, among us, I guess. ;-)

    @ lakeviewer,
    you are welcome! :-)

  19. @ Charles Gramlich,
    sort of a Viennese "Angels and Saints". ;-)

    @ Arija,
    I am glad you agree! :-)

    @ Sara,
    it isdelicious, you can trust me here. ;-)
    It is sweet treat that is not cloyingly so,
    a bit nutty and spirited ... there we go again ... ;-)

  20. @ Bee,

    Yes, you have to put this cake on your list,
    at the "Schöne Perle"!

    @ Estelle des Chevaliers,
    Sorry, you'll have to ride to Vienna to enjoy this devilishly good morsel! :-)

  21. @ Frances,
    thank you! :-)

    @ robert,
    I am convinced Vienna somehow exists in a further dimension, somewhere between heaven and earth, not quite here, but not there either. It feels like not only traveling through time just by turning a street corner at night, but walking through several centuries all at once. At times this can be quite disconcerting! ;-)

    May your Wednesday be filled with special moments!

    @ Sandi McBride,
    thank you! :-)

  22. @ Feronia,
    thank you!
    I'd love to have one right now myself. ;-)

    @ Vicki Lane,
    I shall sit down and translate it!
    What wine? Only the best, red or white, I prefer red.
    I bet the scones were delicious!
    (I brake for scones!)

    @ Shadow,
    I imagine that this simple cake was thrown together in some farmer's kitchen, with the ingredients at hand. With work never ending, sweet were far and few between, but this one lends itself to be prepared ahead of time and then brought back to deliciousness by pouring the hot wine over it.

  23. @ photowannabe,
    you made me laugh out loud -
    the "P" words a coincidence, or so I thought (do I spot divine intervention here?):
    I actually started out with that magnificent large green "P" I had told you about, only to end up with this post. Inspiration is a funny thing, it comes in the most unexpected ways. I won't promise, I have that "P" right at the top of my blog folder, who knows, maybe there's a post there for today. Or tomorrow. ;-)

  24. I think this is a beautifully constructed post. I have tried to read the headline in Der Standard but it defeats me :-)

  25. I want to have coffee w u in Vienna Merisi.

  26. What else? George Clooney, may be?


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