The flavour of juniper
GIN DAYS at the Boutique hotel Träumerei # 8 & restaurant Auracher Löchl
The Auracher Löchl is open every day for 600 years. Whereas in the past its guests were mainly travelling salesmen and “summer tourists” who stopped in Kufstein, today they simply want to spend a good time in the Tyrolean mountains. And the Auracher Löchl is the best starting point to discover Kufstein.
Arriving in a new town. Stepping out of the train and leaving its station. Looking around. Sighting the fortress Kufstein just in front of me. I am crossing the Inn bridge, heading towards the town and looking for the hotel as well as the restaurant Auracher Löchl. On the right hand side you find the Römerhofgasse, which is considered as the smallest old town in Austria - the first world record for the next few hours. In the narrow alley I notice a small bridge connecting two houses: On the river banks you find the Boutique hotel Träumerei # 8 and opposite the restaurant Auracher Löchl. "The smallest bridge restaurant" in the world is located in between - the second world record.
I spend my GIN DAYS in the river and mountain deluxe room: Bed and breakfast for two nights and the opportunity to learn more about the specialties of the house. I don’t want to wait any longer and leave the room for gin tasting. The in-house bar STOLLEN 1930 is deeply hidden in the fortress rock. The tunnel was carved into the rock long before the invention of the fridge. The bar is also registered in the Guinness Book of Records: with over 1000 different varieties it’s the world's largest Gin Gallery - the third world record. "What mood are you in today?", I am asked by the bartender and at first I don’t know what to answer. The young man gives me general information about origin and production of the gin and draws my attention to the large range of flavours: From spicy to delicate everything is possible. Scents of juniper, herbs, citric or strawberry? Among local products such as the "Mountain Gin" from Ellmau, the gin from the distillery Stix in Thiersee or the "Isel ° Gin" from Matrei in East Tyrol the large gin collection includes more than 1000 different bottles from all over the world. I get curious and taste four different gins and tonics - it's amazing that one and the same drink can taste so different! Full of enthusiasm I decide to set up a gin bar at home.
For the gin tasting they serve Tyrolean tapas consisting of a selection of bacon, spreads, pork greaves spread, and Pane Rustico: it is at that moment I realize I am in Kufstein. The tasting continues in the restaurant where they serve Tyrolean tapas as a main course consisting of a variety of Tyrolean delicacies. In addition to “Tiroler Gröstl”, “Käsespätzle”, “Schlutzkrapfen”, and “Pressknödel” you will find classics of Austrian cuisine on the menu such as a Viennese escalope or a veal goulash. Having enjoyed the dessert, I decide to save my energy for the next day: After an excellent meal I happily return to my room and I fall into the soft bed of the label “Boxpringbett” manufactured by Schramm.
The next morning I am again spoiled by a most delicious breakfast buffet: I am enjoying my breakfast in the morning, drinking Prosecco on the terrace by the river and almost forget that there is another highlight on my agenda: I want to visit the Kufstein fortress, located on a rock. From there you have a magnificent view over the gorgeous town of Kufstein. I stroll through the streets before returning to the hotel. On the second evening, the chief cook Daniel Unterganschnigg prepares the most delicious meals, especially in terms of meat: The Auracher Löchl has been well known as a steakhouse for 10 years. They serve a 300 gram steak from the KSF-Argentina-Grill with herb butter and spicy tomato salsa. The juicy meat is served with side-dish tapas: seasonal market vegetables, corn on the cob and farmhouse fries. After dinner, I re-immerse myself in the atmosphere of the 1930s. Again, I am happy to get informed on the different gin types while enjoying a few drinks in the Stollen bar. I also like the typical swing music bringing back the flair of the past. I am a bit sad when leaving the bar. But I promise: I’ll be back.