Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Travelogue:: Monday (continued)

Second visit to the Staatopera was more successful, inasmuch as we found the ticket counter and obtained. Tickets for that evening's perofrmance of â??Sleeping Beautyâ??, a Tchaikovsky ballet. What we really wanted were tickets to â??Nabuccoâ??, but we knew that those were sold as of at. Least 3 weeks ago, so we did not hold out too much hope.

Our main objective was to spend a nice evening out with dinner, theatre, and dessert after the performance. We were not disappointed. The opera house is gorgeous, very much living up to the hype. The perofrmance itself was enjoyable to me, as an amatuer, except for the ever bizarre third act. I really do not understand why Aurora's wedding is attended by the fairy tale creatures who seemed annoying and gimmicky to me.

In any case, we planned to go to Sacher hotel for coffee after the performance. This is fairly famous Vienese hotel, at least insofar as all city guides mention it as a landmark. Certainly the proprietors of many Vienese restaraunts have gotten the â??turn of the centuryâ?? look down, and Sacher got it particularly well. The interior is beatifully decorated withfark red cloth and wood paneling. The atmosphere is formal but relaxed, with attentive and friendly waitstaff. The dessert specialty is the â??sacher tortâ??, which they have been making for 132 years. Sacher tort is definitely worth trying, combining as it does the best qualities of a great desert. It is sweet withoutbeing cloyiing, dense without being heavy, and has a bit of tartness to offset a dark chocolate covering. In short - very enjoyable.
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