Engineering Emotion

8th Conference of the International Sports Engineering Association
July 12th to 16th 2010 - Vienna, Austria
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Viennese Fast Food

(15.07.09) New York has got Hot Dogs, Berlin Currywurst, Mexicans take Tacos, Belgians Vlaamse Fritten for a quick snack. In Vienna you visit the Wuerstelstand..
No doubt. Vienna is a stronghold of fantastic cuisine in high-class ambience. But – to be honest – sometimes everyone of us needs a quick snack when strolling around town – no matter what carbohydrates, fats or triglycerides.
All around the world you find fast food. New York got its Hot-Dogs, Berlin is a paradise for Currywurst, Japanese visit a Sushi-Bar for a quick snack, Mexicans grab a Taco for the road, in Asia or Africa fried insects are a delicious little meal. In Vienna you visit the Wuerstelstand when the time scale is tight and the purse is light.
You can't imagine the queues at the inner-city Wuerstelstaende (plural of Wuerstelstand) at 3 a.m. in the morning when those bar-flies and night-owls get hungry. They group around the lights and delihgtful smells of these fast-food pagodes like moths drawn to the flame.
Before I forget, I haven't told you what you can get at a Wuerstelstand. Well: sausages. Nothing but sausages, but sausages in abundance that is. Different in colour taste and ingredients, boiled or grilled, with white or dark bread, with sweet or hot mustard, hot or sweet peppers and so on.
As this is a quite treacherous terrain we present a little guide through the maze of the sausages and everything else you can get at a Wuerstelstand.
Frankfurter sausage, hot mustard (klick to enlarge) Mustard / Sauces
Usually there are two kinds of mustard hot and sweet and they taste as the names indicate. Hot mustard is – yes, you guessed – a little more spicy. Sweet mustard resembles the kind of mustard that is served alongside Bavarian Weisswuerstel and tastes – yes: a little sweet.
Furthermore you can order mayonnaise or tomato ketchup to dip your sausage in.


Normally you can order two different sorts of bread: Brown-bread and plain buns (bread-rolls). Additionally you can have almost any sausage as hot-dog. But watch out, austrian hot-dogs are different from their US-relatives. Whereas in the US you get a sweet, soft bun in Austria it is a longish bread roll, one end is cut off and the sausage, no matter which, is put in together with mustard and whatever sauce is desired.
Burenwurst, on typical plate (klick to enlarge) The sausages (we only mention the classics here)
First of all the Frankfurter sausage. This speciality is known as “Wiener” in many parts of the world and especially in Germany. It is made of beef and pork in Austria it is called Frankfurter. So why is that? Allow me a short side note.

In the late 18th century a german butcher from Frankfurt (Johann Georg Lehner, 1772-1845) moved to Vienna where he created a sausage with a mixture of beef and pork. Unlike in Germany in Austria the mixture of different meat was allowed. Since then Austrian called the sausage Frankfurter because it was created by someone from Frankfurt. Whereas in the rest of the world it was called Wiener because it was invented in Vienna.
Debreziner, sweet mustard, Semmel (klick to enlarge) Burenwurst is the second classical sausage you can get at a Wuerstelstand. Unlike the Frankfurter the sausage meat is chunky and mixed with speck. Just like the Frankfurter it is boiled before serving. Its name comes from the south-african boers (as the sausage was created around the times of the boer-wars) or the dutch word for farmer's sausage (boerewoers).
A sausage that is not only popular in Austria but in all successor-states of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy the Debrecziner is one of the must-haves of a Wuerstelstand. It too consists of chunky pork and beef and is flavored with sweet paprika. Sometimes the Debrecziner is very spicy, sometimes only flavored mildly. The sausage is named after the hungarian town of Debreczen, but has not been created there.
Kaesekrainer, sweet mustard, Semmel - watch the melted cheese inside (klick to enlarge) Last but not least: Kaesekrainer. It is the uncrowned queen of the Wiener Würstelstand. A true speciality which is a really young classic. It is said that the Kaesekrainer was invented in the 1970s or 80s. It is a version of the classical Krainer. The Krainer consists of chunky pork (68%), beef (12%) and speck (20%).

Named after the slovenian region of Krain (slov.: Krajnska) it still is a classic. But about 40 years ago bits of cheese (german: Kaese) was added. And thus you get the classical Kaesekrainer (cheese-Krainer). It is best grilled, the outside gets crispy and in the inside the cheese melts – a dream. But beware: If you ever order a Kaesekrainer hot-dog, be careful. I have seen grown men shed bitter tears because in their appetite they burned their mouths with hot cheese. Better get the sausage sliced on a plate.

A short Wuerstelstand- dictionary

Find a story about Wuerstelstande in town and the 10 favourites of the Falter editorial-staff at the Falter-pages (german only)

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