WHERE TO EAT: Chef’s Table by Chef Stephan Zoisl
With a menu solely focused on seasonal produce.
Private chef Stephan Zoisl breaks the standard mould of culinary establishments by offering fluidity on a menu, focusing on seasonal produce rather than fixed recipes on a plate.
His 32-seater restaurant abolished its à la carte offerings and, instead, its menu outlines 28 unadulterated ingredients that change on a daily basis. Diners simply cross out the edible elements they would like to avoid. Once that is done, the experience is completely left in the hands of Zoisl and his team.
High communal tables are strategically placed next to the open kitchen, where Zoisl and his creative partner, Lorenz Raich, are seen commanding their stainless-steel post. Although slightly ruining the element of surprise, it is an orchestra worth watching as the culinary maestros create diverse dishes for the dinner crowd.
“We want [diners] to get to know the ingredients behind the dish, and how they come together on a plate,” explains Zoisl. There are no waiters at the restaurant. Only chefs serve the food to the table so they can share the story of each dish.
The kitchen also houses fresh supplies in cardboard boxes alongside fermented creations. Asian staples such as rice and garlic are sealed in jars or left in special machines to create unique colours and flavours. The sweet and syrupy fermented garlic (better known as black garlic) made its way to our table, presented as dollops next to cured and flamed mackerel.
Other highlights of the night were the sweet and savoury combination of seared Sicilian prawns with burrata cheese; and the wagyu sirloin served with Chanterelle mushrooms and the last batch of Austrian white asparagus, a springtime delicacy.
Patrons can choose between having a three-, six- or eight-course meal, each steered by the availability of fresh or fermented ingredients Zoisl manages to get his hands on.