New Yorkers looking for a short escape to the country can find it on Avenue C in the East Village, where Seäsonal partners Edi Frauneder and Wolfgang Ban keep the heuriger doors open every night ‘til 2 a.m. While their midtown dining room is stark Vienna high-tech, everything about their village tavern is warm and inviting. The barn wood that panels the walls and ceiling seems to mute the lights, hung from a long tangle of rope above a wide copper bar. The buzz in the room is relaxed and friendly—it’s not unusual to see Edi sitting down on one of the benches to help choose a wine for the crisp plate of pork belly or Ban’s simple and perfect schnitzel. He guided us toward Hirsch’s Gaisberg Riesling from the Kamptal and toward buttery pillows of spätzle with wild mushrooms and brussel sprouts. The wine list imports a few bottles from Germany, France and Spain into an affordable Austrian mix of classic veltliners, rieslings and more esoteric bottles. The most expensive wine on the list is $91, for a magnum of Hajszan’s 2008 Weissleiten Gemischter Satz, a field blend of white varieties from Vienna. There are, in fact, eight gemischter satz on the list, something you won’t see very often, even in a heuriger in Wien.
102 Ave. C, New York, NY
This story appears in the print issue of April 2011.
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