Tag Archives: hops

Lorenz, Czech restaurant with Austrian flavors

Restaurant Lorenz, a dream come true for Czech & Slovak couple

After working as a chef at a Viennese restaurant for 30 years, Jan Laurencik opened a restaurant in beautiful Kromeriz with wife Eva on this wintry day at the end of January.

Having a restaurant in Kromeriz has been a lifelong dream for this enterprising couple, Jan & Eva. Jan is from Slovakia, Eva is a lifelong resident of Kromeriz in Czech Republic.

The fusion of the Austrian dishes with Czech is apparent in the entrees such as the featured Old Viennese pork knee on a skewer with red cabbage sauerkraut, hot pepper and bread, served on a plank and accompanied by Bernard beer.

“It is delicious with a well-balanced tangy taste of the sauerkraut,” said Emma Palova. Palova visited Kromeriz and the local restaurants many times. “I love this Moravian specialty. The beer washes down the grease from the knee. It’s finger-licking good.”

The weekly menu features daily specials with soup included and a choice of four  entrees ranging in price from 85 kc to 135 kc. KC stands for Czech currency, Czech crowns.

The restaurant/cafe menu is complete with a piece of Vienna; that is the Sachr Torte. The Sachr chocolate cake has been the most famous cake in the world since 1832, and the original recipe remains a well-kept secret.

The featured coffee is the Vienna melange with Mozart’s kugel confection. The large selection of desserts also features traditional Czech “pohar” cup with fruits, whipped cream and ice cream.

And of course the dessert menu would not be complete without the famous apple strudel, home to both Austria and Czech Republic.

Congratulations to my friends Eva Larencikova and her husband Jan to the opening of the Lorenz Restaurant & Kavarna in beautiful Kromeriz, Czech Republic.

Note: Eva and I met on a “Hops” train to Zatec in 1982. We spent three weeks in the Bohemian hops fields picking hops in order to obtain a university credit from the Technical University of Brno. The hops brigade was mandatory under the socialist educational system. Hops in all forms including liquid as in beer, have cemented our lifetime long distance friendship. The pork knee on a plank with beer was our favorite dish during our student years in Brno, because it was good and cheap. The distance across the Atlantic Ocean has changed nothing in our relationship.

You don’t need a Reservation to  this Czech Viennese cafe. 

http://www.ulorenze.cz/

Featured photo: Courtesy of Lorenz Restaurant & Kavarna

Smoked pork knee on a skewer with red sauerkraut and bread served on a plank.

Copyright (c) 2018. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Czechs&beer II

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Beer brewing has a long tradition in Czech Republic. Most breweries started hundreds of years ago.

-continued from May 31

Note: In my memoir “Greenwich Meridian” I write about my unique experience from a hops brigade in former Czechoslovakia.

After a long train ride, followed by a long bus ride we finally got to the hops farm in the middle of nowhere and near Czech army bases in Western Bohemia. We were lodged in barracks. There were 16 of us sleeping on bunk beds in one room without closets.

We had all our belongings under the bunk beds. So, three weeks of hell began. The second day, the water stopped running, and nobody knew how to fix it. The third day the room started to smell from the stinky shoes and clothes soaked with sweat from the hops fields.

We were divided into two shifts; I worked the second, while my friend Eva worked the first. She worked in the fields tearing down the long prickly hop canes. I worked in the barn hanging them up, so the green small cones could be mechanically harvested.

Sometimes when the shifts changed we met in the fields with Eva to talk and read Agricultural News. Once a week, a pub on wheels came to the farm. The drinking age in Czech Republic and Europe is 18. We always missed it because we had to work. We were directly in the area where best beer is made, and we couldn’t even sample it.

The closest general store was five miles away, and it was badly stocked.
The food on the farm consisted of mainly meatless dishes such as sweet dumplings with marmalade or golden “buchticky” small donut-like pastries covered with unidentifiable yellow sauce “shodo.” One day we came to the cafeteria, and there was a sign that the chef was dismissed because he was mixing salad with his hands.

On the few occasions when we did have meat on Sundays, we had to get up at four o’clock in the morning and peel massive amounts of potatoes for a mashed side dish. Since, then I hate peeling potatoes. There were approximately 400 students on the farm.

On one precious day off, we hitched a ride to the spa town of Karlovy Vary also known as Carlsbad in Western Bohemia. Finally, we could enjoy a beer, a dessert at the famed Elephant patisserie, and shop for a souvenir.

The next day, it was back to slavery again at the hops farm. To somehow pacify us, the management, whoever that was, organized morning dances for those who worked the second shift. The work week was seven days a week 10 hours a day.

I lost 20 kilograms because I refused to eat the meatless dishes. My friend Eva ate them out of desperation, and gained 20 kilograms. The life at the barracks with minimal space consisted of discussions on the bunk beds since there were no chairs or tables.

“What are you doing?” somebody asked a girl who flipped her position so her feet were in the headboard on the bunk bead.
“I am tricking the flies so they don’t buzz around my head,” she said. “I’d rather have them around my feet.”
I remember the long line to get paid 400 crowns for more than three weeks of labor. We missed the hops train back home, because we were not quite done yet with all the fields, and helping out others.

We dragged on a charter bus back to the region of Moravia, and I could not believe this happened.
Those who didn’t go to the mandatory hops brigade ended up going to cotton or chicken farms.
Czechs call hops, that are exported to Japan, their green gold. Well they are pieces of gold bought by the exploitation and sweat of others.

Copyright © 2013 story and photo by Emma Palova