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Far from crispy Wiener schnitzel, a Viennese farmer prepares for the next food revolution. Andreas Gugumuck, a former IT specialist and boxer, has fast turned his snail farm in the south of Vienna into a hub for sustainable farming.
The farm raises Wiener schnecke, or “Viennese snails.” Visitors can tour the farm, participate in “snail rearing” workshops, and enjoy the fruits of Gugumuck’s labors at the shop or bistro. The former includes jarred snails as well as snail livers and caviar. The bistro serves specialized snail dinners three Fridays each month (it seats only 28, so reservations are recommended). The snail farmer himself is usually around to guide guests through the various courses.
Back in the 18th century, snails were a popular food in Vienna, which ran its own snail market just behind St. Peter’s church. Now they form not only a part of Austria’s culinary heritage, but may hold a promising place in its future: To firmly position snails as a resource-saving alternative to meat, Gugumuck collaborates with agricultural and food scientists and speaks at sustainable food events.
Know Before You Go
A guided tour costs € 19 (about $21) per person and includes a tasting of gratinated snails with herb butter and a glass of wine or a nonalcoholic drink.