In a pandemic pivot that now appears to be an annual custom, final week the venerable Yorktown butchers Schaller & Weber reopened their out of doors ski lodge restaurant Hütte, serving a menu of cold-weather Austrian classics below the watchful eyes of all kinds of taxidermied beasts. There are classic ski-gear posters, antlers, ice skates, pinecones, evergreen boughs, twinkling lights, cute little owls, blankets upon request, and a couple of dozen heaters blasting down from the uncovered plywood beams above.
It is an impressed transformation of the constructing’s again patio (you enter by way of the sausage bar Schaller’s Stube, moderately than the butcher store correct), however final winter, in these pre-vaccine instances, the virtually solely enclosed tented area felt method too indoorsy for me. Now that many people are snug consuming inside once more, nonetheless, I jumped on an invite to take a look at the area final weekend, excited to gorge on sport meat and cheese fondue.
Sadly, the sport is gone from the menu, however they push the fondue arduous right here. And it is costly: a heat pot of cheese and a board laden with ready-to-dip accouterments will run you $70 minimal for the desk; it is $35 an individual, however it’s important to get it for a minimum of two. The cheese itself is lush and creamy, barely sharp, and undoubtedly a bit boozy. The board appears to be like festive and is enjoyable to eat, with three sorts of sausage, standard-issue uncooked greens, and a few welcome cornichons and apple slices. However actually, our favourite factor right here was the hunks of toasted Balthazar rye bread—I might love a lower-priced model of this, bread and cheese solely, maintain the carrots and pea pods.
At our host’s urging, we had the Beef Goulash Soup to begin (properly seasoned, the meat fairly tender) and the Tyrolean Cheese Dumpling, which was scrumptious in that particular method huge balls of buttery tacky dough may be. Good transfer, too, to nest the factor in a mound of pickled cabbage, with bits of chewy speck strewn about. Different choices up high embrace Pumpkin Soup, Vegetable Spätzle, and a mix-and-match number of cheese and charcuterie, the latter, in fact, from Schaller & Weber’s huge larder subsequent door.