State College Austrian Bistro

Herwig and His Austrian Bistro

Herwig and His Austrian Bistro

It is 5 a.m. Most people in the town are still asleep. Herwig Brandstatter has started his working day.

He arrives at the restaurant first, earlier than all the young staff, and begins preparing the ingredients and gets everything arranged for the 11:45 a.m. opening.

He cleans the veal and pork and gets them roasted. He cooks a huge pot of smoked pork with rice soup, and has sauerkraut pickled. Then he makes all the prepared food tidily placed in the kitchen, and starts handwriting the menu on the blackboard that changes on a daily basis.

“I don’t want other people to help me this early. I would like to do the stuff myself, ” Herwig said with his European accent. “I have to make sure everything is fresh.”

Thin and fit, the 72-year-old Herwig is wearing a dark-green T-shirt, black shorts, knee-high black socks, and a dark-green apron. He has sparse hair and white beard, but hale and hearty with his quickly walking and talking speed.

Herwig Brandstatter is a man full of energy and enthusiasm who often makes other people laugh. He comes from Igls, a city near Innsbruck, Austria. With a unique style and flavor, his home-owned restaurant located at downtown State College, Herwig’s Austrian Bistro, draws a steady flow of people every day.

The way to settle down

Everything started date back to 1982. At that time, Herwig left his hometown with his family. But things weren’t always go smooth, and they experienced changes for a few times on the family business.

They intended to open a European bakery near Brisbane, Australia. When they stopped by State College to visit friends, they decided to stay and never left since then.

“State College is not so crowded and filled with people of different nationalities, and I am very used to live there, ” Herwig said.

At first, Herwig had an Austrian restaurant near the ski area, Tussey Mountain. Later he ran a travel agency. But both were replaced later by his restaurant as they didn’t make a great profit and take too much of his time.

Voted as No.1 ethnic restaurant in State College for six consecutive years, Herwig’s Austrian Bistro allows customers to taste authentic Austrian home cooking such asBratwurstplatte, meaning homemade all-pork grilled sausages, and Geschnetzeltes, a Swiss specialty dish comprised of thinly sliced pork in a sauce of mushrooms, sour cream, and dill.

The Dining Adventure

With a maximum seating capacity of 54, Herwig’s Austrian Bistro sees a long line during busy hours.

When walking into the restaurant, customers will first notice a board standing on the ground saying: “Do not ask what we recommend. We recommend everything.”

Customers need to decide what to order at the cashier. The blackboard on the wall is displaying all the dishes available for the day.

“We change our menu daily based on what kind of ingredients we have, but only change the feature part, ” said Bernd, Herwig’s son.

He is also proud of another interesting invention. There is a notice on the board warning customers: “Customers have to pronounce the menu in German, or they won’t be able to get the dish.”

Poster (11x17) Austria Archival Photo Poster Print
Home (Poster)
  • Own a piece of history with this iconic image.
  • Licensed reproduction of original photograph from archival collection
  • To preserve authenticity this image has not been retouched.
  • ships quickly and safely in a sturdy protective tube
  • Paper measures 11.00 by 17.00 inches and includes thin white border

Austria, Switzerland, and Sweden

by thundercats

I was able to figure out how to do it but once illegally in Austria working under the table at a ski area. However, i went to a consultant out of the Bay Area and they helped me get a job with a work visa in Switzerland after college but it required you to speak German on the job. Then I started working in Sweden was much easier job to get but only because an employer wanted to hire me and that is the key to getting a work visa.
If you have someone that wants to hire you they can apply with their respective government and apply for your work visa. It only took about 2 weeks after I was hired until I saw my application was accepted

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