Austria’s New Government

What does Austria’s political future look like?

Austria’s political landscape in the past

For the last few decades, Austria’s government was comprised of a coalition of the top two parties, the Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP) and the Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPÖ). The political landscape included a slew of other parties, with the most dominant ones being the left Green Party (Die Grünen) and the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ).

 

The ÖVP won the 2017 election, having the greatest number of seats and followed by a widely publicized national and international outcry, formed a coalition with the right-wing populist FPÖ.

 

The scandal in 2019

On May 27th 2019, Austria´s chancellor Sebastian Kurz from the Austrian People’s Party was removed from office in a vote of no confidence among legislators after a secretly recorded video was published. In this critical video the FPÖ’s leader Heinz Christian Strache was caught offering political favors to a young woman they believed to be the niece of a wealthy Russian oligarch, advising her how to increase Russia´s influence in Austria. Headlines were dominating the news all over the world and Austria had to prepare for a new election in the fall of 2019.

 

Re-election in fall of 2019

However, the scandal of the so called “Ibiza-affair” had not affected former chancellor Kurz majorly during the re-elections, whereas right party had to take a big hit on votes. Previous FPÖ leader Strache had to resign from office as he was criticized widely. Sebastian Kurz’s party ÖVP once again won the election with 34.55% of all votes followed by the SPÖ with 23.89%. 3rd came the FPÖ with 17.20% despite losing about 10% compared to the former election. On the other side, Die Grünen benefited greatly from this scandal, but also from the world-wide more traction-gaining climate movement, finishing with 14.08%. The remaining percentage points were split among the NEOS (8.44%), the JETZT (1.04%) and other parties (0.80%).

 

Coalition & goals for the new government

Recently, the news came out that the ÖVP decided to start a new coalition with Die Grünen. Now what does that mean for Austria’s future? On paper, it´s a significant political shift since the left party Die Grünen will replace the right FPÖ in this coalition. The coalition deal includes that Die Grünen will head 4 ministries, among other things, the environmental and justice portfolios. On the other side, the peoples party will hold onto the rest of the Ministries, including the Interior, Defense and Finance Ministries. The influence of Die Grünen can be seen with environmental goals. Austria will seek to be carbon neutral by 2040 and put a price on CO2 emissions. Beginning 2030, all of Austria’s electricity is to be produced by renewable energy sources and air-travel will become more expensive in order to make railway transportation more attractive. Also to mention, despite the tax cuts, the new government doesn’t plan on new debt. Conservative priorities include plans to expand a headscarf ban for girls under 14-years-old.

 

Kurz mentioned in a statement that this is an ideal coalition because he believes he brought together the best of both worlds. At the end of the day, such a coalition hasn’t been seen before in Europe, so therefore the world is watching and curious how chancellor Sebastian Kurz will get along with Werner Kogler the head of Die Grünen, only time will tell.

 

Watch the videos from interim-Chancellor Brigitte Bierlein:

Upcoming events at Schweiger Ranch

A very precious spot in Colorado has strong Austrian roots: The Schweiger Ranch, a revived homestead founded by Austrian immigrants back in the 18 hundreds. You can read more about the history on our blog.

 

As we approach the holiday season, you can visit the Schweiger Ranch to attend their signature event:

December 7, 2019 – Austrian Christmas & Christkindl Market | 1:00-5:00 pm

The Schweiger Ranch Austrian Christmas & Christkindl Market celebrates the cultural heritage of the Austrian brothers who homesteaded Schweiger Ranch in 1874. There will be fun for the whole family! Visit Santa Claus and his real reindeer, have your face painted, enjoy story time and crafts making, or take a horse drawn carriage ride. There will be giveaway baskets, wreath making workshops for the adults (for purchase), an Austrian band, Austrian food and a free cup of hot cocoa or cider to keep you cozy. Stop by the Christkindl Market for presents that will add a local handcrafted touch to your gift giving. The event culminates with the awe and wonder of the annual holiday tree lighting.

If you cannot make this event, come by the Ranch for the display of holiday lights, daily from 5:00-8:00 pm from December 7, 2019 – January 26, 2020.

If you are more a history buff, then the self-guided tours of the historic house and buildings might be more up your alley. Offered during the monthly open houses from 1:00-5:00 pm on the 3rd Saturday of the each month from April– December.

If you want to get into the holiday spirit, also bake some holiday cookies at home. Get recipes of typical Austrian cookies such as Kokosussserln, Vanillekipferln and Linzeraugen on our blog.

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Where to find Austrian/German Food & Drinks in Colorado

Missing your favorite Austrian or German chocolate? Or even some special tea that is hard to get here in the us (for example “Hagebuttentee”)? Most expats will return from their vacation in their home country with luggage full of chocolate and other goodies. If you don’t want to wait until your next trip, check out our list below with some of the local stores that stock Austrian and German food.

We are striving to update this list on a continuous basis for all the Austrian newcomers who desperately are missing their favorite foot items! So please let us know if you know of some store that should be added!

And while you are looking forward to this shopping trip, don’t forget to check out our blog post about restaurants in Colorado that offer German or Austrian food.

This list was started by brainstorming on the Facebook page Austrians in Denver and Colorado – thank you all for your input!

 

Stores:

Wimberger’s Old World Bakery & Deli

2321 Bott Avenue, Colorado Springs, CO 80904
Part butcher, part bakery – it will make you happy going there (Fleischkäsesemmel anyone?) You find a big assortment of typical German delicatessen and also a variety of German sausages, deli meat, cheese and bread (Laugenstangeln!).

Cost Plus World Market

To find locations or shop online click here.
It is a chain of specialty/import retail stores, selling home furniture, decor, curtains, rugs, gifts, apparel, coffee, wine, craft beer, as well as several international food products. With almost 300 stores across 35 US states, this is a safe bet to get international food items not far from your home. The Austrian assortment includes Darbo Marmelade, Manner Schnitten, but other German favorites like Maggi, Haribo, Leibnitz Kekse, Rittersport Chocolate or Hengstenberg Gherkins will make you happy!

Edwards Meats

12280 W 44th Ave, Wheat Ridge, CO 80033
Originally a family-owned butcher shop with hand-cut meat, game & charcuterie it also sells a variety of German food. If you are looking to spice up your sausages with Curry ketchup or German Mustard and Horseredish you came to the right place. You can also find a variety of pudding mixes, soups and more, all imported from Europe.

Rheinländer Bakery

5721 Olde Wadsworth Blvd. Arvada, CO 80002
Touting itself as “Colorado’s best German bakery” offering an abundance of cakes, tarts and the like. It’s very similar to a typical “Konditorei” and you’ll satisfy your sweet tooth for sure.

Andy’s Meat Market

2915 E Platte Ave, Colorado Springs, CO 80909
Family Owned and Operated Since 1952 Meat Market in Colorado Springs, CO. We heard that there is a selection of German imported food, but please let us know what kind to update this listing.

Kneisel & Anderson

511 6th St, Georgetown, CO 80444
It’s the oldest store in Georgetown with roots from Austria and Sweden! You can find specialty and imported Scandinavian, German, English, Swiss, and Swedish foods along with imported cheeses, European chocolates, and Colorado products.

 

Catering options:

Chef Neuhold from Styria Catering

Chef Neuhold is well known in the Denver area and can be found at various Christkindlmarkets or Bierfests. His usual menu includes Wiener Schnitzel and Salmon. Contact him if you want to have him cater a party Austrian-style!

Andy Grogger from Andy’s Kitchen

Andy can be found at Oktoberfests and he is also offering catering. He makes his own Speck, Leberkäse, Grammeln and such.

 

Random finds:

 

We heard about a few spots in Colorado where Austrian goodies can be purchased, but only on a very limited basis.

Total Wine & More

Denver 3905 East Evans Ave. Denver, Colorado, 80210 stocks Manner and Stiegl!

Brewing Market Coffee

It’s a local coffee shop with three locations in Boulder and you can get Ritter chocolate and Manner Schnitten!

Peppercorn

1235 Pearl St, Boulder, CO 80302
We found Darbo Elderberry syrup (Holundersaft) and some Darbo Marmelade. Unsure if this was a temporary offering or you can always find it there.

Applejack

3320 Youngfield St, Wheat Ridge, CO 80033
Has a really big selection of Austrian wine’s and liquor!

Online shopping option:

If you are more into online shopping, try this online store: www.austriansupermarket.com

 

As this is an ever-changing and growing list, please leave a comment if you happen to know of any addition to this list!

Restaurants in Colorado offering Austrian/German Food

One of the hardest things of being an expat is that you miss all the good food and drinks you actually grew up with. Some are just incredibly delicious, others are giving you this special “Heimatgefühl” – this special fond memory that you have when you think about where you come from or grew up – expats will know what I’m talking about here!

But, do not despair, there are plenty of ways to get your “fix” here in Colorado.

This list of restaurants that offer Austrian/German type food was compiled by brainstorming on the Facebook page Austrians in  Denver and Colorado – thank you all for your input!

Denver area:

Chinook Tavern

6380 S Fiddlers Green Cir, Greenwood Village, CO 80111
Located on Fiddlers Green Circle in Greenwood Village it’s chef & owner Markus comes from German. Modern takes on schnitzel, fondue & more in an art-splashed space with a coffee bar & patio. Pretty big space with lots of events going.

Bohemian Beer Garden

Located on 13th Street in Boulder it’s a rustic, Czech-style place offering a wide beer menu & traditional eats, plus live music & Karaoke. Famous for its variety of German beers like Warsteiner, Paulaner & Koenig Ludwig, Pilsner Urquell. Go there to find your Bavarian Spätzle, Curry-Wurst and Jäger Schnitzel. Oh, and don’t forget the Apple Strudel!

German Eatery

245 S Harlan St, Lakewood, CO 80226
Located on Harlan Street in Lakewood. It’s a small eatery, similar to a German ”Imbisstube” and sits about 20 people. Gaby is a happy-go-to lady with great sense of humor. She offers home-style cooked meals and cakes.

Golden Europe Restaurant

6620 Wadsworth Blvd, Arvada, CO 80003
Located on Wadsworth Blvd. in Arvada. It’s a mix of Polish, German & Czech dishes on the menu with typical family recipes with an old-county vibe.

Helga’s German Restaurants/Deli

14197 E Exposition Ave, Aurora, CO 80012
A European vibe mixes with classic German fare & plentiful beer at this longtime restaurant/deli. Helga is serving Rouladen, Sauerbraten and lots more of typical German food.

The Mountains:

Almresi

298 Hanson Ranch Rd, Vail, CO 81657
It’s a fairly new place run by a German family offering typical German and Austrian food, such as Schweinshaxe, Kaiserschmarrn, Brotzeitbrett and Käsefondue.

Alpenrose

100 E Meadow Dr STE 25, Vail, CO 81657
This German-Austrian restaurant established in 1974 also serves housemade pastries plus beer & wine. It was taken over by the same German family end of September 2018 that also runs the Almresi!

Pepi’s

231 Gore Creek Dr, Vail, CO 81657
Pepi’s is the restaurant that is part of the Hotel Gasthof Gramshammer, established in the 60s by Pepi, a famous Austrian ski racer and his wife. Wiener Schnitzel, Jägerschnitzel, as well as the typical Käsespätzle Allgäuer Art are waiting for you.

Swiss Chalet

20 Vail Rd, Vail, CO 81657
Vail is located inside the Sonnenalp Hotel and offers traditional European Cuisine. According to their website, Authentic regional hearty favorites such as Schnitzel and delicious fondues make the Swiss Chalet a delectable dining experience rich in flavor and aroma.

Blue Plate in Avon

48 E Beaver Creek Blvd, Avon, CO 81620
Relaxed American eatery serving traditional bites with a European twist in bright, modern surrounds. They call their cuisine a melting pot_ and you find New England style fish n’ chips next to Linguini Bolognese and Austrian Apple Strudel.

Colorado Springs area:

Uwe’s German Restaurant

5913, 31 Iowa Ave, Colorado Springs, CO 80909
From the typical Sauerbraten, Wiener Schnitzel to Bratwurst ad Frikadelle Uwe’s German Restaurant seems to be an affordable way to get your German food “fix”

Edelweiss Restaurant

34 E Ramona Ave, Colorado Springs, CO 80905
It’s fairly big restaurant serving authentic old world German cuisine. With an impressive selection of Cakes and tartes (Linzer Torte and Sacher Torte included!) and a nice Biergarten it’s a great option to hang out on a Sunday afternoon. But you’ll get German specials including Weinbergschnecken! (Escargots) Flammkuchen and Kartoffel Pfannkuchen.

The Little Imbiss

773 Garden of the Gods Rd, Colorado Springs, CO 80907
With owner Patty, hailing from Berlin, you can find a German food you typicaly find in an Imbiss in Germany or Austria! Döner Kebab, Schnitzel Brötchen and Curry wurst are ready for you together with a Streussel kuchen!

 

As this is an ever-changing and growing list, please leave a comment if you happen to know of any addition to this list! We would love to know it and update this list.