Thanks Babygadget!

(photo from babygadget.net)

Yay, the English Muffin Animal Alphabet Poster was featured on the Babygadget blog a few weeks back. The sales of the poster have increased recently and I was wondering if we had received some press I wasn't aware of, indeed we had! Check out the write up here, it's very complimentary :)


The German word for hiking is "wandern", and a wandern we did go this weekend. We took a lovely walk through the Lainzer Tiergarten located in the outskirts of Vienna. The tiergarten is home to many wild animals as well as animals like deer and elk in enclosures. We were hoping to see wild boar, however they must have all been huddled somewhere warm because there were none to be found. Here are a few photos from our expidition, enjoy!



A yummy post today in the spirit of holiday indulgences. Xocolat is a lovely chocolate shop in the heart of Vienna full of beautifully packaged chocolates and the rich warm smell of cocoa beans.

The shop is located in the Freyung Passage, open to the outdoors, this long passage is what I would describe as the first mall ;)

This is the one that I bought, I had to judge the chocolate by its package. How cute is that cow?!


I heart Vancouver, although I've never been there...

Orange Betty

Today's Canadian content comes from a few different designers who all call the west coast of Canada home. Here are a few of my favourite things from that rainy city, Vancouver.

Polar bear ponytail

Black pleated shoulder bag

I miss you note card
Best before

Yellow melamine cups


This weekend I...

felt very Christmas-y...

decorated our Christmas tree with friends...

saw a little wildlife...

found and hung Big Chuck's stocking, awwww....

discovered a chocolate shop (more on that later this week)...
went to the Christmas market...
and finally saw some blue sky!
Hope you had a good weekend too!


Where cars go to die

It's Friday again, where did the week go? Only about one week until Christmas.

I hope some of you are getting nice weather out there in internet land. Early winter here in Vienna is usually a mixture of rain and snow, and there is often more rain than snow, and grey, lots of grey skies.

Today's post is a walk through a green graveyard, for cars that is.

"Situated in Kaufdorf, Switzerland exists a peaceful junkyard, holding over 500 classic machines hailing from the 1930s through the 1960s. The government wants it paved but locals want to preserve this history.

Legend has it a car dealer, buying cars for parts, couldn't bring himself to scrap these beauties and began parking them in his yard. The dealer retired in the 70s, passing the business on to his son, who left the cars untouched." original source jalopnik.com

(all photos from Jalopnik.com)
More photos here.

Take it easy.



Wine Gift Ideas

Today's Guerrilla Gourmand post is perfect for the holidays, so grab your pen and be sure to take a few notes, thanks G.G!

(photo from marthastewart.com)

‘Tis the season… to enjoy being with your friends and family! So when you show up at their doorstep to eat their food, why not give your loved ones something they’ll enjoy this holiday season, without breaking the bank?

Giving gifts of wines to friends, family or even to a dinner party host or hostess can be a tricky affair. People have different tastes. Sweet? Dry? Sophisticated and subtle? Or Forward and Bold? If you know their favorite wines, then by all means, make your gift personalized by going to your wine merchant and asking their recommendations on wines based on your host’s favorites.

But let’s face it, most times we don’t know what the recipient would really like. So what should we give? Here are my top suggestions for “giftable” wines:

1) A Champagne or sparkling wine

Who doesn’t love a sparkler? It’s symbolic of celebration and happiness. Most people don’t buy them for regular consumption as a result. I can’t think of a single person who wouldn’t enjoy a champagne or sparkling wine. So, get them one!

The best part of it is, even if they don’t like it, they can always add some orange juice and call it a mimosa to help it go down smoother. (You could also try mango juice with a splash of lime – yummy!)
Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Brut

Some ideas:

a) Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Brut, $55. This is a deliciously clean champagne, with smaller bubbles. It is actually my favorite, because I like my champagnes clean and dependable. It’s a bit of a splurge, but if it’s a very fancy Christmas or New Year’s dinner party, you can impress with this one.

b) Domaine St. Michelle Brut, $10-$15. This is a fabulous sparkling wine from Washington state and highly recommended. During a blind taste test by 500 volunteers, more people preferred this sparkler to a 100-hundred dollar bottle of Dom Perignon! (For the full story, check out “The Wine Trials” by Robin Goldstein, which reports upon this and other surprising findings.)

c) Bernard-Massard Brut, $10. This sparkling wine from the tiny country of Luxembourg is our current favorite for everyday dining, mimosas and celebrations. Likely hard to find, but if you happen across it at this price, try it!

Graham’s Six Grapes Ruby port

2) Fortified wines

Just like most people only open a bottle of bubbly for a celebration, most people do not consider buying themselves a bottle of fortified wine. Fortified wines also seem to be in the realm of “special occasion wines” and therefore are perfect to give as gifts, particularly for those who like to go on wine-and-food-pairing adventures! So, get them a bottle of “sticky” and also give them a pairing suggestion!

a) a bottle of Graham’s Six Grapes Ruby port ($25) and dark chocolate (70% - 80% cocoa content) – a perfect end to a perfect dinner! You can also consider Late-Bottle Vintage (LBV) ruby ports for the same pairing. Chocolate and wine: who can resist?

b) a Galway Pipe tawny port ($30) and dried figs stuffed with toasted almonds is my husband’s favorite pairing. Personally, I think it goes better with a pecan pie! Not all people’s tastes are as sophisticated as his, so reserve the tawny ports for your more adventurous friends. You could also try the same pairings with a tawny from Graham’s or from Fonseca.

c) a Tokaj (pronounced “tow-KAI”, $25) from Hungary and a cheesecake. This will be featured during our upcoming Christmas dinner!

Wine Glasses

3) Wine drinking accessories

a) Wine glasses: I am a firm believer in cheap glassware! Sure, you could buy one Riedel wine glass for $20 and that would make a great present. But give the gift that keeps giving – people will use cheap glasses everyday, and reserve the nice ones for “sometime special”. Go ahead and get them glasses for everyday enjoyment!

Just a couple words of advice: get them clear, big glasses that taper in (i.e. not tulip glasses). Clear, so that they can look at their wines; big, so that they can swish the wine in the glass to release lovely aromas; and ones that taper in, so that they can smell these sweet aromas! A set of six such glasses would cost you less than $10 at IKEA.

b) Screwpull wine opener, $20: This is admittedly our favorite gift to give to newly engaged or wedded couples. It’s an effortless wine opener, where all you need is to turn the corkscrew – no force is required to pull the cork from the bottle. Ingenious design!

Hopefully you have found some inspiration in this list of gift ideas. Feel free to post your favorite wine-inspired gift ideas, too!

Happy Holidays and all the best this season and beyond, from the Guerilla Gourmand!


Hello Kitty!

Introducing the newest addition to our 123Printables family, the Holiday Cat! To view the entire 123Printables collection check out English Muffin's Etsy store.

Pine Cones

(illustrations from The Silva of North America, by Charles Sprague Sargent)

This is the second installment of the botanical illustrations I photographed at the Universität für Bodenkultur here in Vienna. The pine cone illustrations come from a volume of old encyclopedias on the Silva of North America.

Hope you enjoy them as much as I do!