A simple recipe perfected over 180 years is just one of the elements in the process of making a great chocolate cake.

Back in 1832 Franz Sacher was commissioned by Prince Wenzel von Metternich to create a special dessert for several important guests. This was the first instance of the now famous Sacher Torte.

The original recipe is rather simple, and hasn’t changed significantly over the years. It is basically a dense chocolate cake with some layers of apricot jam and a dark chocolate coating.

But you have to see how they do it at the Hotel Sacher.

The care. The pride. Those humble yet fit-for-purpose tools.

Wonderful.

A portion of Sacher Torte

Beyond the actual Sacher Torte

Those who have tried it know it is a great piece of confectionary. It’s smooth. Tasty. It’s not too heavy and not too light.

But to me that’s not the thing.

From the Finura point of view, the actual cake is the consequence of a finely tuned process. If you watch attentively, you can see various elements that really highlight the experience and control that the chefs have.

What are those?

Have you seen the brass and copper mixing bowls? You can tell a couple thousand cakes have been mixed there. It is my belief that worn-out tools share their users’ souls.

Senior woman with an old mixing bowl

Did you notice the supporting base they put the bowls on? That little ring that helps tilt and hold the bowl in place? Accessories such as those see the light when smart people clock countless hours of work.

How about the way they add the chocolate coating? The chef pours exactly the right amount of it and spreads it with precise, controlled movements.

And what can we say about the packaging and delivery? Each step in the process involves extraordinary attention to detail, but it’s the final stages that really raise the standard.

One final thought

It’s the joy.

Picture of an italian guitar maker

Observing a seasoned craftsman in action often gives away a sense of delight.

My guess is that it is a mixture of satisfaction and pride.

Something that surfaces when…

  1. You know your trade very well, meaning you know each and every way in which a task can go right or wrong, and…
  2. You are doing everything right!

I think that the glimpse of a smile you see in one of the chefs’ face is a telltale sign for this state of mind.

The joy of Sacher Torte mastery.