To do something for a living, you need to have fun, and the dynamic duo leading the culinary team at Carpe Diem Finest Fingerfood have been having fun together since 2005.
Carpe Diem started as a restaurant focused just on fingerfood, and as the loyal following grew and word spread far and wide, the restaurant expanded to its current offering, which includes a cafe, restaurant, lounge and terrace. The expansive exterior of the restaurant hints at the various dining experiences within.
Thomas and Alex greeted us warmly, and we could see that Thomas had printed our questions beforehand in anticipation of our conversation, an effort we are the most grateful for when interviewees are prepared! The waiter had attentively prepared coffee and tea for us as we waited. We settled into one of the cozy, plush booths in the upstairs lounge as we engaged the dynamic chef duo in conversation.
We asked the chefs where they get their inspiration to continually update their own menus and the response was to be an avid eater, all around Salzburg and internationally.Alex had recently gone on a roadtrip in a camper through Italy, from Venice to Rome and South Tyrol - exploring new flavours to integrate into their own menu. The pair noted that they receive many tourists in the restaurant, encouraging them to compose their dishes with international flavours to give their guests a taste of something familiar yet innovative.
As we wrapped our conversation, we were treated to a marvellous selection of dishes from their fingerfood menu. We started with the signature beef tartare cone and the seared hamachi cone with a yuzu spread. The concept of serving dishes inside of small cones had been the cornerstone of the restaurant experience since the beginning, allowing for a more enticing culinary experience where guests can mix and match depending on their appetite and mood.
The cones are meant as snack bites to be paired with drinks and conversation, but the chefs discovered a slight problem at the beginning, where cones served with hot food inside were getting soggy as guests chatted away before enjoying their food. They fixed this problem by designing a special "waffle-cone" with an ingredient that would keep the cone crispy for 15 minutes even with hot food inside, delivering hot bites in a tasty, sturdy vessel.
Needless to say, the restaurant patrons embraced this innovative concept, and loved that it meant these tasty cones can be enjoyed any time of day without overwhelming one's appetite.
After the superb lineup of cones, the chefs were also kind enough to offer us a taster of their mouflon dish off the restaurant menu. Perfectly cooked with pink throughout and juices retained within every bite, served with healthy vegetables such as the sweetly seasoned eggplant with tart goat cheese and tiny couscous bites.
We capped our meal with a dainty dessert, the mango tart served with mango sorbet and mango cream. The refreshing and tangy taste was the perfect end note for a full menu.
Our experience at Carpe Diem Finest Fingerfood was phenomenal - the creative menu, numerous dining options under the same roof, and attentive staff made it an evening to remember. It's easy to see why this restaurant has become a staple for both locals and tourists alike to catch up over brunch, dinner, coffee, drinks, or a delicious slice of cake - the choice is up to you. The menu is updated on a monthly basis to utilize the best seasonal ingredients, so even if you are a returning visitor, you can expect to find new eats to satisfy your palette.
Getreidegasse 50, 5020 Salzburg, Austria