Mozart Minute: Wolfgang the Foodie
In a month full to bursting with concerts, Mozart's waistband might also have stretched a bit during February 1785 from all the fabulous food he enjoyed.
On February 21, Wolfgang Mozart's father, Leopold Mozart, wrote to his daughter, Nannerl, that Wolfgang lunched earlier that day with the noted publisher and book seller Johann von Trattner. Four days earlier, Wolfgang and Leopold enjoyed an apparently quite noteworthy lunch with Wolfgang's Mother-in-law, Cäcilia Weber, and sister-in-law, Sophie Weber.
"I must tell you that the meal, which was neither too lavish nor too stingy, was cooked to perfection," Leopold Mozart wrote. "The roast was a fine plump pheasant; and everything was excellently well prepared." (The Letters of Mozart and His Family, trans. Emily Anderson).
The good eats didn't end there. The following day - what, for the Catholic Mozarts, would otherwise have been a Friday fast day in the normally low-calorie season of Lent - Leopold and Wolfgang made a party of eight for an equally memorable meal.
"Let me tell you at once that there was no thought of a fast-day," Leopold wrote. "We were only offered meat dishes. A pheasant as an additional dish was served in cabbage and the rest was fit for a prince. Finally we had oysters, most delicious glacé fruits and (I must not forget to mention this) several bottles of champagne."
And with the bubbly came the bean juice. Leopold continued, "I need hardly add that everywhere coffee is served."