Café Rüdigerhof, 2011
The Swedish band Fredrik had to cut their way through snow flurry to the art nouveau building Rüdigerhof. For an offstage set in the café the trio from Malmö is pretty well equipped. But when Fredrik plugs in the keyboard, the landlady gets suspicious. Does she think that this is going to be too loud? Nope. In her view the amp might simply use too much electricity. However, Fredrik Hultin and his bandmates Anna Moberg and Ola Lindefelt are not deterred by her bad temper. They go for a forceful rendition of “Ner”. Fredrik’s haunting singing is entwined by twisty vocal harmonies and the song is finishing off with a trumpet part. We could only think of this being an impressive performance that might also have pleased everyone else around. Yet the landlady is far from being appreciative and is set on charging us money for plugging in the amp and using her electricity. We capitulate. As candid and enjoyable your cause might be, some people just won’t open up.
Although the area around Naschmarkt has a lot of interesting buildings to offer for Art Nouveau lovers, Rüdigerhof is a particular gem among them. Erected in 1902, Rüdigerhof catches your eye with the simple, yet rich-in-detail-beauty of Oskar Marmorek’s architecture and the very exposed location just next to the Wienfluss. The ground floor houses the popular Café Rüdigerhof, a traditional Viennese café with international newspapers, a hopelessly outdated interior and simple but tasty Austrian cuisine. In summer, the café opens a cosy backyard on the Wienfluss-side of the building, away from the noise of the busy Wienzeile street. Café Rüdigerhof is said to attract a particular mix of people, ranging from old locals to students and a more arty crowd. Don’t mess with the at times moody owner, though…!