Saturday 21 May

Trip to Austria

posted May 17, 2016, 10:55 AM by Reinhard Schoeller   [ updated May 17, 2016, 11:41 AM ]

Nine members of the Irish-Austrian Society went on a culture and wine tour to Burgenland and South Styria from the 17th - 22nd April. The tour was organised by Ulrike Schoeller and we all met up at Dublin Airport for our Aer Lingus flight to Vienna on Sunday morning 17th April. From Vienna we travelled by coach to the village of Podersdorf in Burgenland - a journey of about an hour. Our Hotel Seewirt had lovely views over the lake (Neusiedlersee) - and we had an excellent dinner in a dining room of our own during which we sampled some local wines.
Next morning was overcast and dull and we had rain on our journey by coach to the town of Eisenstadt where we were met by our excellent guide, Waltraud Kumer. She was steeped in the history of the town, where the composer Haydn was in residence for so long, and gave us a very interesting tour including the wonderful Castle Esterhazy. The rain soon cleared and after lunch we headed for Frauenkirchen and the Umathum vineyard. The owner gave us a very interesting talk on the soil of the region and took us out to his vineyard. On our return to Podersdorf we stopped to see the basilica in Frauenkirchen.
On Tuesday we travelled to Riegersburg and visited the huge Goelles distillery - famous for its vinegars and Schnapps. I brought home a delicious rose wine vinegar. Not far away we stopped at a chocolate shop - selling beautifully wrapped homemade chocolates. Ideal presents!
After lunch we travelled through South Styria in lovely warm spring weather: acres of vineyards and peach, pear, apple and cherry orchards covered in blossom. We were really seeing the countryside at its best. We arrived at the village of Leutschach where we were to stay at the excellent Hotel Langgasthof Tscheppe for the next three days and enjoy its excellent cuisine and wine.
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On Wednesday we set off for Graz on a glorious sunny morning. We were met by our guide Martin Haller who told us he had lived for a number of years in Kilfenora, County Clare breeding Connemara ponies ! He also spoke English with a Clare accent! Graz is a 900 year old imperial city dominated by the Schlossberg on the hill with its famous clock tower and wonderful views over the city. To get there our guide took us through the tunnel built during World War 2 to serve as an air raid shelter - and then to the glass lift which brought us to the top. We were glad to sit up there and have cool drinks in the sunshine. Afterwards Martin took us to the beautiful baroque basilica in Stainz and told us of the influence and patronage of Archduke Johann - the "Styrian Prince" whose statue stands in the main square in Graz. He also mentioned that the great Austrian conductor, Nikolaus Harnoncourt (recently deceased) was a direct descendent of Archduke Johann and had given a special concert in the basilica. And we saw a small exhibition of photographs of Harnoncourt and his family at the back of the church. Then we returned to our hotel in Leutschach after a very fulfilled day.

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On Thursday morning we were taken on a walking tour of Leutschach by the town mayor and former school teacher, Karl Neubauer. Karl knew everyone in the village and we were constantly greeted by locals as we walked along ! He took us to sample some beer at a local small brewery and also pointed out a large house opposite our hotel which once belonged to a branch of the Trapp family. Karl came with us when we later visited the winemaker Skoff and all had lunch at his restaurant near the Slovenian border.
Friday was our last day and on our way to Vienna airport in the morning we visited a small family-owned pumpkin oil factory near Leutschach, Styria is famous for its delicious pumpkin oil which I find makes great salad dressings.

Thank you, Ulli for a truly Austrian experience. I know I speak for everyone on the trip when I say we appreciate all your dedication and hard work.

Anne FitzPatrick


Bray - Greystones cliff walk

posted May 15, 2016, 4:41 AM by Admin austria.ie   [ updated May 15, 2016, 4:47 AM ]


On the glorious morning of 14 May 2016 twelve members of the Irish-Austrian Society – all of them Austrians except Rosemary and Ursula - met outside the National Sea Life Centre in Bray in order to complete the classic cliff walk from Bray to Greystones. We were told by Ulrike to be there at 10:30 am “sharp”, however the Austrians (most of whom have been living on the Green Island for many years) have apparently been infected by the Irish sense of time, so we left close to 11 am.

Gerhard, our leader, suggested that we take the higher route via Bray Head, but he found little support so we stuck to the lower route. The only one who wanted to go via Bray Head was little Konstantin, Christopher’s son. However, his protests were ignored. He was consoled when we later came across an ice cream van which he would have missed had we gone via Bray Head. All the world was on the way from Bray to Greystones and back. No wonder as it was what the Irish call a “pet day”. The sky was blue, the sun heated up the earth to mighty 15 degrees celsius which makes most inhabitants of Ireland think that they are in Spain, the bird were singing in praise of the Weather God and the seals were popping up from the deep blue sea looking in amazement at the hords of walkers.

By one o clock, shortly after we made our way through the Greystones Marina we arrived at the Beach House Pub in Greystones. I had been there 10 years ago when it was a small and ordinary pub. It now is a formidable establishment with a nice back garden and good food. Obviously, those Russian oligarchs who moor their yachts in the Marina bring good business to Greystones.

After having eaten and drunk sufficiently most of the group took the DART back to Bray. Reinhard the Younger was more upmarket: he had arranged to be picked up by car. Konstantin expressed no wish to climb Bray Head. Once he was told that there was no ice cream van up there his enthusiasm for conquering heights evaporated.

Gerhard the Leader had thus only three followers on the way back via Bray Head: Rosemary, Ursula and myself.  Wonderful as the walk from Bray to Greystones had been, the walk back from Greystones to Bray via Bray Head was even more wonderful. I have no words to describe it, all I can say is that we four felt very sorry for the eight who had decided not to come with us. But maybe they do not need our sympathy because they will never know what they missed.

A big “thank you” to Roseymary and Reinhard Dutter for setting it all up and to Gerhard who led us. Do it again soon!

Herbert Herzmann

2016 Essay Competition Winners announced

posted May 11, 2016, 1:03 PM by Admin austria.ie   [ updated May 20, 2016, 11:36 AM by Reinhard Schoeller ]

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The Winners of the 2016 German Language Essay Competition were announced today at a ceremony hosted by the Austrian Ambassador Dr. Thomas Nader in Dublin. At the ceremony, the Dr. Nader thanked the Irish Austrian Society for organizing the competition and the schools, teachers and pupils for their participation. He also expressed his thanks to the Austrian Lecturers in Ireland for reviewing and assessing all essays. The President of the Irish Austrian Society, Guy Johnston, also thanked all participants and teachers for their participation and comittment to the german language, which they will find valuable in years to come.

The Winners: 

Juniors: 
Andrew Roche, St Mary's Knockbeg College, Carlow
Winner of the St. Fergal Trophy
Teacher: Ms Louise Dillon-Reeves

Jessica Byrne, St. Leo's College, Carlow
2nd place
Teacher: Ms Ann Tully

Transition:
Aoife Madden, St. Joseph's Secondary School Castlebar, Mayo
Winner of Paul Dubsky's Environment Trophy
Teacher: Ms Caroline Loftus

Alice O'Donnell, Midleton College, Cork
2nd Place
Teacher: Ms Melanie Henry

Seniors:
Weiran Bian, Midleton College, Cork
Winner of Dr. Otto Glaser Trophy
Teacher: Ms Melanie Henry

Mikolaj Glegolski, CBS High School Clonmel, Tipperary
2nd Place
Teacher: Ms Martina O'Reilly

Winner of Catriona Dowling Memorial Trophy for Best Teacher:
Ms Marion Cronin, Presentation Secondary School Tralee, Kerry

The Irish Austrian Society congratulates all participants and winners and thanks all schools for their participation in this year's competition.


Glasnevin Walk

posted Apr 12, 2016, 7:16 AM by Reinhard Schoeller   [ updated Apr 12, 2016, 7:18 AM ]

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On a cold and sunny day at Glasnevin Cemetery last Saturday 9 April , we had a tour of the cemetery linked in with a fascinating lecture on Irish History and some of it's iconic figures such as Daniel O'Connell, Charles Stewart Parnell, Michael Collins, Constance Markievicz and some rather more contemporary ones like Éamon de Valera, James Larkin and Seán MacBride. Proceedings were brought to a fitting conclusion at the Gravediggers Pub.

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Irish Whiskey Tasting

posted Mar 10, 2016, 9:24 AM by Reinhard Schoeller   [ updated Mar 10, 2016, 9:24 AM ]

On Wednesday, 9 March, we had our first ever Whiskey Tasting, with a line up premium Irish Whiskies. It was a relaxed gathering of members, new members and friends who all enjoyed the tasting of the various whiskies as well as some entertaining facts about the making and the history of Irish Whiskey.  The tasting was hosted by our member and Whiskey expert Reinhard Schoeller.

    
Line up: Bushmills Black Bush, Writers Tears Copper Pot, Green Spot, Powers John's Lane, Redbreast 12, Connemara

AGM 2016

posted Feb 20, 2016, 7:33 AM by Reinhard Schoeller   [ updated Feb 20, 2016, 7:33 AM ]

On 11 February, the annual general meeting took place at St John's House in Dublin. Hon Secretary Peta Taffe read the minutes of the previous AGM from the 2015, which were adopted. Hon Treasurer Ulrike Schoeller presented the accounts and financial statement. President Guy Johnston then gave on overview of the past year and the events held. The current committee was re-elected. 

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Fireside Talk with Wilhelm Klinger

posted Feb 20, 2016, 7:21 AM by Reinhard Schoeller   [ updated Feb 20, 2016, 7:22 AM ]

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On Tuesday 9th of February we enjoyed an exclusive evening with Wilhelm Klinger. Wilhelm Klinger is head of the Austrian Wine Marketing Board and was in Ireland on a mission to promote Austrian Wines. We were graciously invited to the residence of the Austrian Ambassador to Ireland, Dr. Thomas Nader and his wife Ingrid.

Wilhelm Klinger gave an insightful lecture about Austrian Wines, the wine marketing board and his role in the board. We had then the unique opportunity to taste some of the Austrian wines we talked about before, guided himself.

It was a very lively evening of wine, culture and music – the definite highlight of the evening was Wilhelm Klinger performing two songs by Gerhard Bronner.

For more about Austrian Wine and the Austrian Wine marketing board please visit www.austrianwine.com

Essay Competition 2016 now open

posted Jan 14, 2016, 12:50 PM by Reinhard Schoeller   [ updated Jan 14, 2016, 12:51 PM ]

Dear Principals, Teachers and Students

The 2016 German Language Essay competition is now open. Invitation letters/Emails have been sent out to all Schools. For full competition details please go to page Essay Competition 2016. Good Luck to all participants.

Also check out photos of the 2015 award ceremony.

Christmas Dinner 2015

posted Dec 12, 2015, 7:47 AM by Reinhard Schoeller

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Our annual Christmas gala dinner once again took place at the magnificent Royal St. George Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire, which year after year is an excellent venue for our final event of the year. 80 members and guests came together to enjoy this convivial celebration. Prizes for the raffle and auction were sponsored by Topflight, The Imperial Hotel Vienna, Restaurant Matt The Tresher, The Marker Hotel Dublin and The National Concert Hall

For pictures from the evening, please click the photo above.

Saint Nikolaus visits us

posted Dec 12, 2015, 7:26 AM by Reinhard Schoeller   [ updated Dec 12, 2015, 7:26 AM ]

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Last Saturday, 5 December, Saint Nikolaus came to visit us again as in previous years. Members of the society, friends, parents and the children had a wonderful afternoon enjoying some christmas cookies, drinks, playing, singing and of course Saint Nikolaus giving some presents to the children. Click on the picture above for more pictures from the afternoon.

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