Monday, October 1, 2012

Who is Julius Meinl?

As I was cleaning and re-sorting my studio this summer (egads, that was painful!), I kept coming across various items of my ephemera that bore a certain silhouette and name:

I believe this roughly translates to: "We
like to go to Julius Meinl!", but don't
quote me on that.  :D

It was all at once so familiar to me, and yet I couldn't place why I knew it.  Then I read the history behind the name -

OF COURSE!  It was the eponymous coffee shop I had visited numerous times during my month-long trip to Vienna 25 years ago!  (Side note:  If you're wondering how I could forget something like this, keep in mind that I was 19.  And I could legally imbibe alcohol in Europe.  'Nuff said.)  :D

Coincidentally, Julius Meinl is celebrating 150 years this year! Over here, any company celebrating 150 years is astonishing; in Europe, they're still considered a "young" company.  Did you know that this shop was one of the first to roast coffee beans in-house?  It was a time-saver for customers, who used to have to roast the green coffee beans themselves!  Over the last century and a half, their logo has changed very little.  The only thing they've modified is the transition from image to silhouette - no doubt to play down what could be construed as offensive, especially now that there are shops in the U.S. (one cannot discount what could be deemed "offensive" over here; i.e., EVERYTHING).

It's too bad that I didn't take better care of my ephemera from that glorious trip to Vienna a quarter-century ago.  I still have some in a scrapbook but the mundane stuff, like sugar packets from a well-known institution, never made it.  Alas, such is the carelessness of a non-fully formed Ephemeraologist.  But my Grammie kept her bag from her trip in 1984!

And my friend Mary, who has seen the world via her zillions of flights and cruises, saved those sugar packets for me!

The matchbox cover label, pictured above, just randomly came in a pack of six I ordered from Manto Fev.  I'm so happy to have it!

And there's good news - I can now visit a Julius Meinl on my next trip to Chicago!  They opened three shops on the north side - two coffee houses and one patisserie!  The next time I'm there, I will definitely go - and this time, I'll save the ephemera.  :)

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