by Leticia Marie Sanchez
According to Norman Lebrecht, author of “The Book of Musical Anectodes” (Simon & Schuster, 1985), Beethoven flew off the handle when a waiter at the Viennese restaurant “The Swan,” brought him the wrong meat dish. Some artists are particular about their piano benches (Gould) while others are particular about their beef. An outraged Beethoven hurled the dish, gravy and all, over the waiter’s head.
Just as the wrong meat could turn him into a raging bull, the right one could turn him into a loving lamb. When his friend Ferdinand Ries sent him a particular type of roast veal, Beethoven kissed and embraced him, telling him “never had anything given him such pleasure as the roast veal, coming at the very moment when he so greatly longed for it.” (Lebrehct, 81)
Beethoven also adored bread soup, which he ate religiously on Thursdays. Woe to the chef who did not prepare it properly. He or she would have to duck from Beethoven-hurled Eggs Bombs. Yolks on the Cook!
Beethoven obviously felt all of his Senses, including his gastronomical ones, intensely. Perhaps that is why the wrong cut of beef could put him into a stew.