OLM Nature Escape will open its doors in December 2023. The eco aparthotel isn’t just an architectural eye-catcher, the kitchen also offers a truly special culinary concept. We invited Berni Aichner (Head of Cuisine) and Theodor Falser (Michelin-star chef) to join us at the table so we could find out more about the ideas behind PRENN°.
Berni, could you please tell us about the PRENN° concept for OLM Nature Escape?
The new culinary concept for OLM Nature Escape is vastly different to the concept employed in conventional hotels. There is no half or three-quarter board. Instead, we offer our guests a wide range of culinary options so they can individually tailor their holiday when it comes to food. We place particular emphasis on providing a healthy, regional breakfast with a high proportion of organic produce.
What makes this concept so special?
Guests at OLM have the opportunity to benefit from the gastronomic offering at PRENN°. Five evenings a week, they can book an APÉRO dinner in a relaxing setting and choose from a selection of tapas that fuse Alpine and Mediterranean influences. Two evenings a week, it’s possible to book the OLM dinner with a four-course menu that changes theme and is extremely varied. What’s more, the kitchens in the apart-suites offer the option of preparing your own meals. Guests receive a specially developed recipe booklet when they check in and can purchase almost all of the ingredients in the OLM shop. If you would rather visit a restaurant in the local area, we can recommend good South Tyrolean pubs, mountain restaurants, pizzerias, wine bars and premium award-winning restaurants.
Can you tell us about the name?
The name PRENN° stems from the original farmstead, Prennhof. Because the kitchen was always a central meeting place at farms, the intention is that the open front cooking area at OLM Nature Escape should also be a place where guests meet. The ° symbol in the name represents the circle that’s used as the architectural trademark of OLM Nature Escape. PRENN° is a meeting place, characterised by hospitality, conviviality and cuisine. We have a passion for enjoyment, in a sense.
Berni and Theodor, how did the partnership come about?
The partnership is a result of a recommendation from Thomas Steiner, the ideas man behind OLM Nature Escape and a friend of mine. We developed the culinary concept together with award-winning chef Theodor Falser. We clicked straight away because of our passion for cooking and love of high-quality produce. It also turns out that we’re the same age, so deciding to work together was incredibly easy.
How was it for the two of you to create the breakfast offering and the APÉRO dinner as the head of cuisine at PRENN° and a Michelin-star chef?
It was an exciting task. We had a basic concept to work from, which was shaped by Theodor’s many years of experience. It was and is fun to implement new ideas and balance the traditional and the modern. The main focus is always that the produce is of high quality. Theodor is a global player and I have strong roots in the Tauferer Ahrntal, so we complement each other brilliantly. We place great emphasis on ensuring every product has a story and providing high-quality, healthy options. OLM Nature Escape is a little different to the norm and you should be able to sense that in every bite.
Berni, in addition to the APÉRO dinner, there is also the OLM dinner every Tuesday and Friday, developed in-house and with a varying theme. Which themes can guests look forward to and how do you design these menus?
The OLM dinner is offered with different themes that are shaped by local traditions, regional produce from short supply chains and Mediterranean influences. We always incorporate organic produce in our menus, too. Every OLM dinner comprises an OLM greeting plus four other courses, each of which corresponds with the chosen theme. Without being able to go into more detail here, our menus are presented with topics like “Forest”, “DANN South Tyrol” and “Mountain & Mediterranean”. We also offer a vegetarian option and, on request, can prepare an attractive vegan option.
Photocredits: Hannes Niederkofler