Leopold Hawelka, 1911-2011.
Die Presse and Der Standard; for an English-language obituary confirming the international reach of the Hawelka name, take a look at this remembrance published in the Washington Post.
The news of Herr Hawelka's passing moved me in a particular way for the simple reason that I frequently visited his storied coffee house during my time in Vienna. Café Hawelka's location in the heart of Vienna's touristy Innere Stadt makes this venerable establishment a popular stop for foreign visitors, but I found that if I came in at the right time (typically in the early evening) the place was empty except for two or three local regulars, which meant that I could quietly sit with a cup of coffee (or, sometimes, a tall glass of beer) and peruse the assortment of newspapers or do my German homework without too many distractions. Though Leopold Hawelka had long since ceded oversight of day-to-day operations to his son and grandsons, the old Cafetier was still rumored to appear occasionally to see how things were going. I harbored hopes that I might catch a glimpse of this living legend on one of my visits to Café Hawelka, but it was not to be. Friede seiner Asche!
I am on the road again, currently at a retreat house northwest of Chicago for a gathering of young Jesuits in formation, after which I'll be visiting friends in various places. Posting will be sparse for the next few days, but I hope to make an appearance from time to time. Since I probably will not post again in 2011, I wish all readers a very happy new year. AMDG.