Near the fortress – the very heart of Sighișoara –, in the most bustling part of the city, there is a special place, Casa Ferdinand, that hides stories and culinary traditions from time immemorial.
A quick Internet search reveals – just a click away – recommendations from many guests who have stepped through the doors of this restaurant. The positive remarks sparked our interest, especially since each reviewer seemed to make the same point: If you go to Sighișoara, do not miss Casa Ferdinand. No wonder we didn’t have the heart to miss such an opportunity; after all it’s not like we visit this part of the country every other week. Therefore, after a long day spent wandering around the fortress, the city and its proximities, we stopped here, at Casa Fedinand in Sighișoara.
Some of us spoilt their taste buds with the famous goulash, others chose beef soup or tochitură, a traditional pork stew served with polenta and pickle salad. All of them finger licking good, so no wonder the place gets so many positive reviews, especially since the lady who owns it and is in charge of everything food and customer-related was kind enough to chat with us. In the Casa Ferdinand Restaurant, food is held in the highest regard. Nothing is more important than the specialties she offers to her guests. Here, each dish is made according to the recipes inherited from older generations. Whether it’s vegetables, fruit, eggs or dairy products, everything is analyzed in detail; peppers, for instance, must be of a certain size when they are added in the cooking pot and this rule is never broken. And nothing goes better with a good meal than a story – a beautiful legend that makes one daydream.
Contrary to expectations, the name Ferdinand does not come from a king; it is the name of the painter who lived here. Fearing his secret might be discovered by someone, Ferdinand the painter used to prepare the paints and colours that made him famous in the dead of the night, to avoid the prying eyes of his disciples. Legend has it, these colours were so strong that no other painter was able to cover them. Despite being so skillful, one day Ferdinand decides to leave his native land and go to Athens to also learn the art of stone carving. After a while, having managed to master this craft as well, he returns to Sighișoara and makes a good deal of money. The first thing he does is paint the walls of his home using the coal in the fireplace.
Once back, Ferdinand the painter develops the habit of inviting his friends over to dinner on quarter moon nights and delighting them with the European dishes he himself had enjoyed, not so long before. Images of Greek statues carved on the wall are still visible today and, through them, Casa Ferdinand’s legend continues to live on.