Where does Dobos Torte come from?

Dobos Torte is, very unsurprisingly, named after a fellow by the name of Jozsef Dobos, a pastry chef of no small repute in the Austrian Empire. Dobos unveiled his now-famous torte at the National General Exhibition of Budapest in 1885, and it shortly became an international sensation, said to have been enjoyed by Emperor Franz Joseph I and Empress Elisabeth. As one might expect with a cake that became so famous so quickly, it inspired many copycats tortes, though none of Dobos’ competitiors could ever quite crack the recipe.

Finally, in 1906, Dobos retired and consented to publish his formula. Since then Dobos Torte has been a mainstay in the cafés of Vienna, the pastry capital of the civilized world. I should add that it was also the capital of just about everything else in Central Europe in Dobos’ day, including Dobos’ home state of Hungary, which is where he lived and worked (in Budapest). So it makes a certain amount of sense that even now many Austrians still claim Dobos’ torte as their own, even though by contemporary standards Dobos lived in a different country.

Oh, and if you wan to sound like a true Hungarian, the name is pronounced DOH-bosh.

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