Vienna is Indulgence
The Viennese like things simple and pleasant. So Viennese bistros are nice and comfortable. As long as we can remember, these restaurants have been serving up solid, tasty home cooking from schnitzels to goulash, liver with herbs in butter to Kaiserschmarren, a kind of shredded pancakes. This consistency has led to a renaissance of the bistro culture that is celebrated in familiar restaurants such as the Ubl, Gasthaus Wolf and Glacis Beisl as well as the renowned Wirten am Eck'.
The enjoyment of a good drop of wine crafted from the 700 hectares of Viennese vineyards is not limited to these places. The most exclusive local restaurants have long featured Viennese Riesling and Pinot Blanc (Weissburgunder). And the Wiener Gemischter Satz. This specialty, which has even been awarded the DAC seal of quality, involves growing the grapes of at least three different white wine varieties and pressing them together. Especially the guests at the heurige enjoy young and old Viennese wines along with the hearty delicacies from the buffet. These romantic and cozy taverns can be found by the dozen in the wine villages at the edge of the city such as Grinzing, Nussdorf, and Stammersdorf.
The Viennese wine tavern culture also belongs to the intangible cultural heritage of UNESCO, just like the tradition Viennese coffee house culture. The Viennese coffee house has been an oasis of gemütlichkeit for ages. Traditional cafés such as the Central, Landtmann, Museum and Demel entice with a wide variety of coffee drinks, international newspapers and pastry creations. Modern representatives of the genre, such as the "Ansari", "Balthasar" and the "Adlerhof", enhance the tradition with stylish flair. A close relative of the café is the pastry shop. Their specialty, pies and cakes, are the icing on Vienna's dolce vita in the form of Bundt cake and sachertorte. Chocolatiers such as "Xocolat", "Fruth" and "Blühendes Konfekt" also offer sweet temptation.
In Vienna too, gourmet temples are at one end of the pleasure scale – such as the Restaurant Amador, the restaurant of Konstantin Filippou or Steirereck im Stadtpark, which ranks 12th in the "World's 50 Best". And at the other end, you can find... fast food! However, with a special Viennese twist: A trip to the wurst stand, especially after visiting the ball, and sometimes after a concert or the opera, is quite the custom.
The city serves up a cornucopia of different taste experiences, from hearty to organic and ethnic. Offerings that are often ideally combined with a surprising ambience: No matter whether you're dining with a view in "Das Loft" restaurant in the Jean Novel Tower on the Danube Canal or having a drink in the "American Bar" once furnished by the architecture innovator Adolf Loos: the show and taste experience go hand in hand.
You’ll find epicurean delights in every corner of Vienna. Nevertheless, some quarters are especially tempting to gourmets by offering an enormous variety in a small area. Such is the case with the Naschmarkt. This highly fascinating Viennese market serves up exotic offerings from around the world and boasts of a number of must-visit gastronomical establishments in the market and surrounding streets, from the Market to the Amacord. Trendy pubs, such as "Wetter" and "An-Do" entice at the Brunnen and Yppen markets, while round the corner at the Karmeliter market, the "Schöne Perle" and "Das Kraus" have been the topic of conversation for quite a while. Other culinary spots worth experiencing are the dining districts on the Spittleberg, in the Servitenviertel, around Margaretenplatz and in the Freihausviertel.
A host of culinary events – from the Genussfestival in the Stadtpark to the Vienna Wine Hiking Day to the Snail Festival and special restaurant weeks – add further gustatory pleasures to the mix of delicacies.
Facts and figures „Pleasure“
- Viennese cuisine: Vienna is the only city in the world to give its name to a unique style of food
- Around 8,210 outlets – from restaurant to coffee house (Source: Annual Statistics 2020 Austrian Economic Chamber)
- Around 2,240 coffee houses of all kinds – from the traditional café to the Espresso (Source: Annual Statistics 2020 Austrian Economic Chamber)
- National directory of intangible UNESCO cultural heritage in Vienna: Traditional Viennese coffee house culture (on the list since 2011), Viennese wine tavern culture (on the list since 2019), intangible cultural heritage of UNESCO
- Around 4,200 sidewalk cafés (Source: DerStandard: Insert "Leben in Wien" (Living in Vienna) Edition July 2021)
- 12 Viennese restaurants awarded by the Michelin Guide: Restaurant Amador is Austria’s first 3-star restaurant. Restaurant Steirereck, Silvio Nickol Gourmet Restaurant in Palais Coburg, Konstantin Filippou and Mraz & Sohn have 2 stars each, seven further restaurants have 1 star each (Source: Michelin Guide “Main Cities of Europe 2022”)
- Gault Millau 2022 lists 159 toque-winning establishments in Vienna
- Restaurant Steirereck: 12th place in the World‘s 50 Best Restaurants (Source: www.theworlds50best.com )
- Palais Coburg was awarded the title "World’s Best Wine" for the second time in 2017 by the British wine magazine "The World of Fine Wine" out of 4,500 leading restaurants around the globe (first awarded in 2014)
- 100 heuriger and inns with wine from their own cultivation (Source: Vienna Chamber of Agriculture)
- Vienna is also the only metropolis in the world that grows enough wine within the city limits to make it worth mentioning. Around 700 hectares under vine, around 140 wineries (excluding hobby vintners) (Source: Vienna Chamber of Agriculture)
- One third of the area under vine in Vienna is organic (Source: Annual activity report 2018 of the Vienna Chamber of Agriculture)
- Vienna Gemischter Satz: awarded by Slow Food as a Presidio product and has also held DAC status since 2013
- White wine is grown on around 80 percent of the area under vine and one quarter of the total area under vine is accounted for by the Wiener Gemischter Satz (Source: Vienna Chamber of Agriculture)
- Around 580 Viennese farmers (Source: Statistik Austria 2020)
- Agricultural area: 14 percent of the total area, or around 5,700 hectares (Source: Vienna Agriculture Report 2017)
- 35 % of the agricultural land in Vienna is organically cultivated, making Vienna one of the leading federal provinces (Source: Statistik Austria 2020)
- Around 30 registered Christmas markets and market-style Christmas events (according to the list at www.wien.gv.at )