Vienna and its old and new coffee houses – a long love story
Few things in life are more important to the Viennese than a relaxing visit to a coffee house. To read newspapers, to chat, to play cards or simply to watch the other guests and the world go by. In some Viennese coffee houses, you get the impression that time stands still. In others you can get a feel for the modern coffee experience in so-called “Third Wave Coffee Bars”. Tradition and modern – you will find both in Vienna.
The classical Viennese coffee houses
This coffee house is world famous and since 1876 its home has been in the first district: the Café Central in Herrengasse. Coffee and cake – in particular, Guglhupf, a typically Austrian cake – have been enjoyed here by many famous people, such as Sigmund Freud, Franz Kafka, Adolf Loos and Stefan Zweig.
The selection of coffee in the Café Central is typical for an “old Vienna” coffee house – in addition to the popular Melange, you can also choose from a Mokka, a Verlängerten, a Kaffee Verkehrt or a Salon Einspänner. These are all described in detail in the menu. There is also no need to stay hungry in the Café Central which offers Wiener Schnitzel as well as the “coffee house classics” such as the Alt-Wiener Suppentopf, Sacher Würstel oder Toast. Even if the queues at times reach to the entrance, a visit to Café Central should be on your “to-do” list when visiting Vienna.
Address: Ecke Herrengasse / Strauchgasse, 1010 Vienna
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday 7.30 am – 10 pm
Sundays and public holidays 10 am – 10 pm
Piano music: daily from 5 pm – 10 pm
The smallest coffee shop in Vienna offers great coffee
The Kaffeemodul in Vienna’s eighth district, Josefstadt, describes itself as the smallest coffee shop in Vienna. It is centrally located and, in terms of “Third Wave Coffee Bars”, it is one of the top coffee spots in the city (If you would like to know more about “Third Wave Coffee Bars / Third Coffee Wave” click here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_wave_of_coffee). The two owners place great value on their coffee creations and they have already won an array of prizes. From an espresso to a cappuccino or an excellent filter coffee and their popular summer drink, the Cold Brew – all can be enjoyed both inside and outside while experiencing an urban flair.
Address: Josefstädter Straße 35, 1080 Vienna
Opening hours: Monday to Friday 7.30 am – 5.30 pm
Saturday 10 am – 2 pm
The institution on Vienna’s Ringstraße
Few coffee houses are as equally popular with tourists and locals as the Café Landtmann, situated directly on the Ringstraße. In the evening in particular, the guests come from all walks of life: theatre-goers from the Burgtheater opposite, hungry business people, politicians and visitors to Vienna.
Café Landtmann offers a wide selection of different types of coffee. The popular Melange is a must as are the Turkish coffee and the Franziskaner. And what tastes better as an accompaniment than a Mehlspeise (Viennese for cake)? Here lies the strength of this coffee house. The cakes, desserts and sweets in the Landtmann Pâtisserie are exceptionally good and varied. Every taste is catered for and you will be tempted by much more than the classical Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel. In the warm months of the year, you can sit in one of two outdoor gardens with a wonderful view of the Burgtheater, the City Hall and its square as well as the University of Vienna. But don’t forget to go inside too as the imperial interior will take your breath away.
Address: Universitätsring 4, 1010 Vienna
Opening hours: daily 7.30 am – midnight
The best coffee near the University of Vienna
A short walk away from the University of Vienna and Schottentor, you can find the Jonas Reindl Café, which is still relatively new on the coffee house scene. Due to its location, it is hardly surprising that it is frequented by many students who enjoy a quick espresso or a cappuccino there. The interior and its fittings are a further highlight in the Jonas Reindl Café. The industrial stools and chairs are up to one hundred years old, are made of steel and wood and, apart from being extremely comfortable, also look great and stylish. On sunny days, we recommend you take your coffee-to-go to the park opposite, the Votivpark and enjoy it on one of the benches there.
Jonas Reindl Café
Address: Währingerstraße 2-4, 1090 Vienna
Opening hours: Monday to Friday 7:30 am – 10 pm
Saturday 9:30 am – 10 pm
Sunday 10:30 am – 6 pm
Waltzes, Cakes and Writers
Between Stephansplatz and Michaelerplatz you will find the well-known Café Restaurant Bräunerhof. The famous Austrian literary figure and author, Thomas Bernhard, was a regular guest here and a glass cabinet now stands at the place where he always sat as a memorial to him. The Bräunerhof is a place where it seems that time has somehow stood still, especially on Sundays, when a small musical ensemble plays world famous waltzes. You will likely want to stay longer here – the choice of cakes is very good and you can spend a relaxing Sunday afternoon reading the many newspapers in various languages.
Café Restaurant Bräunerhof
Address: Stallburggasse 2, 1010 Vienna
Opening hours: Monday to Friday 8 am – 8 pm
Saturday and Sunday 8 am – 6 pm
If you want to enjoy a coffee from the current Austrian barista state champion, you can visit the Saturday market in Langegasse in Vienna’s eighth district, Josefstadt. Between 9 am and 3 pm you can visit the Prem Frischkaffee stand there.