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    by mkataoka Fodor's Editor | Posted on Nov 28, 16 at 01:31 PM
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How would you interpret our Vienna restaurant experience?

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An enjoyable trip report is hopefully coming soon, but for now, something was on my mind and I just wanted to solicit any opinions here:

We arrived in Vienna in the afternoon after having traveled all day - it had been a somewhat harrowing experience and we were exhausted and jet-lagged with basically comfortable athletic-type wear on our persons for the flight. A big goal was getting to the Mozart cemetaries before they closed, so we just dropped our bags off quickly and headed into town. We luckily got to both the Zentralfriedhof and St. Marx, and by this point we were very hungry. We just decided to push forward and head into the City Center rather than backtrack and waste time, in the area of Stephansplatz. We consulted a certain guidebook and thought it would be fun/casual to get a "near-heuriger" experience, so we headed to the one recommended in the guidebook. When we arrived, there was a hesitation, and then we were told it was "reservation only" - the placed was mostly empty, although it WAS a Saturday night. By now we were REALLY tired and headed back toward our hotel - near the hotel, seemingly away from a touristy area, there was another restaurant that seemed casual/unassuming from the outside, and we liked the menu so we tried our luck there. We got the same reception - some hesitations and apologies, but no seating was possible (this place did seem more full than the other). At this point, exhausted and hungry, we just bought food at the grocery store and ate it back at the hotel room. We were very polite in being declined and yet would have been able to be good customers.

My question - did we underestimate the formality of Viennese restaurants and should have cleaned up better - were we turned down because of our dress/appearance? Or is it very well possible that we were turned down at 2 restaurants because they were genuinely busy (or going to get very busy) and that reservations are typical on a Saturday night in Vienna? It just seemed odd to us that it happened twice in 1 night...

Thanks. We are just looking to learn from our experiences.

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