Vienna Restaurants

Vienna has tried hard to shed its image of a town locked in the 19th century, and nowhere is that more evident than in the kitchens of the top-notch Austrian chefs who dominate the culinary scene here. They have turned dining from a mittel-europäisch sloshfest of Schweinsbraten, Knödeln, and Kraut (pork, dumplings, and cabbage),
Vienna has tried hard to shed its image of a town locked in the 19th century, and nowhere is that more evident than in the kitchens of the top-notch Austrian chefs who dominate the culinary scene here. They have turned dining from a mittel-europäisch sloshfest of Schwei
Vienna has tried hard to shed its image of a town locked in the 19th century, and nowhere is that more evident than in t

Vienna has tried hard to shed its image of a town locked in the 19th century, and nowhere is that more evident than in the kitchens of the top-notch Austrian chefs who dominate the culinary scene here. They have turned dining from a mittel-europäisch sloshfest of Schweinsbraten, Knödeln, and Kraut (pork, dumplings, and cabbage), into an exquisite feast of international flavors.

No one denies that such courtly delights as Tafelspitz—the blush-pink boiled beef famed as Emperor Franz Josef's favorite dish—is delicious, but these traditional carb-loaded meals tend to leave you stuck to your seat like a suction cup.

The dining scene of today's Vienna has transformed itself, thanks in part to a new generation of chefs, such as Heinz Reitbauer Jr. and Christian Petz, who've worked hard to establish an international brand of Viennese cooking, Neue Wiener Küche (New Vienna cuisine). They have stepped onto the stage, front and center, to create signature dishes, such as fish soup with red curry, which have rocketed to fame; they have fan clubs, host television shows and publish top-selling cookbooks, such as Neue Cuisine: The Elegant Tastes of Vienna; there are star Austrian chefs the way there are in New York and Hollywood, and these chefs want to delight an audience hungry for change.

Schmaltzy schnitzels have been replaced by prized Styrian beef—organic meat from farm-raised cattle—while soggy Nockerl (small dumplings) are traded in for seasonal delights like Carinthian asparagus, Styrian wild garlic, or the zingy taste of common garden stinging nettle. Wisely, Vienna has also warmly welcomed into its kitchens chefs from around the world, who give exotic twists to old favorites.

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  • 1. Ice Dream Factory

    $ | 7th District/Neubau | American

    This hopping little spot popped onto the Burggasse last year, and it's the best thing that's happened to the sweet tooth since cake was invented...Read More

  • 2. Amerlingbeisl

    $ | 7th District/Neubau | Austrian

    If you're lucky, you can snag a table in the idyllic garden of this low-key pub, hidden away inside a delightful Biedermeyer cobbled courtyard...Read More

  • 3. Café Museum

    $ | 1st District | Café

    The controversial architect Adolf Loos (famed for his pronouncement "Ornament is a sin") laid the foundation stone for this coffeehouse in 1899...Read More

  • 4. Corns 'n Pops

    $ | 2nd District/Leopoldstadt | International

    The dining area looks a bit like the set of a modern sitcom. Dining tables are simple and white, and chairs are in white plastic. This ensemble...Read More

  • 5. Do-An

    $ | 6th District/Mariahilf | International

    This bustling restaurant in a stall along the Naschmarkt is a prime place to stop for a bite and watch the crowds go by. The menu is as diverse...Read More

  • 6. The Dining Room

    $$$$ | 13th District/Hietzing | Austrian

    The pioneer of private dining in Vienna, Angelika Apfelthaler prepares and serves a gourmet dinner three times a week in her lovely Mediterranean...Read More

  • 7. Schon Schön

    $ | 7th District/Neubau | Austrian

    Creative types gravitate toward Lindengasse, one of the trendiest parts of Vienna. Here you'll find Schon Schön, where a chef, a clothing designer...Read More

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