There are so many wonderful restaurants in Vienna Austria to check out during your trip to the city.
Whether you want to enjoy the famous Vienna cafe culture, try some local Viennese foods, or branch out and enjoy something more modern, there’s a little bit of everything among the places to eat in Vienna.
If you are looking for fun things to do while visiting, check out our 2-day itinerary of the city here.
Must-Try Vienna Food Classics
There are a few different foods that you won’t want to miss on your trip to Vienna. Most of the restaurants in Vienna that are on this list have at least one if not several of these Vienna foods on offer.
- Wiener schnitzel is a classic Vienna food that you will find on your travels around the city. It’s in the name after all! The legend goes that a high-ranking official in the military was stationed in Italy when he sampled a Milanesa, a deep-fried veal cutlet that is still common in Milan today. He came back to Vienna and asked his chef to make a Viennese version of it and the Wiener schnitzel was born. The traditional Wiener schnitzel is still made with veal and breaded and fried so that the breading comes away from the veal. However, there is almost always a pork version on the menu as well which is half the price of the more traditional option.
- Sachertorte is a chocolate cake that is made of layers of chocolate sponge with apricot jam in between and topped with chocolate icing that is so thick and rich, you’ll need a coffee (or delicious hot chocolate) to wash it down. Created by a young chef named Franz Sacher, the cake was first made in 1832 in Vienna for Prince Klemens von Metternich to create this cake when the family’s usual chef had fallen ill.
- Kaiserschmarrn, also known as a scrambled pancake, is an Austrian dessert that is found absolutely all over the city and is a fantastic alternative to chocolate cake or apple strudel. You’ll see it at all of the best restaurants in Vienna in the dessert section of the menu and you’ll want to try it topped with icing sugar, applesauce, and fruit preserves.
- Strudel is a mainstay in cafes around Vienna and you have a few options when it comes to the filling. I prefer the apfelstrudel or apple strudel which is layers of thinly sliced apples with cinnamon and sugar between even thinner pieces of pastry. The other popular option in restaurants in Vienna is the topfenstrudel. This is when the pastry is filled with soft quark cheese and it tastes almost like a cheesecake inside a pastry filling. Both are best eaten hot with a little bit of cream on the side.
- Käserkrainer can be found all over Austria, like many of the Vienna foods on this list, but if you have never tried one, it is an absolute must while you are visiting Vienna. Käserkrainer is a sausage made of slightly smoked pork meat that has pieces of cheese running through it. When the sausage is cooked on the grill at a local würstelstand, the cheese melts. The sausage is usually served in a crusty bread roll or sliced up with a piece of rye bread on the side.
- Melange is not technically a Vienna food, it is actually a Vienna drink, but you should absolutely try it while you are visiting the different restaurants in Vienna. It’s especially fantastic from the old-school cafes around the city (I list plenty of them below!). A melange is somewhere between a latte and a cappuccino. It is made by adding hot milk and a very small amount of milk froth to an espresso coffee. It is smooth but still strong in coffee flavor.
Map of the Best Restaurants in Vienna
Best Restaurants in Vienna
These are our top picks for the absolute best places to eat in Vienna that we love.
One thing I do recommend doing before visiting the best restaurants in Vienna is simply downloading the Google Translate app. You can then download the German dictionary and you will be able to translate any menu you want to simply by taking a photo of it on your phone.
While most restaurants in the city center of Vienna offer menus in English, the würstlstands do not and some of the smaller cafes on the edges of the city may have a specials menu written only in German.
Griechenbeisl is one of the most famous restaurants in Vienna, which means you will definitely need to make a reservation if you want to dine here. Especially on the weekends, especially in the summertime.
However, I do believe it’s worth the hype. If you are going to splurge on a meal while you are in Vienna, this is one of the best places to do that.
The decor makes you feel like you’re in an old-school Vienna pub. The staff are very friendly and helpful. They speak English very well and they have an English menu available (as most restaurants in Vienna do around the city center).
And of course, above all else, the local Vienna food here is so fantastic. The quality of the ingredients are above many of those you’ll find at smaller and cheaper cafes around the city.
The schnitzel is exquisite and served with all of the traditional sides. The roasted meats, the goulash, the spaetzle, and the strudel are all worth ordering.
You can book a table through their website or check out their menu here.
2. Zwölf Apostelkeller
One of the main reasons to visit this Vienna restaurant is its history. The restaurant is housed inside an old cellar from the 14th century and it feels almost like you’re dining inside a cathedral.
Sitting beneath the stone arches of this keller is a romantic place to eat in Vienna. Much like Griechenbeisl, it’s a popular place with tourists who are looking for traditional Austrian food on their trip to Vienna, but that doesn’t mean that the food isn’t good.
The schnitzel is one of the most popular menu items and it’s done very well here.
But I would recommend trying some of the other dishes on the menu at Zwölf Apostelkeller like the goulash or the roasted pork. Or if you’re with a group of more than two, the share plates of cheese and roasted meats is fantastic.
The beer here is a highlight in my opinion. They have a nice selection of beers on draft as well as several fantastic wines to choose from.
3. Figmüller Restaurant Bäckerstraße
Want to enjoy traditional Austrian food at a more modern Vienna restaurant? Figmüller is the place where locals and visitors head for a casual dining experience with great food and cold beer.
They serve beer from local Vienna breweries on draft and the menu is full of Vienna foods like schnitzel, roasted pork, strudel, and kaiserschmarrn, but it does things with a slight twist.
The goulash is made with veal, the dumplings are made with spinach, and they have several vegetarian and vegan options of more traditional Viennese dishes available, something that can be hard to find in Vienna’s more traditional taverns.
The food here is presented beautifully and feels like it should be a much more expensive restaurant than it is. You can expect to pay about $20-25 per person for a main dish and a drink or a shared starter and a main dish.
4. 1516 Brewing Company
This local brewery is not only serving up some great beer, but it’s also home to some fantastic Austrian food that you can enjoy at a much lower price than some of the other more historical restaurants in Vienna on this list.
The thing that appealed to me most about this brewery is that all of their beers are all brewed on-site without any additives or preservatives that you find in big commercial breweries these days.
The menu is packed with traditional Austrian beer snacks like soft pretzels with mustard and local cheeses. But they also have spicy wings and housemade jerky if you want something a little bit different.
In addition to the bar snacks, they have a full dinner menu of everything from schnitzel and spaetzle to baby back ribs and pulled pork burgers. The goulash was my personal favorite served with a huge portion of spaetzle. A lot of the dishes on the menu are perfect for sharing with the table.
5. Würstelstand – Zum scharfen René
This is a classic Vienna würsetlstand or sausage stand. They have simple white bratwurst, red bratwurst, käserkrainer, and a specialty that I particularly enjoyed from this stand, the bratwurst scharf or spricy.
Served with pickled chilies and other vegetables that have been pickled with those chilies, this is one of the best ways to have a bratwurst perhaps that I’ve ever tried.
That being said, I came back here a second time in a single trip to Vienna and I tried the currywurst here and it was also fantastic. They actually make and bottle the curry sauce here, which is what made me want to come back a second time to try it.
6. Cafe Frauenhuber
Cafe Frauenhuber is one of the most famous places to eat in Vienna because of who has been seen here in the past.
Both Mozart and Beethoven have played their music at this cafe. Before that, the cafe was actually a medieval bathhouse.
Now it’s just a beautiful old-style Vienna cafe that serves up delicious coffee and even more delicious desserts.
This is one of the best places to have kaiserschmarrn, the scrambled pancakes that I mentioned above. Here its served with housemade apple sauce and they are fluffy and perfectly caramelized on the outside.
In addition to great cakes and coffee, they also serve huge breakfasts here as well as a nice Wiener schnitzel for lunch.
7. Cafe Schwarzenberg
This is the oldest cafe along the Ringstrasse; the large boulevard that circles Vienna.
This Vienna restaurant first opened its doors in 1861. The old-style interior will make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time in the best possible way. Waiters are dressed in traditional uniforms, there is a piano at the center of the cafe where sometimes a pianist plays.
It has had a few different names over the years; Cafe Deutschland during WWII, Café Hochleitner and Café Sperrer before that. But a cafe has been open here since the Ringstrasse was first being constructed and it is now one of the best places to eat in Vienna.
The cafe serves a wonderful breakfast until noon each day. Depending on how hungry you are you can simply start the day with one of their homemade rolls with freshly made jam and butter or you can have a pastry, eggs cooked to your liking or even ham and cheese added to the plate.
I personally recommend coming for their cakes and for the best hot chocolate you’ll have outside of Switzerland. The sachertorte is a great option if you haven’t already sampled it from one of the other cafes in Vienna, but all of the cakes are decadent and delicious.
The Alt Wiener Art is the name of the hot chocolate on the menu that is rich, creamy, dark, and topped with cinnamon and sweet whipped cream. It sounds like it’s too sweet, especially with a slice of cake on the side, but none of it was overly sweet. It simply tasted of chocolate and cream and cinnamon. It was unforgettable.
Opened in 1888, Demel is one of the best bakeries in Vienna. Even the royal family thought so. Demel used to be the favorite haunt of the young Emperor Franz Joseph I.
Since then it has been the place to see and be seen by Vienna aristocrats and those that wish to be.
But it’s not just about the name, the confections here are some of the best in Vienna.
They have all of the traditional offerings like strudel, sachertorte, and kaiserschmarrn, but I recommend trying some of the cakes that are unique to Demel like the Annatorte, dobostorte, or the Demeltorte.
9. Cafe Hawelka
This is one of the more popular restaurants in Vienna to head for breakfast.
It’s located on a quiet side street just off the busy Stephansplatz square.
It was originally started in 1945 and has been run by three generations of the same family ever since it opened its doors.
They make a fantastic melange and have a wide selection of savory and sweet breakfast options. They are most famous for their sweet bread rolls which are served with any of their breakfast options. You can also simply order a few of the bread rolls to have with jam and butter.
If you are looking for a place to have an afternoon pick-me-up, this is also a nice option. Have a coffee with one of their piping hot strudels. The apple strudel here is absolutely fantastic; not too sweet and packed with cinnamon flavor.
10. Cafe Central
Cafe Central is the place to go in Vienna. Whether you are a local or a tourist, this is without a doubt the most famous of all of the cafes and restaurants in Vienna.
It is also the grandest and most expensive.
If you don’t make a reservation, you can expect to wait about 10-15 minutes for a table on a weekday afternoon, and longer on the weekends. You can make a reservation here.
Cafe Central is so elegant with its arched ceiling and pillars throughout the dining room. The booth seats are in keeping with the traditional decor and the wooden tables are the very ones that Trotsky and Freud used to sit at (perhaps not together) when they would frequent this cafe during their time in Vienna.
The desserts here are as delicious as they are beautiful. This is a fantastic place to try a Viennese Melange alongside the warm chocolate cake. They also have a few coffee cocktails which are quite delicious.
They have a full food menu, but I think there are better (and more affordable) restaurants in Vienna for savory foods. Stick to the coffees and pastries here which are utterly delectable and you won’t be disappointed.
11. Würstelstand zum Hohen Markt
For the best käserkrainer in Vienna, I highly recommend coming to this spot. If you love street food at a good price that is seriously delicious food, this is up there as one of the best places to eat in Vienna.
Located near the famous Anker Clock, it’s a good option for lunch so that you can time your visit just right. Every day at noon, the Anker Clock puts on a fun show. Afterward, you can head here for a käserkrainer, or a different würst of your choice, and enjoy lunch for under $5 per person.
Würstelstands aren’t the best when it’s really cold in Vienna because they don’t have anywhere to sit and they are essentially just a street stall with some counter space for you to lean on. But there is coverage from any wind and rain and as long as you’re dressed warmly, you can enjoy a meal here at any time of year.
12. Gösser Bierklinik
Anywhere that calls itself a beer clinic is somewhere that I want to visit. I also love it for its history. This is one of the oldest still operating restaurants in Vienna, but without the pomp and ceremony of the more expensive restaurants and cafes on this list.
If you want a casual place where locals come for good food, this is perhaps one of the best restaurants in Vienna. They have Gösser beers on draft which is made by Göss brewery, the largest brewer in Austria (which also happens to be owned mostly by Heineken). They have a nice selection of light and dark beers to choose from.
The beer is tasty and the food is even tastier. They have a traditional Austrian dish of boiled beef, which doesn’t sound all that appetizing (I blame the direct translation), but is absolutely delicious. It’s served with an apple and horseradish cream and crispy potatoes.
They also have roast pork, schnitzel, goulash, and a few vegetarian options on the menu as well.
13. Cafe Sperl
This historical Vienna cafe was opened in 1880 and is known best for its coffee. The apartments above the cafe were home to artists, musicians, architects, actors, and singers. They and their friends were the most frequent visitors to Cafe Sperl in the early years. Many of them played music in the cafe for the other patrons and so started a tradition that continues today.
Every Sunday, you can visit Cafe Sperl and enjoy live musicf rom 3:30pm until closing.
Other visitors to Cafe Sperl were Archdukes Josef Ferdinand and Karl Ferdinand as well as composers like Lewinsky, Girardi, Eysler, and Kalman.
Now you can visit this historical cafe and enjoy some of the best coffee and cafe in this part of town (near Naschmarkt).
In the summertime, there is a nice outdoor patio area to sit in. Grab a melange and a slice of their apple cake for ultimate enjoyment.
14. Cafe Jelinek
There’s no history here. No one famous ate here (at least not that they’re shouting about). The cafe isn’t all that old and the interior isn’t all that fancy.
But that’s one of the reasons to love Cafe Jelinek. It has no specific reputation to uphold or history to abide by. It can create new cakes, it can have funky furniture, it can add oat milk to your melange.
Jelinek still manages to be a stylish Vienna Cafe, but its doing it with a little bit more modernity than the others on this list.
I loved their melange and their different cakes made fresh each morning. They also have a wonderful breakfast menu with full vegetarian and vegan options available.
Best of all are the weekly concerts to enjoy. They sometimes have a cover charge for the music, but it’s not usually more than $10-15. Check out what’s coming up during your trip on their website here.
15. Cafe Ritter
Whether you’re looking for a nice place to have a hearty breakfast, somewhere for a good coffee, a place that does fantastic Vienna desserts, or even a quick schnitzel, Cafe Ritter does it all (and it does almost all of it very, very well).
While I won’t be sitting down to their schnitzel anytime soon, I would come back here again and again for the breakfast menu as well as the strong and delicious coffee.
It’s definitely one of the more affordable cafes on this list of best restaurants in Vienna without being too far out of the city center.
You can get a breakfast of coffee or tea with two freshly made bread rolls and all of the jam and butter you need for $8. If you want a full breakfast with ham and eggs alongside the bread rolls, it’ll be about $12.
The desserts are pretty nice here as well, especially the kaiserschmarrn.
16. Cafe Rüdigerhof
Located a short walk from the famous Naschmarkt food market, Cafe Rüdigerhof has been serving up cold beer and hot schnitzel for decades.
In the summer months, this is a fantastic place to come for lunch or a beer because they have a huge outdoor seating area that looks out over the canal below.
It’s also a very nice (and warm!) place to be in the colder months with several dining rooms to choose from inside the cafe.
I came here for the traditional Wiener schnitzel and it was absolutely delicious. The traditional Wiener schnitzel, which is made with veal, tends to cost about $20 at most traditional cafes. If you head to more upscale restaurants you can pay a bit more.
If you want to opt for the budget-friendly version, they also have pork schnitzel which is made with the same batter and only costs $13.
The traditional Wiener schnitzel is served with roasted parsley potatoes, lemon, and a beautifully tart lingonberry jam. These are the most traditional sides you’ll find with a Wiener schnitzel and you’ll be incredibly full afterward.
17. Gasthaus “Zu den 3 Hacken”
If you want traditional Vienna food that is delicious, in a relaxed setting without having to make a reservation ahead of time or spending as much as numbers one and two on this list, then this is the Vienna restaurant for you.
There’s only so many days on your trip and if you’re researching the best restaurants in Vienna, there’s a good chance you want to make sure you eat well while you’re visiting.
The cafes on this list are great for breakfast, lunch, and afternoon snacks. The würstelstands are fantastic for late-night eats after enjoying a few beers from 1516 Brewing Company, but where can you eat for an affordable (ish, I mean, Vienna isn’t exactly a budget destination) meal in a nice restauarnt setting?
This restaurant is one of the best options for that. It’s casual but still feels like a nice, traditional Vienna restaurant. It’s probably why people like Franz Schubert used to eat here.
You can expect to pay between $12-25 per main course depending on what you order. They have all of the traditional Vienna foods mentioned throughout this article and the quality is absolutely top-notch.