Viennese Coffee Culture: My Favorites

Victoria Rice
December 21, 2017

The Viennese and I especially agree on one certain thing: coffee is much more than a beverage. It is a way to wake up in the morning, a way to catch up with friends, and (for some) a necessity for any good day. Vienna’s coffee culture was one of the many things that drew me to this beautiful city. Since the beginning of the semester, I have been strategically visiting different coffee shops each week in a hunt to find the best. Listed here are the best coffee shops I have had the chance to visit while living in Vienna.

Vollpension (Schleifmühlgasse 16)

I struck gold with the very first coffee house I visited back in August! After our intensive German session that day, my friends and I set out to find coffee. On our way out of the IES Abroad building, we spoke to one of the institute’s German professors and she enthusiastically recommended we try Vollpension. A short walk from the IES Abroad Vienna palace, we easily found the café. It was a wonderful experience. I had a mélange and piece of cake. The wonderful quirk of this café is that it is owned, managed, and supplied by older women who enjoy baking. The love the women have for what they do is evident in the quality of the goods they produce. If you could only visit one café in Vienna, I would recommend Vollpension.

CoffeePirates (Spitalgasse 17)

CoffeePirates had the best latte I found in Vienna! (I have also heard great things about their chai.) It is across the street from Universitat Wien and is always full of students. They roast their own coffee in house and sell a small selection of pastries and sandwiches. It certainly does not have the old-fashioned Viennese coffeehouse feel but if you are looking for a place modern place to have a delicious coffee and study or meet with friends, this is the shop for you!

Palmenhaus (Burggarten 1)

Most certainly the most Instagram-able place to get coffee on this list, Palmenhaus is an experience. This café is an excellent location: behind the Albertina and on the edge of the Burggarten. The building was erected in the early nineteenth century and houses a butterfly garden in the left wing, a greenhouse in the right wing, and the café in the center. Palmenhaus is certainly not the type of café where one would might go to study but rather a classy brunch establishment where one might enjoy a light meal and cappuccino with friends. 

Phil (Gumpendorferstr. 10-12)

Phil is a reoccurring favorite coffee house among my friends. It quickly became our hangout and study spot due to its delicious coffee and sandwiches and ample seating. The coffee shop sells more than coffee—most of what lies inside of the shop is for sale, including shelves upon shelves of books and all of the furniture. Phil is a frequented meeting location by the Viennese so I would recommend going during a lull time in order to get prime seating.

Simply Raw Bakery (Drahtgasse 2)

The adorable décor and outside seating of Simply Raw Bakery drew us in. I really enjoyed this shop because not only do they serve good quality baked goods and coffee but they also accommodate all eating restrictions such as vegan, raw, organic, and gluten free. Not only were the servers incredibly nice but I loved the attention to detail that is put into their products. I found it delightful that they had “frosted” the ice cubes in my iced coffee with sugar. This review is not at all sugar-coated but my experience there was certainly sweet.

WerkzeugH (Schönbrunner Straße 61)

This late afternoon and nighttime coffee café and casual bar has the youngest clientele of all of the places on this list. Slightly tucked away in the fifth district, I stumbled upon it due to its stellar reviews. The space is comfortable, inviting, and perfect for an evening spent talking with friends. The atmosphere has a relaxed industrial-overtaken-by-nature type of feel. I would recommend as a late-afternoon or early-evening venue to talk or study with friends. 

Donuteria (Seilerstätte 30)

Technically, this shop is not a coffee house but I feel it deserves an honorable mention! Donuteria is only a couple minutes from the IES Abroad Vienna palace. It has become something of a guilty pleasure for me. As the name suggests, they primarily sell donuts and coffee. Unlike other donut places (Dunkin Donuts exists in Austria), Donuteria has specialty donuts specific to Austria including their Styria pumpkin oil donut, the Mozart donut, and the classic Sacher donut.

Victoria Rice

<p>A small town Florida girl, my passion for anthropology took me to the bustling hub that is Atlanta, Georgia and is now taking me to the antiquated and beautiful Vienna, Austria. Compelled to write anecdotes and real-life narratives, blogging will be my diary as I discover and embark on a caffeine fueled and culturally invigorating adventure far from any that I have experienced.</p>

2017 Fall
Home University:
Emory University
Clewiston, FL
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