Vienna may not be as reputed for its cuisine as Paris or Rome are, but it remains one of Europe's leading capitals for fine dining. It's diverse, too, with something for all tastes and moods. You'll not only find several Michelin-starred restaurants and creative contemporary tables in the Austrian capital; there are plenty of options for a family-friendly dinner, plant-based meal, or a romantic date night. Keep reading for the 10 best restaurants in Vienna for every type of eater.
Does the idea of tasting contemporary Austrian cuisine in a greenery-filled setting appeal to you? If so, lunch or dinner at this acclaimed Michelin-starred restaurant may be in order. Plunged in the middle of Stadtpark (city park), Steirereck made the cut for the World's 50 Best Restaurants list in recent years. The glass-heavy dining room and ample outdoor terrace is ideal for a special spring or summer meal.
You can expect the menu to change with the seasons, but the recent sample menu offers dishes such as salmon trout with young peas, kohlrabi, and Scottish lovage; soup of white asparagus with bergamot, hop shoots, and lardo; "best end" of lamb with green asparagus, nasturtium, and sungold; and local Austrian duck with fennel, blood orange, and tamarind.
Six and seven-course tasting menus offer an excellent way to explore the creative cuisine, and the lunch menus offer good value. Vegetarians and vegans will find plenty to eat here, as there are numerous dishes that place seasonal produce at the center of the show. Meanwhile, the wine list is extensive and superb, curated by award-winning chef-sommelier René Antrag.
This solidly traditional Austrian restaurant in the city center is widely known for its superb Wiener Schnitzel. For a classic lunch, opt for the veal Schnitzel served with warm potato salad. Parisian-style Cordon Bleu, pork or turkey-based schnitzel, and schnitzel with garlic and mushrooms also make tasty main courses. Feeling a bit adventurous? Try the "Mexican-style" schnitzel—garnished with paprika, mushrooms, and ham—or the "Spaghetti Bolognese" version.
Vegetarians also have several choices, including breaded and baked cheese, zucchini or mushrooms (served with salad and/or tartar sauce), and house soups and salads. Ask the servers when in doubt.
In close reach of Stephansplatz and the dramatic St. Stephens Cathedral, Lugeck is a relatively affordable choice when you want to try typical Austrian dishes with a creative twist.
Opened with the aim of reviving Viennese tavern culture and ushering it into the modern age, Lugeck offers a broad menu that features classics such as Tafelspitz (beef or veal with potatoes) and Wiener Schnitzel. Meanwhile, seasonal menu items focus on fresh produce and local products, with dishes like Viennese soup pot with semolina dumplings; piroshkies (potato dumplings) with curd cheese, sour cream, and walnut butter; and steak tartare with avocado. Fresh fish also features prominently on the menu.
Lunch and dinner are served with the restaurant's homemade bread and include typical Viennese coffee at the end of the meal.
For Local Wine & Nibbles: Buschenschank Stift St. Peter Wine Tavern
The Austrian capital is one of Europe's leading wine producers. To taste some of the finest in a convivial and historic setting, head to one of Vienna's oldest winery restaurants (heurigen): the Buschenschank Stift St. Peter Wine Tavern.
Technically located in the adjacent town of Oberlaa—part of greater Vienna—the wine tavern offers an authentic and easy getaway from the noise and crowds of the city center. Enjoy a glass or two of house wine from its grounds, alongside a plate of Austrian cheeses, homemade bread, sausages, charcuterie, and potato salads.
During the warmer months, sampling the tavern's house Konventwine (literally, convent wine) or a crisp glass of Riesling on the wide, grassy terrace can be idyllic. The tavern is easily accessed by tram from the city center.
Vienna may be landlocked, but that doesn't mean it lacks high-quality seafood. Perched on the banks of the River Danube, the Fischrestaurant Kornat is one of the capital's best destinations for ultra-fresh fish.
Tuck into a plate of Fine de Clair oysters, accompanied with pumpernickel bread and a glass of crisp white wine from greater Vienna. Or try the lobster, tuna tartar, crab cakes, or fresh filleted catch of the day. Pasta dishes such as rose shrimp risotto and fish stews like bouillabaisse round out the offering.
If you're not in the mood for a formal sit-down lunch or dinner, the onsite wine bar offers a more casual dining (and tasting) experience.
Vegetarians and vegans, take note of this address in close reach of the Museumsquartier (Museums district). Widely considered one of Vienna's best tables for plant-based dining, Tian Bistro am Spittelberg is especially popular for its "Sharing Chef's Garden" concept. The chefs prepare a surprise tasting menu composed of the restaurant's best dishes (all-vegan options are possible) for a minimum of two guests.
If you'd rather go à la carte, that's entirely possible as well. Sample dishes on the online menu include tian tartar with cornbread and wild garlic mayonnaise, traditional Austrian cheese dumpling soup, and ricotta gnocchi with white asparagus and green salad.
Looking for the perfect spot for a romantic dinner? This stunning dining room serves French-style cuisine with a creative Austrian twist—and with a Michelin star under its belt, it's safe to say the cooking is among the city's best, too.
Located on the 7th floor of the Grand Hotel Wien, the restaurant features a panoramic terrace whose coveted tables offer views over the city's rooftops. Inside, soft lighting and careful attention to detail make an ideal setting for a special occasion. The seasonal menus are known for their fresh local ingredients and interesting interpretations of French and Austrian classic dishes.
If dinner is out of range, consider a romantic mid-day meal on the sunny terrace; the "Grand Lunch" is a relatively affordable three-course meal complete with red and white wine pairings.
For a decadent but relaxed breakfast in the city center, Ulrich ticks all the boxes. Stylish, contemporary, and friendly, the place is almost always packed, especially in the summer months when the large, sunny outdoor terrace draws in patrons.
The full breakfasts are generous spreads that include eggs, homemade bread, fruit, pastries, freshly squeezed juice, coffee, yogurt with granola, cheese, smoked salmon, and chive butter. Breakfast sandwiches, omelettes, avocado toast, and shakshuka (eggs with spicy tomato sauce and toast) are other good options.
For a special occasion or treat, try a "Boozy Breakfast" drink: Mimosa, "Bloody Ulrich" cocktail (a twist on the Bloody Mary), or espresso martini. Ulrich also offers an excellent two or three-course lunch menu that's perfect for tight budgets, and includes options for non-meat eaters.
Looking to relax over a sit-down meal while keeping the kids fed and entertained? Dschungel Café (Jungle Café) certainly fits the bill.
Located across the street from the Zoom Children's Museum, the café overlooks the courtyard of the MuseumsQuartier area. Kids have plenty of space to run around and play, and parents don't have to worry about fellow patrons shooting irritated and pointed looks their way.
Young family members can enjoy dishes such as hamburgers and hot dogs, or small portions of schnitzel and potato salad. Adults can choose from a seasonally refreshed choice of soups, salads, and sandwiches, or opt for hot dishes like lasagne and halloumi burgers.
Opened in 1876 and frequented by famous figures such as Sigmund Freud and Leon Trotsky, Café Central is a historic coffeehouse that serves lunch, dinner, dessert, and hot drinks. It's housed within the Palais Ferstel, a stunning 19th-century mansion whose architecture is inspired by Venetian buildings from the medieval period.
While you can find a selection of excellent typical Viennese dishes on the menu here—from Wiener Schnitzel to goulash, potato soup, and fresh asparagus—we recommend coming for afternoon tea or coffee and pastries. The café's own pastry chefs whip up a variety of delicious house treats, and this is a fantastic place to try Viennese coffee specialties such as a "Melange" (similar to a cappuccino but topped with whipped cream).
Settle in for apple strudel and coffee, or for an enormous Viennese-style breakfast complete with fresh croissants, eggs, fruit, and a hot drink. The restaurant also offers a good wine list.