Traveling to Vienna

Discussion in 'Europe' started by EmperorBatman, Apr 25, 2019.

  1. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (76) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    Grüß Gott BA’s!

    I have a research trip to Vienna coming up this June and wanted to find things to do in my free time when I’m not in the archives. I was looking for pubs and smaller breweries in the city, and especially good hang out spots for meeting locals. I will be staying in the Währing district. I know of Ottakringer and that Vienna is generally more of a wine city than it is for beer, but I certainly want to find some good spots for a drink and if there are any good places for Austria’s rather small craft industry.
     
  2. BayernTrips

    BayernTrips Aspirant (214) Feb 24, 2017 Germany
    Society

    There are a lot of new craft beer possibilities cropping up. I suggest starting at a store called "Beer Lovers." This is also the location of Muttermilch Brewery, but also is sort of the HQ of the current brewing scene - they maintain a map of the all craft brewery locations around the city, so pick one of those up before starting your journey. The Brickmakers Pub & Kitchen and Mel's Craft Beers & Diner (This neighborhood has a bunch of interesting drinking spots) are two that I particularly like though neither are Austrian. For more local vibe, check out Schweizerhaus and Gmoa Keller...
     
  3. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (4,006) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Grüß Gott

    Although not related to spending time with beer, a good walk in the park can do wonders for relaxation.

    Türkenschanzpark
     
    EuropaCanuck and EmperorBatman like this.
  4. EuropaCanuck

    EuropaCanuck Initiate (25) May 29, 2019 Austria

    Servus!

    Vienna's been exploding these past five years. As @BayernTrips mentioned, BeerLovers is a good place to start. I second his other choices as well. Schweizerhaus is one of the best beer gardens in Austria, and Gmoa Keller is a great pick for a traditional Wirtshaus close to the center of town.

    Smaller breweries:
    Xaver (near Ottakringer). The smallest in the city. Only open Friday PM and Saturday AM.
    L4 (in Margarethen). Just opened. Stellar so far.
    Beaver Brewing Co. (in Alsergrund, 9th district). Very American vibe if you're missing craft beer and burgers/pulled pork.
    Medl-Bräu (in Penzing, 14th district). Best lagers and Hefeweizen outside of Bavaria. Woefully underrated.

    Taprooms:
    Hawidere (15th district). Former Beisl; great blend of traditional offerings with craft. Also home of "Collabs," a wandering brewery.
    Fassldippler (near the Hbf ... 5th district, I think). Best selection of all-Austrian beers at any taproom in Vienna.
    Ammutson (in the 6th, just of Mariahilfer Str.). A bit on the pricey side, but excellent selection of cutting-edge stuff from around Europe.

    That's a start. By now, you've probably discovered plenty of other places. I have lived here off and on for the past several years, so feel free to hit me up with more questions. Enjoy your Forschungsreise!
     
  5. pbrian

    pbrian Defender (663) Feb 8, 2001 Connecticut

    I'm heading to Vienna on Monday and will print this thread for reference! Thanks guys!
     
  6. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,185) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    Has all of the growth been in what would be termed "craft" beer? If so, is it mostly hoppy beers (e.g., IPAs)?

    Cheers!
     
  7. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (76) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    From my assessment, I would say that while the craft beer "explosion" in Vienna includes pale ales and IPAs, many brewers also make Vienna Lagers, Helles, and Pilsners. I would say that lagers tend to be more prominent and therefore get more of a market share than they do in many parts of the US, and the quality of these lagers is also fairly high as well comparatively speaking.

    I suspect a lot of it has to do with the way brewers over there are trained (mostly in lager brewing), as well as what Austrian consumers tend to expect, which is lager under the roof of Austrian Märzen, Vienna Lager, Helles, and Pilsner. Conversely, their ales tend to be not as great as in the United States - there is, I think, still some inexperience in this regarding. There are some issues with off-flavors at certain breweries, or not using hops to their maximum effect.

    The one major stumbling block for Austrian craft beer is the preset preferences of Otto Normalverbraucher (the daily consumer personified) - most beer drinkers prefer their drink light, cheap, and sold in quantity. Then that is overlayed with regionally-based preferences (The Viennese like Ottakringer, Salzburgers prefer Stiegl, and so on), although that is changing with younger generations who just pick and choose what they want (and what is cheapest). Craft beer is expensive and few breweries have a historical tie with the region in which they are brewing their beer. Also, the industrial breweries are just simply high quality and deeply experienced anyway.
     
  8. pbrian

    pbrian Defender (663) Feb 8, 2001 Connecticut

    I have been in Vienna for two days now and have yet to see anything other than “traditional” Austrian styles, Helles, Marzen (which have all been light), Pilsner, Dunkel, Hefes, etc. Granted, I’ve been mostly in the touristy places, it there’s been no penetration of craft at this level. Will report more when I get back, excuse me while I have another Gosser while waiting for my wife and daughter to get ready. Oh, but I have had many tasty Basil Smash’s! Why isn’t this drink popular in the US???
     
  9. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (76) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    If you want craft in the touristy district (The 1st District or “Inner-City”), try the 1516. It’s a guys’ pub though, I don’t think your wife and daughter would be comfortable with how the waitresses are dressed over there!
     
  10. pbrian

    pbrian Defender (663) Feb 8, 2001 Connecticut

    Ha, went there tonight, my daughter is 20 and studying here for a semester, and wife is thick skinned, enjoyed the place and beer was good! Finally, some hops were found in Vienna.
     
  11. mkarpouzie

    mkarpouzie Initiate (66) Feb 6, 2010 Pennsylvania

    I'll be in Vienna in two weeks. These posts are helpful.

    I'm not looking for American style craft beer while I'm there, but some place that takes a craft approach to Austrian beers (if this exists). There was a German brewer at Max's in Baltimore a few years ago who was taking this approach in Germany.

    Any ideas?
     
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  12. EmperorBatman

    EmperorBatman Initiate (76) Mar 16, 2018 District of Columbia

    I’m curious about what you mean by this distinction. Like traditional styles, but using modern hops, or traditional styles brewed the traditional way, but by younger and smaller-scale breweries?

    Güsswerk from Salzburg brews a lot of traditional and “modern” styles, specifically though they have a Granitbier (a type of ale with a unique medieval Austrian brewing process that consists of suspending hot granite stones into the brewing vat to increase the temperature), as well as a Vienna Lager. I don’t find Gusswerk to be the best though.

    There’s also Hofstetten from Upper-Austria that has a similar thing with granite beer and what they purport to be the original recipe for the beer served at the first Oktoberfest in 1810.

    Many Upper-Austrians speak highly of Freistädter Bier, from the small town of Freistadt, but it’s hard to find (likely only at bottle shops or the region around Freistadt).

    Trumer is a popular quasi-craft offering, brewing a delicious Pilsner as well as also Märzen, Zwickl, and Radler. Relatively easy to find in shops, and it is also well-advertised at the restaurants that serve it (Gmoa Keller is one of them, but really a lot of hipster restaurants and bars also sell it too).

    Touristy as hell, but Salm-Bräu has decent traditional choices brewed at their Garten near the Belvedere Palace.