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Viennese Platter - Vienna

Viennese Platter

Palatschinkenpfandl: Pancakes and much more typical Austrian specialities Review

The name of this restaurant tends to get stuck somewhere between your tongue and your throat but the food and drinks it serves slide down effortlessly. It serves lots of specifically Austrian main courses but is most widely known for its pancakes, deserts and milkshakes. The pancakes are savoury and sweet and you can order either half or full portions which is a real plus. It's situated about halfway between Stephansdom and Schwedenplatz which makes it easily accessible from anywhere in the city centre. As we were a large VT party we sat outside and were allowed to occupy our tables without any bother for about five hours. Service was exceptionally friendly and the ambience on the street terrace was really pleasant.

Open from 10.00 a.m. to midnight

Favorite Dish: I had a savoury cheese and bacon pancake with salad for my main course which was tasty but not exceptional in any way. My desert, on the other hand, (which I ordered a full portion of), was exceptional in most ways possible to food. This 'Viennese Platter' consisted of three pancakes with three different fillings served with chocolate sauce, custard and cream. You can see it in the photograph and rather than lapse into purple prose I will settle for saying it tastes even better than it looks.

Address: Koellnerhofgasse 4, Wien

Comparison: less expensive than average

Directions: Halfway betweenStephansdom and Schwedenplatz close to Fleischmarkt

Phone: 01 513 82 18

Price: US$21-30

Rating: 4

Theme: German/Austrian

Website: http://www.palatschinken.at

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Jun 9, 2007
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Happy diners at the Schottenkeller - Vienna

Happy diners at the Schottenkeller

Schottenkeller: Cellars Part 2 :

This was the first resataurant I sampled in Vienna and I was very impressed. This is a Keller also, but you only go down one flight of stairs and it has a warm and cosy ambience. We had dinner here on arrival in Vienna on Saturday night. Only a few steps away from where we were straying at the Schottenstift, it's location is perfect, overlooking Freyung, one of Vienna's most atmospheric squares. Here we had a set menu also but with several choices in all courses. Garlic or liver-dumpling soup: chicken, fish, turkey or pork medallions in a gorgonzola sauce. Deserts were sumptuous; - sweet dumplings with chestnut puree; pancakes with chocolate sauce; strudel with baked cream cheese and vanilla sauce. Wine and water included the cost of this feast came to EUR 22. No wonder I was impressed.

On June 4th 2007 I had the pleasure of revisiting the Schottenkeller with some of my VT friends. We had dinner, this time outside on the pavement on a warm evening, but otherwise,everything was just the same. This time I had the 'Grostl' chicken, a dish of chicken, bacon, onion and roast potatoes all tossed together in a savoury taste-bomb. Service is friendly and unobtrusive and main courses are priced well under EUR 10. Definitely one of the best-value restaurants in Vienna

Favorite Dish: The pork medallions served in gorgonzola sauce were simply delicious. They were accompanied by green noodles and salad , an eclectic blend of flavours and textures. My desert, the cream cheese strudel was also absolutely gorgeous. It looked more like a mille feuille to me with paper thin layers of pastry surrounding the yummy cream cheese.

Address: A-1010 Wien Freyung 6/Schottenkeller

Comparison: less expensive than average

Directions: Just on the entrance to Freyung as you turn the corner from Schottengasse.

Other Contact: schottenkeller@wienerwald.com

Phone: +43.(0)50.1516116

Price: US$21-30

Rating: 5

Theme: German/Austrian

Website: http://www.wienerwald.com

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Jun 9, 2007
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Kebab Stand for al-fresco lunches - Vienna

Kebab Stand for al-fresco lunches

Kebab Stand: Al Fresco Dining- popular in Vienna

All round vienna are these and other food stalls where you can have a quick lunch or snack on the hoof. Standing room is provided with little stands to rest your food on and I was surprised by the numbers of suits and briefcases who'd accompanied their owners.Obviously the better stands have a reputation with the local business community and this one at Scwedenplatz where Michael and I had lunch was very busy indeed.

Favorite Dish: The joint of meat in the photograph is turkey. How they get it into that shape on the skewer I have no idea but it tasted really good. The owner just cuts skelps off it adds some salad and dressing and hey presto a wholesome tasty lunch served in about one minute flat. You can choose to have it on a pitta bread or a plate. We chose the plaate and got a large roll also. As with most of the meals I got in Vienna the portion was so generous I couldn't finish it.

Address: At Schwedenplatz and all over the city

Comparison: least expensive

Price: less than US$10

Rating: 4

Theme: Street Vendor

Website: http://www.vienna.info

Review Helpfulness: 4 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Dec 31, 2006
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Dining in the depths of the Melkstiftkeller - Vienna

Dining in the depths of the Melkstiftkeller

Melkstiftkeller: Cellars Part 3:

The monastery at melk has a restaurant in Vienna also, just around the corner from their rival Benedictine community at the Schottenstift. It's another cellar with nothing too much to differentiate it from the two keller restaurants I have already described. These restaurants are undoubtedly atmospheric but after the first one or two you begin to grow tired of them. This one is somewhere between Augustinerkeller and Schottenkeller in terms of how far you descend and it was alo very lively. A perfect place for large groups, there was more than one noisy party going on, the largest one seperated from the main restaurant by an intriguing velvet curtain. There was something theatrical about the whole place especially on the waiters part who served with many flourishes and teetering trays. The food here is plain but I would reccomend it because like the other Kellers it is extremely reasonably priced and you certainly will not come away hungry.

Favorite Dish: The nicest thing I ate at this restaurant was roast chicken. A simple old-fashioned dish with crispy golden skin and deliciosly moist breast. Nothing to overexcite the tastebuds but wholesome and delicious.

Address: Schottengasse 3

Comparison: less expensive than average

Directions: Around the corner from Freyung.

Phone: 533 5530

Price: US$11-20

Rating: 3

Theme: German/Austrian

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Dec 31, 2006
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At Cafe Central gazing in awe at my Dobostorte - Vienna

At Cafe Central gazing in awe at my Dobostorte

Cafe Central: Sampling Cafe Society Cafe Central Review

Cafe Central is an institution in Vienna with a long tradition and famous regulars like Trotsky. This was where I had my first VT meeting with Vienna members Alusru and Globetrot and I think the stimulating discussion we had there was well in keeping with Cafe Central tradition. This was also my first introduction to Austrian cakes so all in all it was a completely pleasurable experience. At around 3.30 a distinguished looking man in dress suit opened the Grand piano and began to play. I was happy beforehand but this was definitely the icing on my dobostorte. The whole atmosphere of gentility and bonhomie in Cafe Central was everything I had expected and more.The impeccably dressed waiters were busy but friendly and at no time made any effort to hurry you up. You can have lunch and snacks here as well as coffee and I had the first soup I actually liked in Vienna. A potato soup with chunks of bacon and not a dumpling in sight.

Favorite Dish: My favourite dish here is without doubt the exquisite gastronomical experience also known as the Dobostorte. About five thin layers of biscuit sponge and caramel/chocolate frosting with a carmelised toffee-type glaze on top. Further words fail me - come to Vienna and try it for yourself !

Address: Herrengasse 14

Comparison: about average

Directions: On Herrengasse between Freyung and Michaelerplatz.

Price: US$11-20

Rating: 5

Theme: Coffeehouse

Website: http://www.ferstel.at

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Dec 31, 2006
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Queuing for lunchat Cafe Hofburg - Vienna

Queuing for lunchat Cafe Hofburg

Cafe Hofburg: Imperial Rip-Off !

On Sunday, after a sung mass at Augustinerkirche and a leisurely stroll round the Hofburg, lunchat the cafe seemed like quite a good idea. It's not the kind of place I would opt for myself but the person organising our trip had booked it so I didn't have much choice. We were offered no choice inside and the set three course lunch consisted of lukewarm bouillon, boiled beef with what looked like sauuerkraut and a large inedible dumpling. Desert was an interesting concoction: a large plate filled stips of torn doughnut - like cake plus a bowl of stewed apple and stewed damsons. The idea was to dip the cake in the fruit and it was quite tasty. Apple Juice was 3.60 and coffee, 3.70. This, plus the set lunch price of EUR 25 was a total rip-off for a very mediocre lunch. The service was friendly but ssssssssslllllllloooooooooooowwwwwwwwwww. A plus to eating here is the obviously interesting surroundings. For example, a trip to the toilet will take you via the shop for the Imperial Apartments.

Favorite Dish: The only dish I would reccomend here is the Kaiserschmarren. This, I discovered later in the week from my VT friends, is the name of the desert we had got. It was very tasty and the contrast between the sweet confectionary and the tart fruit was interesting. Otherwise, the food was uninspiring and if I never see another dumpling I will be very happy indeed.

Address: Hofburg Palace.

Comparison: more expensive than average

Directions: Inside the Michaelerplatz gate opposite the large statues in the central courtyard

Other Contact: hofburg@cafe-wien.at

Price: US$31-40

Rating: 2

Theme: German/Austrian

Website: http://www.cafe-wien.at

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Dec 31, 2006
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Fiddler entertaining diners at  Augustinerkeller - Vienna

Fiddler entertaining diners at Augustinerkeller

Augustinerkeller: How Low Can You Go ?

Augustinerkeller is situated at Sonnenfelsgasse 3, about a four minute walk from Stepansdom. The concept of the Keller/Cellar restaurant is very popular in Vienna but this one outkellers them all. From street level you descend by a series of steep staircases, lower and lower into what seems like the very bowels of the earth. When we finally arrived at the lower cellar, where we were to eat, I must confess I made a careful note of my escape route should I become overwhelmed at being so far inderground. This part of the cellar has stonework dating from 1100 and baroque vaulting added later. Music is provided by trad musicians who play at your table if you make a small contribution . It's definitely quite touristy but the violin and accordian playing was of a very high standard and most enjoyable.

Favorite Dish: My favourite dish here was the Schweinsschnitzel, which I actually thought was veal but turned out to be pork. It was absolutely delicious and I got twice as much as I could eat, two large portions of the breaded meat. The accompanying dish is the traditional cold potato salad but I opted for fried potatoes instead. For desert we had the obligatory warm apple strudel with vanilla sauce. The main course was EUR 8.30, the desert, EUR 3.60. Water and wine was also very reasonably priced but my wine-drinking friends were not impressed by the quality of the house plonk.

Address: Sonnenfelgasse 3

Comparison: less expensive than average

Directions: About four or five minute walk from Stephansdom

Phone: 512 67 77

Price: US$11-20

Rating: 3

Theme: German/Austrian

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Dec 31, 2006
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