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Oct 15, 2012 04:16 PM

Wiener Schnitzel in Vienna, Christmas tradition, and one other question

Wiener Schitzel (WS) - I've seen mulitple posts on traditional food in Vienna, but would like to narrow down 2-3 WS that I must eat while I'm there. If really all of the WS and its fixings more or less taste the same at a respectable beisl, then I guess I won't eat WS more than once on a 5-day visit given how many other classic dishes Sturmi has described on previous posts, but I'm hoping those who have strong views on WS will speak up.

I gather Figmuller uses pork, which kind of puts me off to begin with, even if they say they're the "original". I'm not planning on going there, unless people think it's better than most/all veal based WS and it's a must-eat on my trip.

Christmas Tradition - I hear carp on Christmas Eve and goose on Christmas Day lunch. Any suggestions for either? I understand I may be limited to expensive hotel restaurants; that's fine, but would like to know what the best of the options is for each.

The one other question I have is - do people have an opinion on Grunauer, Eckel, or Zu Den 3 Hacken?

Thanks in advance!!

PS - I plan on trekking around to find Beuschl at Kutschker44 and Tafelspitz at Plachutta, in addition to going to Gmoakeller as that seems to be an all-around offal/game/classic dish well-liked spot. Thanks to Sturmi and others in helping shape my meal plan thus far, which also includes Steirereck (the restaurant).

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  1. First the carp: The Hotel Bristol, now operated by the family owning the Sacher hotel, is offering a Christmas eve menu with carp:

    But, just duck and no goose on Christmas day...

    Also Hotel Sacher has no goose for Christmas day:

    But wait, here is a real Christmas goose AND carp on Christmas Eve !

    The Vienna Marriott has a great tradition of sunday brunches, which are also popular with the locals. So their Christmas Eve Buffet will be a great event, and even at a reasonable price: 40,- Euro, just compare this to the 159,- Euro at Sacher...

    RE: Beuschl and other offal:
    Do not forget Gasthaus Wolf, Gasthaus Stern, Zur goldenen Kugel and Zum Reznicek !
    Just read the menu of Stern for a real yummy taste:

    7 Replies
    1. re: Sturmi

      I forgot to mention the WS: many restaurants will offer a WS made from veal (the "real" thing) as well as a "Schweinswiener" made from pork. Other variations are also WS made from chicken or turkey, as well as an interesting variation: a kind of "schnitzel" made by breading and frying boiled beef: this will be called "Gebackenes Beinfleisch" or "Gebackenes Bruckfleisch"

      Beisl specializing in these variations are:
      Gasthaus Pöschl,
      Gasthaus Woraczicky and
      Haas Beisl

      Another old restaurant has recently reopened with a new name and focus on Austrian cuisine:
      The Restaurant Edelhof:
      The chef Sebastian Bramer has worked in several of the high-end places and produces reliable quality at moderate price levels. And yes, he always serves Wiener Schnitzel made from veal...

      1. re: Sturmi

        Sturmi - Thank you for your help. If you had to pick two Gasthaus and one more upscale old fashioned traditional, doesn't matter what neighborhood, what would they be?

        From some of your previous posts, I guess Shwarzes Kameel would be the more upscale old fashioned pick?

        Thanks again!

        1. re: ghsu

          Yes and no. The ambiente and interior of Schwarzes Kameel are pure fin-de-siecle, but the kitchen is now quite inconsistent ...

          MAybe you should just go there for lunch or for a quick snack of canapés, just to sample the unique atmosphere, and go somewhere else for a high-end dinner, e.g. Walter Bauer, Vestibül, Anna Sacher or Vincent (who has now three toques by Gault Millau)

          But IMHO Vetsibül still has the best combination of ambiente and Viennese cuisine with a modern twist:

          1. re: Sturmi

            I second Gasthaus Wolf, in my opinion one of the best Beuschel in town. he uses a bit more veggies in it than others, but it´s great.
   - I know the homepage is shit, but it´s worth it, especially if you want traditional viennese offal which is kind of his speciallity.

            In my opinion "zu den 3 Hacken" is not that good, although the ambiance is very traditional,

            I really like Gmoa Keller, especially their "Blunzn Gröstl" - roasted bloodsausage. (what makes it a bit funny is that there´s a huge blood "painting" by one of the main actors of Austrias Actionist movement, Hermann Nitsch in the back of the restaurant. ;-
            )also, Konzerthaus and Musikverein are very close, so you could attend a concert, and have some food there before or afterwards...

            1. re: tobiask

              @tobiask: Thank you for coming back to the original question, which was for two beisl and one high-end dinner !

              @ghsu: Sorry for giving only incomplete answers so far, I was just posting in short breaks of my work and focussed on parts of your questions only...

              So: I agree with tobiask that Gasthaus Wolf and Gmoakeller would be great choices for the two Gasthaus type places !! (And I also agree that Zu den 3 Hacken is one of the many city beisl which slowly deteriorate into just another tourist trap...)

              BTW: Gasthaus Wolf is something really special, very popular, but very small, and so you will have to get a reservation in time, and ask for a "non-smoing" table...

              Steirereck is the first choice for a high-end dinner, but needs also reservation many weeks, better months, in advance. If you do not get your favorite date, Vestibül is a great alternative, with much more beautiful ambiente than Steirereck, decent food, and a lower price range...

              But you also asked about Grünauer and Eckel. We never had dinner at Grünauer, but we are regulars at Eckel, which is something special: a decent bourgeois restaurant with high quality food classics at fair price levels, and with a spectacular service....

              If you manage to eat at Wolf, Eckel, Steirereck and Gmoakeller you would have in summary a real unique dining experience, something you will tell your grandchildren's about !

              1. re: Sturmi

                So excited to have booked my Girlfriend's 40th birthday dinner at Vestibul. I will report back. I just need to sift through all these suggestions to figure out our other meals. Will definitely need to try WS preferably someplace where the poultry versions are good as my GF doesn't eat beef or pork.

                1. re: Teal

                  as far as I know, the main reason we have Schnitzel made from poultry, are cheap, disgusting fast food "Schnitzel" places mostly operated by our muslim minority. (veal -to expensive, pork - not allowed) and I can´t think of ANY place, worth recommending.

                  Instead, if I was your girlfriend, I would go for a dish called "steirischer Backhendlsalat", you can get it in most Beisl mentioned above, and it´s a typical austrian (styrian) dish that, in a way, is related to the Schitzel.