3 Days in Graz, Austria
After doing some research on here and Tripadvisor, I plan to hit my hotel restaurant (Hotel Wiesler) for their breakfast buffet, Frankowitch for their great looking brotchen and Cafe Edegger-Tax for their pastries and historic interior. Other than that, I'm at a loss. Wondering if any of you have passed through recently and can recommend a really good local restaurant with maybe some modern touches to the traditionally stodgy mittel-European fare.
I'm not going to Graz to eat Italian food, I do want things like pumpkin soup and pork medallions with spaetzle, but maybe a little lighter, maybe with the addition of some non-traditional spices, etc.
Just to follow up: We ended up eating at Frankowitsch Delicatessen, Der Steirer and our hotel restaurant: Speisesaal.
By far, Der Steirer was our best meal of the trip. Very delicious, hearty Styrian chicken stew with bacon, pumpkin soup and creme brulee. My wife had a fantastic dessert featuring cooked cream topped with Styrian Pumpkin seed oil. The only complaint was that (like in most places in the city) the smoking section wasn't really closed off from the rest of the restaurant, so the smoke wafted over to our room a little bit and the trip to the washroom made me feel faint and queasy.
The sandwiches at Frankowitsch were good, but the service was rather hurried and unfriendly. We found the people on the hauptplatz side of the river quite unfriendly as a group and as a result, didn't really enjoy Graz like we could have. Mostly scowling older people (why, we couldn't figure out)
The vibe on our hotel's side of the river was much nicer, friendlier and quite young and trendy. The restaurant at our hotel - Wiesler (Speisesaal) was ok. The appetizers, drinks and service were great, but the burgers were disappointing. The patties might have been made of organic Austrian beef, but they were oversalted and cooked from frozen. We found them rather tough.
Our breakfast buffet at the Wiesler was quite nice, you did get value for the 15 Eur price tag (fresh ham off the bone, local homemade yogourts and a fantastic local hard cheese that tasted like Appenzeller)
Cafe Edegger Tax was decent too. Luckily our server was a very friendly young college age girl. Same issues with cigarette smoke. Our apple strudel with marzipan was very good, it came in a "lake" of vanilla sauce and was quite reasonably priced too.
Hi Currycue -
I've been a guest lecturer at the University in Graz over the years, and will second or third the comments about St. Michael.
I would take the opportunity to try the local versions of Stelze, or spiraled Ham Hock (photo), and the Knödel, or mixed dumplings. One alone can be a meal on it's own.
If I may, what time of year are you travelling there ?
Thank you for the update.
The weather changes right about then. It will either be nice and warm, or getting cold (and smoggy).
As you mention, Graz has a long history with the Slovenes and Italy: More Mediterranean than Alpine, especially with the local cooking.
I hope you have a safe and enjoyable trip !