Vienna – Innere Stadt – some cool places to drink in the centre

This isn’t a guide, just some places I liked in the short time I was in town. I’m sure there are heaps more, and some of them are already on my map.

Kaffee Alt Wien (Intermediate A), 9 Bäckerstraße,, open till 2am

Despite the name I would describe this more as a pub than a café, although they are known for their Apfelstrudel and many come here to eat lunch.

Not only is this a pub, it’s a pub where smoking is allowed, even by the bartenders! Smoking in pubs is banned in Austria but they are deliberately flouting the rules and getting away with it. as a libertarian, I don’t have a problem with it. I think people should have the choice and there should be places where you can indulge your vices, even if I’ve given up myself.

Due to the bar’s popularity (you’ll be lucky to find a table or chair after dinner time) it’s very smoky which I appreciate isn’t for everyone. But if you’re a smoker, it’s heaven.

It’s also very friendly. I got chatting with a few customers and staff quite easily.

Labstelle (High Intermediate B+), 6 Lugeck,

I only popped in for a Negroni but they have a Michelin Bib Gourmand for their food which is awarded for good quality and good value cooking.

They usually have Carpano Antica Formula Vermouth for the Negroni, which is a sign of a quality establishment, but they’d run out on this occasion, so I tried the local Burschik vermouth which is a bit sweeter but works well. Total cost €11.

After drinking at Labstelle or Kaffee Alt Wien, you might be in the mood for a late night hot dog just along the road. The Würstelstand am Hohen at 1 Markt Hoher Markt is open daily from 9am–4am (see previous post).

Albertinapassage Dinner Club (High Intermediate B+), Opernring/Operngasse,

This jazz and soul club is located in a converted subway passage, right outside the Opera. You can see the entrance on the corner in this picture.

I got a seat at the bar easily enough but the booth tables need to be reserved. They do a decent Negroni (B+) and the live act, a female soul singer from the US, was really good.

Frommers says the food is fantastic, but expensive. The live music goes on until midnight when the DJs take over. There’s no cover charge.

The party district of Vienna is centreed on the streets around St. Rupert’s church, such as Seitenstettengasse. The area is known as the Bermuda Triangle (Bermudadreieck) because people often go missing after drinking there!

Now for a spot of shopping…

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