One of the most authentic, as it has largely remained unchanged since opening in 1880, is Cafe Sperl—a time capsule of an establishment that emulates an elegant, yet worn around the edges, charm.
The special atmosphere of Sperl is created by a blend of the soothing smell of coffee, the unmistakable Viennese décor of parquet flooring and sofas of faded fabric, and the smartly-clad waiters wearing wry expressions. Although the other houses possess a similar sense of sophistication, the Sperl is particularly special as it is the only one that has never been rebuilt or modernized. Austrian culture is conservative in many ways but this is one element of their dedication to tradition that can be forgiven.
Known as “Vienna’s foremost cafe on the Ringstrasse,” Café Schwarzenberg has stayed true to tradition throughout the years, preserving the old style Viennese with precision. As well as treating its guests to fine coffee and cake, there is a colorful cultural calendar of music events, readings, and private viewings.
Exquisite Viennese coffee and cakes have been served here since the 1800s, its past regulars including Gustav Mahler and the critic Karl Kraus. Today this elegant, listed coffeehouse has a reputation for serving one of the city’s best and most authentic Wiener Schnitzels.