Austrian cuisine is notoriously meat-heavy and famous for its Wurst and Schnitzel, but Innsbruck has plenty of cafés and restaurants catering for plant-based diets. Here are some of the best.
Restaurant, Contemporary, Vegan, Vegetarian, Gluten-free
Modern and elegant, with a polished interior, Olive is Innsbruck’s most popular gourmet vegetarian restaurant. The chefs are inventive with their dishes, using unconventional ingredients to produce exciting meat-free cuisine, with many vegan-friendly options to choose from, such as the burger with homemade cashew cheese or the pumpkin pie and some relatively “guilt-free” desserts to end on.
Restaurant, Contemporary, Vegan, Vegetarian, $$$
Chez Nico offers fine dining with an entirely cruelty-free menu. The owner, Nicolas Curtil, was inspired to open his restaurant after vegetarian cooking experiences he had in Paris and London. For lunch, there is the inexpensive option of two courses for 14.50 euros and a “dessert of the week” for just 4.50 euros. The evening courses are a creative medley of small dishes, from watermelon and parmesan carpaccio and tomato consommé to a cherry and chocolate dessert.
My Indigo serves guilt-free street food, designed for those who want “to eat conscientiously.” Taking inspiration from around the globe, the kitchen prepares a colorful spread of sushi, salads, curries, ramen soups, couscous, homemade lemonade, organic coffee, and brownies. Open minded and accommodating, they offer various ways to personalize your meal, with lactose-free, gluten-free, low-carb, and vegan options.
Restaurant, Fusion, Vegetarian, Vegan
An intimate little place and perhaps the smallest restaurant in the city, with room for just eight people. Oscar kocht fuses Mexican (the food of the chef’s homeland) and Mediterranean cuisine for an unusual yet undoubtedly delicious meat-free meal. His ingredients are ethically sourced, with most of the vegetables coming from nearby farms and the dairy products from Tyrol or Vorarlberg. As they profess, “Oscar’s kitchen is fresh, heterogeneous, creative and open!”
This is a casual, intimate place to stop by for a healthy and nutritious breakfast or lunch. The wide selection of vegan cakes available is impressive, especially seeing as they don’t include refined sugar in their recipes. Every dish is made with passion and care, and the service is friendly and welcoming.
Himal Nepali Kitchen Restaurant
Restaurant, Asian, $$$
It’s rare to find restaurants in Austria serving Nepalese cuisine, but Himal
sets the bar with its excellent cuisine. Popular with locals and tourists alike, you’ll find Himal near the university—it’s location making it a hotspot for student diners. The restaurant itself has both inside and outside seating, as well as a lounge area, where you can sit on cushions around low tables for an intimate evening. Although the menu isn’t exclusively vegetarian or vegan, you’ll find numerous meat-free options on the menu.