One of the top reasons we travel is to eat! Yes, you heard that right! Food is an expression of the culture of the place. When you eat a dish at its place of origin in its original form, it is usually delicious and worth travelling all the way there! While Austria may not be a foodie’s destination, there are some really good gems there if you find the right places. Here are some of the best dishes we had during our trip.
Apple strudel (Apfelstrudel)
We had never heard of this dish before we visited Austria. After a long walk through Salzburg town, we walked into a bakery that looked very inviting. And we picked the item that looked the most delicious – the apple strudel.
The first bite (as is usually the case with new dishes) was tentative – it had a crispy outside, the inside was warm and mushy with the sweetness of apple and spice of cinnamon. Within moments it melted in the mouth! We’ve had many trips and countless dishes after that but that apple strudel is still one of the highlights! A must-eat if you are visiting Salzburg. And we recommend trying it at a local family-run place instead of the big bakery chains.
One of the most famous dishes in Austria and counted among the “national dishes”, the schnitzel is actually quite a simple meal. It is basically a thin slice of meat (usually chicken or veal) that is pounded, breaded and fried. It is usually served with a side of salad with a vinaigrette dressing, potatoes and a slice of lemon.
Luckily the ones we had were good, but there is always a risk of the meat being too dry. So, look for a good place and head there for an authentic experience.
Pizza in Austria? If your trip doesn’t include Italy and you happen to be near the Italian border (Innsbruck, Tirol and even up to Salzburg), then you can find plenty of authentic Italian pizza places. On our first night at Salzburg, we found a small restaurant in the neighbourhood where we stayed and were mind-blown.
Cafes in Vienna
Vienna has a strong cafe culture and you can find plenty of them while walking around the city. We specifically wanted to visit Cafe Sperl as we had read about it during our pre-trip research. It was beautiful inside with warm lighting and we managed to get the cozy seats near the window. Sitting there in that cafe from 1880, we felt like we were transported back in time. We ordered Wiener schnitzel, Viennese cold coffee, a “tall brauner” (double mocha) and a cheesecake while we soaked in the atmosphere.
Check out our complete itinerary for Austria here. If you enjoy reading our blog, do leave your thoughts in the comments section below. Your comments keep us going!