Photo Courtesy of Gerd Kressi
In Austria, wine taverns are a cultural icon, where people come to eat, drink and listen to live music. Called heurigers or buschenschanks, these establishments have been around since the late 1700s when growers were granted the right to sell their own wine and homemade food. Wine taverns still have a presence in Austria’s viticultural zones—in fact, Vienna’s tavern customs were inscribed in the UNESCO index of intangible cultural heritage in 2019. Traditionally, only wines made in the current vintage by the winemaker that owned the tavern were served, and a bundle of pine twigs at the entrance would tell guests when a spot was open.
Vienna (Wien) is the world’s only capital that fosters significant viticulture within the city limits, and here taverns welcome any visitor looking for comfortable hospitality with a taste of local wine and cuisine. Nussberg, where several seasonal pop-up-style taverns are located, is one of the most picturesque spots in Vienna, a top vineyard overlooking the city. Opening times are often seasonal, so check ahead for travel convenience. Ausg’steckt means it’s open! While some taverns are less authentic than others, here are five unique spots that serve quality wine with traditional appeal.