If you need to give your feet or your wallet a break from Mariahilfer Straẞe, Vienna’s main shopping street, your savior is Café Ritter. It’s the last remaining coffeehouse on this very long stretch of commerce and far better than your number two option – a generic Starbucks.
Ritter delivers a true Viennese cafe experience, almost to the point of being a caricature of itself: stuccoed ceilings, hanging chandeliers, bow-tie-wearing waiters, dark-roasted coffee (the neon sign and the pastry counter are 1950s additions). But Ritter isn't mere nostalgia. The food is especially good here – Goulash! Topfenstrudel! – and the alert but never pushy servers are miles ahead of the competition. Cash only.