4 of the Best Heurigers in Vienna

Vienna is a city of wine: the only metropolis in the world with massive vineyards. You can try these wines at the Heurigers – unpretentious wine taverns near the vineyards and also serving food. Below, you'll find a few of my favorites, some closer to the city, others high up on the hillside. The local specialty is the Gemischter Satz, a white blend made from different grapes that were grown and harvested together.

If the well-known Heurigers of Vienna’s District 19 in Grinzing and Nussdorf feel overly touristy, I suggest you head to Mauer on the other side of town. Here hides the charming Heuriger of Michael Edlmoser, a leading Viennese winemaker.

Edlmoser himself is among the servers who slalom through the crowd with tender pork belly slices, Liptauer and creamy egg spreads, or apple and cottage cheese strudels in hand. And of course wines. Start with his classic Wiener Gemischter Satz, then move on to the Rieslings, among the best in Austria. Be sure to check the opening hours – asg’steckt – as they’re open for two-week intervals at a time.

Heuriger Muth is the name if you'd like to experience a typical Heuriger in the center of Heurigerville, that is, the Grinzing neighborhood of Vienna's District 19. Enter through the barrel-vaulted courtyard, select some cold cuts and spreads – spicy Liptauer! – from the display case, then settle down under the soaring chestnut tree with a glass or two of easy-drinking Gemischter Satz, the local Viennese wine. Proprietor Michael Landrichter, also busy serving guests, gathered an especially kind group of servers. More good news: excellent warm dishes too and not overrun by tourists.

Wieninger am Nussberg is one of the growing number of Heurigers in Vienna that are located high up on the hillside. The panoramic views and a carefree environment right amid the vineyards draw young and chic – and sometimes rowdy – locals, who otherwise turn up their noses at the old-school Heurigers down in the city.

The wines come from Fritz Wieninger, the father of Viennese winemaking, who makes both excellent whites – Gemischter Satz, too, of course – and easy-drinking reds. The food comprises tasty Viennese classics. The best way to get here from the city center is taking tram #37 to the last stop (Hohe Warte), then walking the remainder of the way, about 30 minutes, the last section right through the vineyards. Open Thursday to Sunday in the outdoor season.

Heurigers are a Vienna specialty: charming wine taverns in the suburbs, near the city’s famed vineyards. But what if you don't have the time or energy to trek out to Grinzing and Nussberg in Heuriger-land? You find the best alternative in the city, which is Weinstube Josefstadt. It's a small drinking joint in the elegant District 8, with residential houses towering over its ivy-covered outdoor garden.

While technically not a Heuriger – they don't make their own wines – the place looks and feels like one. Meatballs, roast pork belly, egg and liptauer spreads, spinach, apple, and cottage-cheese strudels are stocked in the glass display. The wines: Gemischter Satz (Vienna's white), Blaufränkisch, and Zweigelt. Note that Weinstube Josefstadt shuts down for the winter, from November until February.