Cafe Central, Vienna

4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5 Stars - 14 Reviews

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  • Cafe Central
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  • Ekaterinburg's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Sampling Cafe Society

    by Ekaterinburg Written Dec 31, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    At Cafe Central gazing in awe at my Dobostorte

    Cafe Central is an institution in Vienna with a long tradition and famous regulars like Trotsky. This was where I had my first VT meeting with Vienna members Alusru and Globetrot and I think the stimulating discussion we had there was well in keeping with Cafe Central tradition. This was also my first introduction to Austrian cakes so all in all it was a completely pleasurable experience. At around 3.30 a distinguished looking man in dress suit opened the Grand piano and began to play. I was happy beforehand but this was definitely the icing on my dobostorte. The whole atmosphere of gentility and bonhomie in Cafe Central was everything I had expected and more.The impeccably dressed waiters were busy but friendly and at no time made any effort to hurry you up. You can have lunch and snacks here as well as coffee and I had the first soup I actually liked in Vienna. A potato soup with chunks of bacon and not a dumpling in sight.

    Favorite Dish: My favourite dish here is without doubt the exquisite gastronomical experience also known as the Dobostorte. About five thin layers of biscuit sponge and caramel/chocolate frosting with a carmelised toffee-type glaze on top. Further words fail me - come to Vienna and try it for yourself !

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  • Jmill42's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: The Most Famous Viennese Cafe

    by Jmill42 Written Mar 17, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Me, Kate, and Annie in Cafe Central

    Cafe Central is the best cafe in Vienna. The only problem is that everyone knows it and it is therefore touristy. In spite of that, it is still tops on my list because of its coffee, its ambience, and the fact that every afternoon they have a live piano player serenading you with classical music.

    Favorite Dish: Try the Irish Coffe...

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  • Cafe Central: Where Kafka admired Sissi's picture...

    by sabsi Written Sep 10, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Mozart Cake, Cafe Central, Vienna
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    Cafe Central is an institution in Vienna. It's been there since 1860, at changing locations though. It used to be a meeting point for the literary scene of Vienna, the list of famous people who drank their coffee here include names like Kafka, Stalin, Trotzki, Kokoschka and Hitler. After world war II Cafe Central was gone. It came back only in 1975 at its current location in Palais Ferstel. It's popular with tourists and locals ever since.

    Favorite Dish: I really enjoyed the paintings of Sissi and Franzl at the wall, the grumpy charme of the waiters, the typical atmosphere and the cakes here. I had Marillen-Palatschinken (apricot pancakes). They were nice but a bit sweet maybe (OK OK now, what did I expect? ;)

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  • BillNJ's Profile Photo

    Café Central: Enjoy a Kaffee Mit Schlag

    by BillNJ Updated Apr 4, 2011

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    After my friend Astrid and I ate at Figlmüller, we headed over to the famous Café Central which, as its name suggests, is centrally located in the 1st district. The exterior of the building is beautiful -- and the interior is equally impressive with its vaulted ceilings. While we were there, there was a piano player -- which added an air of class.

    Near the front door, there is a life-like mannequin of Peter Altenberg -- a writer who was a regular patron at the cafe in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. After Astrid and I enjoyed our coffees, Astrid (the local) took photos of me (the tourist) near the mannequin. As we were leaving, a few other people copied us and did the same.

    When in Vienna, remember the phrase "mit schlag". If you include this phrase when ordering your coffee, they will include delicious whipped cream.

    With this tip, I have included the link to the Wikipedia entry for Café Central which lists some of the famous people who have enjoyed a coffee here over the years.

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  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Cafe Central inside "Palais Ferstl"

    by globetrott Updated Aug 11, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Cafe Central
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    You will find this Cafe & restaurant in the Palais Ferstl - and it is a typical Kaffeehaus with a very long tradition :
    All sorts of Coffee and some cakes, and the coffee is of course served with a small glass of fresh water and they also serve small dishes for lunch and dinner - but on the small tables of a Kaffeehaus eating lunch or dinner is not always a pleasure, so its best to go there for a coffee.
    The very best about Cafe Central is the "Ambiente" in the great architecture of Palais Ferstl.
    In my last picture: a sculpture of the austrian poet Peter Altenberg (1859–1919), he was also called a Kaffeehaus-poet, because he spent all day long in the cafe writing poems and love-letters for other people there against some coffe or spirits !

    Favorite Dish: I normally take a "Grosser Brauner" - a strong coffee with a bit of milk.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Arts and Culture

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  • TracyBates's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Don't Miss this Cafe!

    by TracyBates Written Sep 21, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This cafe was wonderful. We happened upon it by accident, but we were glad we did! The place is beyond gorgeous, with large cathedral-like cealings and comfortable chairs and couches. The atmosphere was perfect.

    The coffee and pastries were excellent.

    Favorite Dish: The applestruedel was wonderful. Everything you heard about Viennese pastries is true...we couldn't get enough!

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  • antistar's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Cafe Central

    by antistar Updated May 26, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Cafe Central, Vienna

    If you are only going to visit one of Vienna's famous coffee houses, make it this one. It's a glorious cafe, with a grand interior of high ceilings and long and illustrious history. Looking around at its exorbitant fittings, you'd be hard pressed to believe that this was one of the favourite hang outs of the father of the world's greatest Communist state, Vladimir Lenin himself.

    The food is excellent, the ambiance perfect, and the prices are not unaffordable, although on the expensive side even for Vienna. The place gets very busy around lunchtime, so get their early or call to book a seat. I ended up sharing my table with some young travellers who were hovering about waiting for a table to clear, and I felt guilty hogging one all to myself.

    Even if you haven't got a lot of cash, you can at least afford a coffee, and maybe one of their excellent pancakes.

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    Cafe Central: Cafe Central

    by mvtouring Written Apr 4, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    Cafý Central is one of the most famous coffee houses in the city and probably one of the most costly too. Before ww2 it was frequented by writers, journalists and artist alike. The coffee was not the best I had, but the ambiance made up for it. Just to sit there and feel part of the great minds that frequented the place before me was just mind blowing.

    Favorite Dish: I just had coffee here which was very nice. I like the way the Austrians drink their coffee with cream instead of milk

    Related to:
    • Food and Dining

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  • klj&a's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Quintessential Viennese Coffee House

    by klj&a Updated Mar 24, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Cafe Central

    Our local friend advised us to go here even though it’s always full of tourists. He said that this is the quintessential Viennese coffee house experience. There are huge marble columns and huge decorated ceilings. The desserts are to die for.

    Favorite Dish: Coffee and desserts

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  • mariahc1's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Don't leave Vienna without visiting Cafe Central!

    by mariahc1 Updated Mar 26, 2011

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    Once you step inside this cafe, you can sense the phantoms of all the writers and intellectuals of the past who used to meet there. The decoration is like nothing you have ever seen, especially the high ceiling. Every detail is important there. The service was impeccable and so was the ambience. There was a pianist playing song pieces on the piano which added to the splendour and magic of the moment. Really, our experience in Cafe Central will always be memorable to us.
    Moreover, the coffee was excellent, served with a cookie and some water. The waitors were polite as well as helpful since we could not speak any German.
    This cafe should not just be added to the list of coffeehouses of Vienna but it should also be considered one of the city's most important historical places. Adolf Loos (the famous Viennese architect), Sigmund Freud, Adolf Hitler, Leon Trosky and so on..are just a few names of important people who used to visit Cafe Central.
    If we are ever in Vienna again, we will definitely go back to this place.

    Favorite Dish: We have tasted Sacher Torte and apple strudel which were fantastic! There will be no sign of guilt after you have your dessert there!

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  • metallemon's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Old and Beautiful

    by metallemon Written May 3, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This cafe - restaurant is one of the first cafes in Vienna and it's very close to Hofburg palace. On the wall there are portraits of Emperor Franz-Joseph and Princess Sisi! The whole place is very imperial!

    The food is delicious and also the desserts. We ate traditional schnitzel with fried vegetales and potatos salad. It also offers a great variety of beers and wines. It's an expensive place, though and you have to know that if you want to eat there you will pay about 20euros per person.

    However, it's a must go place even if you don't want to go there for lunch you could go and try the coffees and the dessrts! It worths!

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  • Jp799's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Cafe Central

    by Jp799 Written Mar 27, 2009

    2 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Cafe Central

    Cafe Central is one of the most famous coffeehouses in Vienna. It was originally opened in 1876 and during its heyday was a meeting point for writers, politicians, and intellectuals. Viktor Adler, Theodor Herzl, Leon Trotsky, Josef Stalin are just some of the names that used this cafe at the start of the century. Adolf Hitler used to come into the cafe and try to sell his paintings before he was rejected by the art school. Peter Altenberg made it his favourite coffeehouse and his statue sits by the doorway. Cafe Central was closed in 1943 and didn't open again until 1982, although the restoration of the building wasn't completed until 1986.

    Although the interior is beautiful and the coffeehouse is full of history, I didn't particularly fancy Cafe Central. It has become more of a tourist attraction than a real coffehouse and the prices and atmosphere reflect this. If you really want a good coffeehouse to hang out in, go to the Hawelka or Westend.

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  • steventilly's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: Cafe Central

    by steventilly Written Aug 24, 2002

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Purportedly Vienna's most famous Coffee House. Built in 1860 it was, at the turn of the century, the major meeting place for Austria's intellectuals, the names of whome meant nothing to me. However one name I did know was Leon Trotsky, who was also a regular here before the first world war.

    Favorite Dish: Cake Cake Cake

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  • colin_bramso's Profile Photo

    Cafe Central: A famous 'must visit' cafe

    by colin_bramso Updated Oct 2, 2013
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    Opened over 150 years ago, Café Central was a meeting place for the city's intellectuals, and Lenin & Trotsky are said to have been regular customers.

    In a historic old and beautiful building, with a high vaulted ceiling, waiters in traditional uniform, a pianist playing classical music. Sitting here is like travelling back in time.

    Favorite Dish: Stick with the coffee and cakes, which are top quality, or linger over an Aperol Spritzer. Sadly, the main courses are overpriced and less than average quality. On our first night in Vienna we decided to do the most traditional thing we could think of so we went to Café Central and ordered the two most famous Viennese dishes, Wiener Schnitzel and Tafelspitz. Sadly, we were very disappointed.

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