Enjoy Kaffee & Sachertorte in Hotel Sacher Wien, Café Central, and Demel
Tradition-rich cafés such as Hotel Sacher Wien, Café Central, and Demel are top attractions in Vienna. These coffee shops serve strong, fresh coffee with top Austrian cakes, including the ever popular chocolate Sachertorte.
Vienna is proud of its long coffee house tradition. Enjoying strong coffee in one of Vienna’s elegant cafés is a time-honored tradition. Amongst the best-known Wiener cafés are Café Sacher, Demel, and Café Central, which are top tourist sightseeing destinations in their own right.
- No Viennese cake is more famous than Sachertorte – a rich chocolate cake with a divine chocolate coating and a thin apricot jelly strip.
Sachertorte was first baked in 1832 by Hotel Sacher for the Imperial family. However, after a family member sold the original recipe to Sacher’s competitor Demel, Demel has also been using the original recipe to bake Sachertorte. A long court case was settled in Hotel Sacher’s favor allowing only Sacher to add “Das Original” (The Original) to each Sachertorte served. However, unlike Hotel Sacher, Demel correctly keeps the apricot strip at its original position below the chocolate cover and not in the middle of the cake, as is more commonly done nowadays.
- Closer inspection of the ingredients labels reveal that Demel uses more eggs than does Sacher to produce Sachertorte.
Coffee in the Hotel Sacher Wien – Home of the Sachertorte
The Hotel Sacher Wien may not necessarily be the best hotel in Vienna but it is close to the top and probably the most famous. The Hotel Sacher in Vienna has a long and illustrious history and is ideally located behind the Opara house.
Most visitors to Hotel Sacher Wien do not spend the night but rather sample the coffee and cake – more often than not Sachertorte mit Schlagobers (chocolate cake with whipped cream). Coffee and cake, as well as full meals, can be enjoyed in the sumptuous Café Sacher with terrace or in the more formal restaurant Anna Sacher.
Café Sacher Eck is smaller but less formal. It is on the corner of Kärtner and Philharmoniker Straße right across from the famed Staatsoper (and a local Starbucks shop). While Café Sacher is ideal for lingering in, Café Sacher Eck is a great choice for a quick stop before rushing off to see more top sights of Vienna.
- Sachertorte of various sizes can be bought at Hotel Sacher’s Confiserie, entrance next to Café Sacher Eck in Kärtner Straße, and shipped worldwide.
Coffee near the Hofburg in K.u.K Hofzuckerbäcker Ch. Demel’s Söhne
Café Demel is spread over several rooms and levels in a historic building in the Kohlmarkt in Central Vienna. The outdoor seating is very popular too and allows clear views of the Hofburg imperial palace. The long court battle over the rights to the name Sachertorte seemed to have done no damage to Demel – the publicity made Demel famous in Vienna and beyond. The Sachertorte here is worth sampling – and essential for an informed opinion on whether Sachertorte is better made by Demel or Sacher. However, Demel was originally foremost a confectionary and has excellent other cakes and pastries too.
Demel’s best-known invention is Kaiserschmarrn. Kaiserschmarrn was originally invented by Demel as the dessert for the wedding of Emperor Franz Joseph and Elizabeth (Sisi), duchess in Bavaria. (She apparently did not enjoy it as it would do damage to her figure.) Kaiserschmarnn is commonly served to children in the German-speaking world but note that Demel in Vienna uses the original alcohol-soaked raisins in its recipe.
Coffee in Café Central in Vienna, Austria
Café Central in Palais Festel is a Viennese institution. Although near the Hofburg, it is not in main thoroughfares and therefore seems to get less crowded than Demel and Sacher. Café Central has traditionally been the Kaffeehaus of choice of the intelligentsia and writers – Leo Trotsky, who started Pravda in Vienna, was a regular.
Café Central’s neo-Gothic interior was recently restored and although some bemoaned that too much patina was scrubbed off, it is as pleasant a locale as it has ever been. Like many a Vienna café, Café Central stocks a large range of local and international newspapers that patrons may peruse at leisure.
Life piano music is played from 4 to 7 pm and more lively music enlivens this coffee house from 7:30 pm.