17 Reasons Why Wine Lovers Will Love Vienna

Famed for its composers and pastries, the Austrian capital is one of the top destinations for wine…


In Vienna, you can take a streetcar to wine country. With slightly more effort, you can venture farther afield into the hillsides above the Danube and wander among 1,700 acres of vineyards, where you might pause at a Buschenschank—one of the rustic outdoor wine taverns that pop up when the weather is nice—for a bottle of Gemischter Satz with views of the baroque skyline below. Yes, the Austrian capital famed for composers and pastries is first a wine city, where the bounty of the vines is as deeply rooted in the local culture as it is in Burgundy and Bordeaux. “Vineyards have been here for more than 2,000 years,” says winemaker Rainer Christ, noting that they were planted first by the Celts and then by the Romans. Today there are more than 100 wineries within the city limits, as well as a booming wine-bar scene and some astonishing international wine lists, including the 60,000-bottle cellar at the Palais Coburg hotel. Most Viennese wines are not exported, so to truly experience them requires a trip to the city. And now is the time: The 2015 vintage has arrived, and it is being called one of the greatest in memory.