Just like its closest neighbour Italy, Austria has its own traditional coffee culture, meeting its highpoint in Vienna and the creamy Wiener Melange.
Austrians are very proud of their coffee, which means that going into a café and just ordering a “Kaffee” is not enough. You need to specify which one: do you want a “Verlängerter”? Brown or white? Cappuccino? A Caffé Latte? Or maybe an Espresso? How many shots? (here‘s a cute infographic about it).
Being Vienna’s “little sister”, Graz has taken its role seriously. There is no Starbucks to be seen in Graz, “only” a wide range of traditional Austrian cafés, coffee shops with their own locally roasted coffee beans or independent cafés. Here are the best ones you should try:
Café Sacher is an institution of Vienna but does not fail to have a location in Graz too. Here have a slice of the famous Sacher Torte paired with a Wiener Melange (coffee with frothed milk). You can find it on the main shopping street in Graz, Herrengasse. The inside is decorated like a traditional Austrian café but, since March 2018, without the smell of cigarette smoke.
This café has a long history, it has been standing close to the Opera House since 1861, but it has recently undergone renovation and has a much more modern feel compared to other traditional cafés in Graz. If the selection of cakes is not enough to lure you in, Opern Café also offers a wide variety of dishes for lunch and dinner, as well as breakfast until 3p.m.
Café König is really small and quaint, but is also an institution in Graz tracing its history all the way back to 1918. Albeit its small size, the café is divided in smoker’s and non-smoker’s areas, and it draws you in with its traditional mohogany interior, taking you back in time to when it was first built just off the main square in the centre.
On the other side of the river you can find the Kaffee Weitzer. Peep into the cake display in the window and you will surely want to stop and have a slice of delicious dessert. The café is connected to the hotel Weitzer, here you can have also breakfast/brunch until 11:30 at the buffet of the hotel.
This is an institution of coffee in Graz, though renovated in 2016, still maintains its traditional coffee house feel. I guess being the oldest café in Graz, it probably is quite hard to shake tradition off, not that Café Fotter wants to anyway.
Tribeka is an abbreviation for “Trink Besseren Kaffee”, which translates to “drink better coffee”, and I do have to admit, that you won’t find better coffee anywhere else in Graz than here. Loved by locals, Tribeka is very successful and has open 4 locations in Graz until now. My favourite one has to be the one in Kaiserfeldgasse, near the main shopping street, but all cafés are stilishly decorated and inviting. Tribeka’s coffee beans are all roasted locally and you can also buy them directly, if you want to have the taste of Tribeka coffee in your own home.
Ever since its opening, BUNA has really made itself a name in Graz for the best coffee in the city. It regularly offers coffee-related workshops and you can also buy the coffee beans in packets, all roasted locally.
Born from the Ginko vegetarian Restaurant, Greenhouse has quickly become a favourite amongst vegans and vegetarians in Graz looking for their caffeine fix. The drinks and cakes on offer are 100% cruelty-free and delicious.
Ducks Coffee is loved by locals because of its relaxing atmosphere and duck-inspired decorations. The coffee is good and so is their breakfast offering! You can also buy cups with cute ducks on them.
Do you have any favourite coffee shops in Graz that I haven’t mentioned? Let me know in the comments and I will check them out asap!
Check out other ideas on what to do in Graz on previous blog posts here.