The Viennese microbrewery (German: Wiener Brauhaus, Wiener Kleinbrauerei) is a typical institution of Vienna. These microbreweries serve their own beer to the public. They also serve food, in many cases traditional Austrian dishes.
In many cases the brewing equipment is in the centre of the place and the tables for the customers are arranged around the equipment. Some microbreweries open in the late morning and offer both lunch and dinner, others open in the late afternoon.
The average Austrian drinks more that 100 litres (176 Imperial pints) of beer per year, which makes them second only to the Czechs for thirstiness. Beer in bars is usually served in 500 ml (0.9 pints) and 300 ml (0.5 pints) glasses. Full-bodied lagers from regional breweries are the most popular beers.
The most popular type of beer in Austria is lager or Märzen beer. It is malty with a relatively low proportion of hops and has a golden yellow colour. The alcohol content of the bottom-fermented beer is between 5 and 5.5 percent. Over 60% of the beer sold in Austria is Märzen.
Well-known Viennese microbreweries
The order is by district.
- 1 1516 The Brewing Company, 1. district, Schwarzenbergstraße 2, ☏ . daily 11:00- 02:00. This is an American-style brew pub with music from Rolling Stones to Michael Jackson. American and Austrian cuisine with a home smoker for baby back ribs, typical dishes such as schnitzels and salads, also seasonal favourites.
- 2 Salm Bräu, 3. district, Rennweg 8 (Tram line 71, station "Unteres Belvedere"). daily 11:00-24:00. Winner of several international prizes, also brew a beer liquor. Reserve online.
- 3 Wieden Bräu, 4. district, Waaggasse 5, ☏ . daily 11:30-24:00. Besides 4 home-made beers, they serve specialty beers such as whiskey beer. Occasionally they organize beer seminars.
- 4 Sieben Stern Bräu, 7. district, Siebensterngasse 19, ☏ . Daily 11:00 - 23:00. They serve hemp, smoked and spicy chili beer amongst others.
- 5 The Highlander, 9. district, Sobieskiplatz 4. Su-Th 16:00-24:00, F Sa 16:00-01:00. It has a large garden under an old plane tree, and offers traditional, organic cuisine and a wide range of vegetarian dishes. 3 in-house beers are on tap: Märzen, Lager and Stout. The copper kettles of the brewery can be seen behind the counter area.
- 6 Beaver Brewing Company, 9. district, Liechtensteinstraße 69. M-Th 16:00-24:00, F Sa 12:00-01:00, Su 12:00-22:00. An American-style microbrewery opened by David Beaver who is from Michigan. They feature 7 rotating house beers and 2 guest beers. It also serves classic American food. There is a second location in 5. District at Schönbrunnerstraße 98 with the same hours, but is closed M Tu.
- 7 Medl Bräu, 14. district, Linzer Strasse 275, ☏ . Tu-Sa 09:00-23:00, Su closed. They serve 5 home-brewed beers: Maerzen, Blond, Dark, Mixed (half blond, half dark), and in season a Bock.
- 8 Schwarzer Rabe, 16. district, Ottakringerstraße 180, ☏ . Traditional pub culture with hearty Austrian and international cuisine since 1905.
- 9 Fischer Bräu, 19. district, Billrothstrasse 17, ☏ .
The Vienna beer festival is an outdoor festival on the Am Hof square in the city centre held over 4 days in early June.
It includes the big corporate breweries like Gösser, and major private breweries like Ottakringer, but also smaller craft brewers from Vienna and the provinces, so you can sample the beer of the whole country without leaving Vienna. There is food and music, of course.
It is usually open from 11:00-22:00, and there is no entrance fee, but you have to buy your beer, of course, and pay a deposit on glasses.
You can get to the Am Hof is on the U3 line to Herrengasse and walk across, or from Schottentor (U2) or Stephansplatz (U3 and U1).
The 1A and 3A buses go to Schwertgasse (or take the 1A or 2A to Herrengasse).
Craft Bier Fest
The Craft Bier Fest is held in Vienna on the last weekend in November. The fest runs from 16:00 to 23:00 on each of two days, and focuses on Austrian and Central/Eastern European beers, with a selection of international guest beers. You buy your tickets on the door or in advance online. The ticket price includes a free beer tasting glass, and you buy tokens to exchange for samples.
It is held in the Marx Halle at Karl-Farkas-Gasse 19 in the third district. By U-Bahn, take the U3 line to Erdberg or Schlachthausgass. Or take the 18 tram or 74A bus to Viehmarktgasse (the tram also passes Schlachthausgasse if you want to combine subway and tram). Or take the 71 tram to St. Marx or the 80A bus to Neu Marx or Maria-Jacobi-Gasse