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Ottakringer Ottakringer Gold Fassl (***) is my favorite Viennese beer (apart from the Nussdorfers, which are only available at the brewery). It's soft, malty and well-balanced, and very good vom Faß. Ottakringer also produces a non-alcoholic beer, Null Komma Josef, notable for it's hilarious name which means, literally, "Zero Point Joe"; this is Viennese slang for "next to nothing". I'll leave it unrated except to say that Clausthaler is better.
Reininghaus Reininghaus (**) is produced by the same brewery conglomerate (Steirerbrau) as Gösser and is very similar.
Puntigamer Puntigamer (**) is also produced by Steirerbrau and shows a family resemblance. They also produce a Märzen.
Schladminger Schladminger Bier (**) is brewed in Schladming, at the base of the south wall of the Dachstein massif. The Schladminger glacier, at the top of the Dachstein, is a fine place to enjoy a Schladminger.
Stiegl Stiegl beer (**) has been brewed since 1492.
Edelweiß Weizen One of the few Austrian weiß beers (**+).
I feel obliged to mention that many of my Austrian correspondants have castigated me for giving Schwechater too high a rating. In fact many have pointed out to me that, as any Viennese knows, Schwechater's unofficial slogan is "Schlecht, schlechter, Schwechater" (or alternately, "Schwach, schwächer, Schwechater"); cf. Gösser. I will be sure to re-evaluate it when next in Vienna.
Kaiser Bier Kaiser (**) is brewed by Wieselburger and is a typical Austrian; there is also a dark Doppelmalz (**). Wieselburger Bier (**+) is better; I only had it once, from the bottle and would like to try it again. See also Kartausen-Bräu.
My Hirter rating seems to be one of my least popular; many Austrians have informed me that it deserves a much higher rating (indeed, most of my relatives seem to think better of it than I did). I'm eager to try it vom Faß.
Be sure to check out the official Hirter web page.
Zipfer Zipfer Urtyp (***) is one of the hoppier Austrian beers.
Baumgartner I enjoyed a Baumgartner (**) in the Grabner Almhaus.
Kapsreiter Landbier Goldbraun Golden brown Kapsreiter Landbier (***+) is intensely aromatic; it comes in a bottle with a ceramic stopper. Brewed in Schärding. According to my sources, the brewery is now owned by Ottakringer of Vienna.
Bohemia Regent This well-balanced Czech beer (****), brewed in Trebon since 1379, is available from Julius Meinl stores. The brewery supposedly also brews a porter!
Beethovenhaus Bierteufl This bier beisl is in one of Beethoven's many ex-residences. It has over one hundred beers available, thirty-six of which are Austrian. The decor is dark and pleasant with heavy wood beams everywhere. They also serve food; avoid the rather ordinary "specials" in favor of the excellent hausmannskost (home-cooking), like the garlicky biersuppe and the delicious Speck-Eier nockerl. III Bezirk, Corner of Ungargasse and Beatrixgasse. Take the U3 subway to Landstraße station. Walk one block south on Invaliden Straße to Ungargasse; turn left and walk one block to Beatrixgasse (the O Straßenbahn goes right to the door from Landstraße station).
Karl Kolarik's Schweizerhaus im Wiener Prater The Schweizerhaus isn't really a place to drink beer per se: it's a place to go for one perfect meal with one perfect beer. The Schweizerhaus is in the Wurstel Prater (the midway of the Volks Prater); it's a large, noisy and crowded restaurant with an extensive menu. But it's justly famous for one meal: hintere Schweinsstelzen with Budweiser Budvar. The Schweinsstelzen is a huge hunk of fresh ham (about as big as your head), on the shank bone, rubbed with coarse salt and caraway and perfectly grilled. It's served with enough grated horseradish on the side to make your eyes water. And the traditional beverage is Budvar vom Faß. This is as Viennese an experience as you could hope for; not to be missed. (I'm told the Schweizerhaus closes for the winter.) Prater 116, Wien. (1) 728 0152.
Fischer Bräu The beer is strongly recommended by many correspondants. Also try the toasts. XIX Bezirk, Billrothstrasse 17, corner Schegargasse. (1) 319 62 64. Take the 38 Straßenbahn from Schottentor.
I can really recommend "Wieden Braeu", it is one of my favorite places (and this not only because it's only five minutes away from where I live). They have their own, small brewery (part of it INSIDE the room, so you can watch how your beer is brewed while drinking), they produce a refreshing beer called Helles, a spicier Märzen and a malty, dark brown "Dunkles". They don't seem to fill it in bottles for outside sale. It is also a good place for eating.IV Bezirk, Waaggasse 5. (1) 58 60 300.
Christian Unfried, Universität Wien
Siebensternbräu is relatively new (one or two years) and a real brewpub of which there are not so many in Vienna. Their pils is excellent and so is the food you get there. In fact, the pub is near the so-called 'Spittelberg' (within walking distance) which is a picturesque group of old houses with nice pubs.VII Bezirk, Siebensterngasse 19. (1) 523 86 97. Take the 49 Straßenbahn; Siebensternbräu is just a few stops from the Volkstheater subway station (U2 and U3).
Medl Bräu XIV Bezirk, Linzerstraße 275. (1) 94 43 40.
Plutzer Bräu VII Bezirk, Schrankgasse 2. (1) 52 61 215.
Salm Bräu III Bezirk, Rennweg 8. (1) 799 599 2. Open daily from 11am till midnight. The following information is from the proprietor, Ing. Albert Welledits, VP <email@example.com>
Bierklinik I Bezirk, near Stephansdom.
Stiegl has a beerhall/restaurant on the road up the Monchburg. It has several rooms of varying levels of formality from a fine restaurant to cafeteria style to just plain beer. Prices are reasonable for a tourist town. The nice thing about this place is the upper garden terraces that have very nice views looking out over the city and have chestnut trees growing up through the floor. I don't have an address but it is a well known local landmark.
Andrew E. Smith, University of Cincinnati
Another very nice place to have a beer is in the castle (Schloß) in Steyr. They have a very inexepensive, dark paneled restaurant with outside tables in the castle gardens. They serve a variety of beers, but primarily have Styrian beers like Gosser. Great food, great beer! What more could you want?
Andrew E. Smith, University of Cincinnati
Thanks also to my many correspondants, in Austria and elsewhere; I only have space to list those who contributed information or corrections that went directly in to this page: