Shake it Baby!
In a number of cocktail bars in the city, patrons will find all kinds of homemade essences bubbling away in the background. Dubbed “cuisine style”, the latest trend to sweep the capital’s bar scene has triggered a proliferation of homemade lemonades, infusions, syrups and liqueurs. DIY is back, and bartenders are doubling up as cooks – a development that is very much in evidence at Barrikade in the Marktwirtschaft hall. The jars of preserved fruits, roots and liqueurs lining the countertops are not just for show. Barrikade even makes its own tonic water. The beetroot and horseradish cocktails are particularly unusual.
Herb garden in a cocktail glass.
Giant pickling jars take pride of place on the shelves at Heuer am Karlsplatz. This bar specializes in vinegar-based fruit syrups known as shrubs. Its homemade preserves, syrups and essences are also used in the restaurant’s kitchens, while the herbs are picked fresh from the neighboring Karls Garten. At Botanical Garden the name says it all: the herbs and spices for the homemade infusions and juices are harvested from herb planters suspended directly above the cocktail bar.
Homage to Vienna
Bar staff tending a hot stove are only one aspect of Vienna’s new approach to mixology. Many bars are using local spirits to give their cocktails a special twist. By changing its recipe on multiple occasions over the years, Viennese vermouth producer Burschik (est. 1891) never grows old. As a result, Burschik’s Vermouth has recently found its way back onto the capital’s drinks menus in recent years – either unadulterated or as a mixer. Stockists include the Kussmaul restaurant, which also has a fantastic cocktail bar.
Heuer am Karlsplatz and Kleinod also use local Burschik vermouth, as well as Wien Gin. Made by the three Kesselbrüder friends, the latter can be sampled at Erich’s stylish, gold-paneled bar or the Salonplafond im MAK restaurant. With its Art Nouveau-inspired label this fantastic gin is also a popular souvenir.
It’s not just products from Vienna that find their way into the capital’s cocktail glasses – the rest of the country has a part to play too. Fruit brandies and sweet dessert wines are also suitable for cocktails, both of which are Tür 7’s forte. Famous for preparing its own ingredients, this bar has a private living room atmosphere and prospective patrons should remember to make a reservation by phone. In a throwback to the days of prohibition, visitors have to ring the bell, speakeasy-style, before they can enter the premises.
A new generation of bartenders is revisiting the canon of classic cocktails. The recipes, some of which date back more than 100 years, are celebrating a comeback. Popular haunt Miranda Bar is among the places to pick up on this trend, serving long-forgotten cocktails – including numerous fizz mixes – in an inviting and contemporary atmosphere. Kleinod is another devotee of all things vintage, a theme that runs through its art deco interiors as well as its cocktails. It almost goes without saying that both of these bars make a lot of their ingredients themselves.
Various bars have struck the perfect mix, proving that excellent food and excellent drinks are a match made in heaven. Both aperitif aficionados, Roberto American Bar and the charming 1950s-style R&Bar, serve fantastic snacks with their cocktails.
Text: Susanne Kapeller
BarrikadeSiebensterngasse 21, 1070 Wien
- Th - Su, 17:00 - 00:00
Heuer Garten. Restaurant. Bar.Treitlstraße 2, 1040 Wien
Botanical GardenKolingasse 1 , 1090 Wien
- Tu - Sa, 17:00 - 03:00
KussmaulBäckerstraße 5, 1010 Wien
- Tu - Sa, 16:00 - 02:00
ErichNeustiftgasse 27, 1070 Wien
- daily, 09:00 - 02:00
Salonplafond at MAKStubenring 5, 1010 Wien
- Mo, 18:00 - 00:00
- Tu - Su, 10:00 - 00:00
KleinodSingerstraße 7, 1010 Wien
- Mo - Sa, 15:30 - 04:00
- Su, 17:00 - 02:00
Tür 7 | BarBuchfeldgasse 7, 1080 Wien
- Mo - Sa, 19:00 - 04:00
- Reservation required!
Miranda BarEsterházygasse 12, 1060 Wien
- Mo - Th, 18:00 - 02:00
- Fr - Sa, 18:00 - 03:00
R&Bar RundbarLindengasse 1, 1070 Wien
- Tu - Sa, 17:00 - 02:00