About

My name is Kristen, and I am a Southern Californian who has called Austria home since 2007 and Vienna home since 2008.

This blog, which I began writing in August of 2011 and began publishing in January of 2012, highlights the best of my dining adventures in and around Vienna.

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If you’re here to find an abundance of  schnitzel, sauerkraut, and dumplings, it might not work out between us.

My apologies.

While I do enjoy it from time to time, I eat copious amounts of the traditional fare from my Austrian mother in-law when visiting her in the countryside.  Here in the city, it’s not what typically gets me out and about each week in search of new places.  It’s Vienna’s other offerings–the variety and innovation–that have stolen my palate.

(And my purse.)

‘Innovation,’ and ‘variety’ are not words often associated with Vienna.  It’s a city known for changing ever so slightly and oh so slowly.  Yet if one seeks, one can find that there’s more here than traditional restaurants serving up meat and potatoes on cobblestone-laden roads with red trams whizzing by.

Vienna has amazing sushi. (In a land-locked country, no less.)  Tasty Thai food, gooey Neapolitan-style pizza, the perfect French bistro for a lazy Sunday, an authentic Turkish place by a market.

But most cities with an international population have these offerings, right?

Sure.  Yet I think Vienna is unique because of its emphasis on local and seasonal food sourcing.  (Wherever and whenever possible, anyway. See: sushi, landlocked country.)  What I find even more remarkable about this, is that restaurants do this without labeling themselves so, a reflection of the Austrian food philosophy on the whole.  Get it from your own backyard!  If you can’t find it there, then visit your neighbor!  There isn’t a local or seasonal ‘food movement’ here per se.

It is that way already.

And what’s more–something has been happening recently here in the local dining scene. Whether the food is coming into its own or becoming more like everywhere else remains to be seen.  All I know is that I’m happy to be along for the ride.  I’ve observed some pretty historic moments–the entry of the word ‘cupcake’ to local lingo, for example, finally replacing its misnomer–muffin. Salads, (formerly relegated only to sides, and very sorry sides, drowning in little bowls of vinegar) have been allowed to take center stage as entrée options.  The definition of ‘spicy’ is inching towards accurate.

And as international food offerings have become more authentic, traditional cuisine has begun to be reinterpreted, with new places cropping up, seemingly overnight, full of innovative flair and fun.  (There is a German saying for this phenomenon–Wie Pilze aus dem Boden schiessen [like mushrooms shoot from the ground].)

Somewhere along the way, it became an obsession a hobby of mine to hunt down new and new-to-me places. I am always looking forward to exploring a new corner of the city (and beyond), hoping to find something delicious at the destination.

I love sharing my findings. 

Perhaps you are interested?

If so, then willkommen to sushiandstrudel!

45 thoughts on “About

  1. Kristen – this is great!!! Fun to read and good research for my next Vienna visit! (Which I need to plan!) And YOU need to start making plans for Amsterdam visit :)

  2. Great blog Kristen! I’m always looking for a new dining options and I shall try some of your recommendations. Love your photography too :)

  3. Kristen, you are a very talented writer!!! I really enjoyed reading your blog!
    hope to visit some of the places with you, next time I´m in Vienna. ;)

  4. Hi there. I found your blog through virtualvienna.net and I think its great. its always hard to find new places to try. Thanks for the tips! (From a native of Las Vegas, also married to an Austrian)

  5. Dear All,
    thanks for the kind words! This project has been something I wanted to do for a long time. I hope you’ll stay along for the ride as my restaurant lists grows and my photography improves. Please share the link with anyone you think might be interested.

    LG,
    Kristen

  6. You write well, you choose well and I really love the photos. Do try, however, to break out of your Yuppie/Bobo mold–it’s beginning to get a bit samey. You were in the 16th and didn’t write about Kent or the burek places? Nothing about where to get the best cevapcici (Galaxie in the the 15th)? Hope you’ll start taking us to Vienna’s many other kinds of expat restaurants–Bulgarian, Romanian, Hungarian, Serbian, Bohemian (a place in the 8th boasts 32 kinds of kartofelpuffer). You are a very good guide–so lead on!

    • Dear William,
      Part of the fun of blogging is the dialogue between readers and writer, so thanks for your comment. Kent is actually high on my list of places to try in the near future. I’ve been wanting to go there since I returned from a trip to Turkey in April, so a visit is long overdue. My Turkish colleague, however, swears that the 16th district location’s food is not as good as at the other two! Sushi and Strudel is a relatively young project of mine, so I am sure that the restaurants I feature here will continue to diversify. Still, I also cannot help where I like to eat:) I’d love to hear more about this place with 32 kinds of kartofelpuffer. Sounds intriguing! I’m definitley open to suggestions.
      -Kristen

  7. LOVE the blog. Seriously, it’s greatness. I must try the 16th district markets! Naschmarkt is great, and Tewa features my fav. dish on Mondays so thats the only day I can go. As I can’t afford to visit too too often. I am looking forward to trying Kurt’s (although I must admit I am really holding out for March 16 when Tichy opens back up! I’m gonna go verrückt!) I am sure you’ve tried it but I didn’t see a post? Do you need a formal invite? Ich lade dich ein! Du musst Tichy probieren! I’ve been living in Vienna for a little less than a year. I’m from Texas, I see you’re from Cali. Maybe you can help: Where is good Mexican food ’round here? I have learned you MUST really lower your standards. But I am wondering if you’ve found a gem, well by Austrian Mexican food standards, a “gem”?

    • @Andra, thank you so much for your comment! I as well love Naschmarkt, though I tend to go there more often once the weather is nice. So look for some future posts there:)

      I love Tichy ice cream, but I have to say that I am more of a frozen yogurt girl. That is the So-Cal girl in me!

      Regarding Mexican…ugh that is a toughy. I have found 3 places, 2 in the 8th: Mas and Los Mexikas, and 1 in the 9th: Fresco Grill. All are good, but I have to admit that they aren’t like those a Texan or a Californian would know from home. I’ve also had a bunch of fails in this department:)

      Thanks for reading!

  8. Hi Kristen,

    Melissa here again. So if you need any suggestions add this to your list.
    Lubin in the 3rd district. A Croatian restaurant. Excellent fish, the most amazing soup (Parmesancremesuppe mit Prosciutto) and reasonable prices.

    http://www.lubin.at/

    Also I’ve been told that this Mexican restaurant is good (it’s on my list).
    Taco Lopez in the 2nd district. I love Margarita’s and will be happy to join anyone who loves them too!

    http://www.tacoslopez.at/index.html

    Guten Appetite
    Melissa

  9. You have a beautiful blog! I love the photos and am excited to try a few places you’ve reviewed.
    I’ve also blogged about some restaurants in Vienna – though they’re all in the cheap range of things seeing that I’m a student :) Maybe you’d like to add them to your list though!

    Der Wiener Deewan – http://nicollesorganizedchaos.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/on-a-student-budget-der-wiener-deewan/
    Vapiano – http://nicollesorganizedchaos.wordpress.com/2012/03/09/fast-and-fresh-vapianos/
    And Limes – http://nicollesorganizedchaos.wordpress.com/2012/03/10/atmosphere-and-quality-limes/

  10. Liebe Kristen,

    This is a wonderful blog. One feels the love…
    You are a very good writer and the photos make we want to take a bite out of these delicious dishes.
    I especially love the part about the grumpy waiters – so true!

    Looking forward to the next entry.

  11. Really enjoy reading your blog – vielen dank.

    I was in Vienna last year at the end of summer for about six weeks and also enjoyed finding new places to eat.
    Have you tried the point of sale? I love their breakfasts, available till quite late on Sundays too.
    http://www.thepointofsale.at/

    Another spot is Cupcakes Wien, I’ve heard their wares are exceptional.
    http://www.cupcakes-wien.at/

    I’m not exaclty sure when I will be back but am very excited about going to Edison when I do.

    Thanks again for your efforts, will look forward to future entries with interest :DD

  12. Great Blog!! Thanks a lot for the tips! It will be my second Easter in Vienna and I put already some of the recommended cafes on my list! Can’t wait to try them out!!

  13. Dear Kristen! I love so many of the restaurants you mention in your wonderful blog. Kurt and Sosaku are two of my absolut favourite spots! All the other suggestions sound tempting and as a Swiss I definitely have to try Chameleon.. I moved to Vienna 1.5 years ago and finding new restaurants is one of my favourite endeavours. But.. I still haven’t found an American style cupcake place (Magnolia style) or the perfect yoga studio.. and as you mention yoga in one of your posts I was wondering if you could share your top three studios maybe, and you probably also know where to find that tasty American cupcake, right? thanks!

    • Hi D! Thanks for the praise:) Okay, I’ve got you covered with the cupcakes…at least I think I do. Do you know the Cupcakes Wien shop in the 8th district? They are the closest thing I’ve found to Magnolia. She makes her cupcakes with topfen, actually, which I really like because the result is less of that “weighed down feeling” you (or I) get from an American Cupcake. There is also an adorable bakery in the 17th/18th district called 12 Munchies. I think she also does cupcakes! Yoga: I currently go to Yoga Kula in the 1st district. It’s a bit pricey and can get a bit crowded, but I love their flow classes and the hot yoga classes, plus the Friday night candlelight yoga is awesome. I am soon going to try out a new studio in the 19th called Yoga 19. Phew, long answer:) Hope it helps!

      • Thank you so much Kristen! I do know Cupcake Wien but unfortunately dont like their icing.. :( and will definitely try the Yoga studios you suggest!

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  16. Some helpful suggestions for our summer trip to the Vienna area in July…. keep us in the loop Kristen with new finds. (oh, and your blog is a hip, fun read)

  17. Hi,
    my name is Simona and I am with the web research team at InterNations.org. We are the world’s leading social network for expatriates, with currently 500.000+ members in more than 322 cities worldwide.
    I really enjoyed reading your fantastic blog and believe that expats in Vienna and around the world would not only – appreciate the entertaining content, but also benefit from the insights and perspectives you offer. Your blog really is a captivating read! This is why I would like to feature you and your writing in a designated section of InterNations.org , the Recommended Blog on Vienna. We have designed a link badge for placement on your blog and would be glad to hear from you directly via our questionnaire!
    I hope my proposal has piqued your interest. If so, please feel free to contact me via email: featuredblogs@internations.org

    Best,
    Simona

  18. Hi Kristen,
    Stopping by to say hi and thank you. I’m moving to Vienna this summer and plan to use your blog as my guidebook. I’ve read it from beginning to end!

    Like you, I’m from the west coast (but from Canada) and love discovering unique places to eat that focus on fresh/local, etc. Thanks for your wonderful creation, and I hope you keep posting your discoveries and thoughtful photos for many years to come!

    Anne L.

    • Anne,
      Thank you SO much for your kind message! This is totally one of the reasons I write this blog—my love of discovering new places and helping newbies in town. What brings you to Vienna? :)
      k.

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  23. Hi Kristen, nice blog! There are some places of “my list” too.
    Have you ever been at “Flein”? I miss it on your list. It’s one of my favourite restaurants in town. Good food, very nice place inside (former kitchen of a “Palais” nearby), beautiful garden, nice guys and, I guess an american chef in the kitchen ;-)
    Best Lissy

    • Hi Lissy!
      Thanks for your kind comment!
      Flein has been on my list FOREVER! I really need to get there. The sad thing is that they don’t allow dogs, and my beagle usually accompanies me when I go out to eat!

      I hope I make it there soon!
      Kristen

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