One restaurant that I dined at in Vienna was Steirereck, a two Michelin star restaurant. I went for lunch, which was more affordable experience than dinner.
Steirereck is located in a somewhat funky reflective building in Stadtpark. The park itself is also quite nice, if you get a chance to walk around.
We were the first guests to arrive for the lunch service. The decor inside was understated and elegant. There are a couple of separate dining areas, so it feels like a more intimate dining experience since you don’t see all of the diners in the entire restaurant.
I went for the four-course lunch menu, as I chose to skip the cheese course.
We started with selections from the bread cart. I sampled the black pudding and blood sausage bread as well as the rye bread with honey and lavender. One small downside (or upside depending on your perspective) was that we got the end pieces of the loaves since we were the first table served for lunch.
The breads themselves were delicious and served with three sticks of butter with different toppings. Not pictured here were the amuse bouches that we were served.
My first course was the char with beeswax, yellow carrot, “pollen”, and sour cream, one of the signature dishes of the restaurant. It’s a slightly gimmicky dish in that they come out with the char and pour the beeswax in front of you (and then take it away so it cooks), but the char was cooked perfectly and it was absolutely delicious. The caviar served on the side was great, as was the jelly infused with beeswax. A super inventive and wonderful dish.
My next course was green asparagus with sheep’s cheese, daylilies, and bergamot. To me, this was the biggest miss of the meal. I was hoping for a treatment of vegetables like you might find at L’arpege or Manresa, but this was just not that great.
My main course was the charcoal grilled tubers with tumeric “caviar” and shoots. This was a giant portion and generally tasty, but it wasn’t that remarkable otherwise.
My dining companion ordered the cheese course, and out came an enormous cheese cart. There are so, so many choices in front of you. I’m not a big cheese person, but it might be worth it to order the cheese course just for this experience.
The dessert courses were great and satisfying. My dining companion had an absolutely delectable souffle; I had a wonderful preserved calamansi (a citrus fruit) with cream cheese, gingerbread, and walnuts. Interesting flavors, good contrasting textures, and not too sweet. Everything I want in dessert.
Finally, there were some petit fours from the kitchen. They were cute, if a little simple.
Overall, it was an enjoyable dining experience. The char was by far the best dish of the meal, but otherwise, I wouldn’t go out of my way to recommend this restaurant.