Spirit of Vienna
Let us take you on a journey of exploration. Discover the spirit of Vienna and why Julius Meinl is an ambassador for Viennese coffee house culture – and a company with a mission to carry the magic of Vienna out into the world.
How many words have been spoken and sung about the unique spirit of Vienna? How many times has it been depicted and praised? It holds as much fascination today as it ever did.
But what lies behind Vienna's unique atmosphere and appeal? Is it the characteristic charm that the city exudes whatever the season, or its status as the world's best city to live in? Is it the vast number of imperial attractions or the diverse range of cultural events for which the Austrian capital is so famous? Vienna's secret recipe contains a whole range of ingredients, no doubt – but what we love most is the unrivalled richness of culinary highlights that Vienna offers its citizens as well as visitors from all over the world. Wiener Schnitzel, delicious cakes and pastries and a truly unique coffee culture, shaped and made famous across the globe by Julius Meinl for over a century.
The secret behind Vienna's unique spirit
A whole range of attributes contribute to Vienna's charm, of course, but there's more to it than that. The secret behind the city's unique spirit is the reason it stands apart from other beautiful capitals across the world: In Vienna, past and present are perfectly balanced. Only in Vienna can you fully immerse yourself in local cultural heritage without even stepping foot into a museum. Only in Vienna will you find such a vibrant urban environment with so many inspiring locations – from baroque streetscapes and imperial palaces to the Donaukanal with its colourful graffiti, and last but not least the thriving contemporary coffee houses, which offer a glimpse of the city's up-and-coming trends in design and lifestyle.
Vienna's coffee houses – at the heart of city life
The Viennese coffee house fulfils a special role in the capital's daily rhythm – you could say it's a microcosm of Viennese life. Names such as Café Landtmann or Café Central are known across the world, but all of Vienna's coffee houses are living representations of what makes Vienna so special. And well worth a trip just for its coffee houses alone!
Alongside the wide selection of coffees, cakes and international newspapers, Viennese coffee houses are also famous for their marble-topped tables, Thonet chairs, newspaper stands and chandeliers. Generations of creatives, intellectuals and writers have used Vienna's coffee houses as extended living rooms – and the practice continues to this day. In these unique cultural oases they meet, talk, debate, read and write, or simply read the newspaper.
Any visitor can thus get a true taste of Viennese lifestyle and culture simply by drinking a single cup of coffee – traditionally brought to you on a silver tray accompanied by a glass of water by a Viennese waiter with a characteristically charming sense of humour.
In short: The Viennese coffee house is a place where coffee and time are consumed, but only the coffee is found on the bill. No wonder that Vienna's coffee house culture was officially listed by UNESCO as part of Austria's National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2011.
Enjoy the spirit of Vienna – with typical Viennese coffee from Julius Meinl
One of our two roasteries can still be found in the 16th district of Vienna, where it was established in 1911. The roastery specialises in processing top premium Arabica blends using the classic Viennese roasting process. This is typically a medium to dark roast, notable for the rich brown colour of the beans. It intensifies the character of any coffee, regardless of origin, and accentuates its flavours. The Vienna Roast is possibly the hardest roasting level to master. Leave the beans in the roaster for too long and too much oil will form on the surface of the beans, end the roasting process just moments too early and no oil will form at all.
A range of different coffees produced by our Vienna roastery are available to end-consumers as part of the Vienna Collection and to business clients through The Originals Line.
Every bean has a story
The Originals Line is named in honour of our founder's life story. In 1862, Julius Meinl I opened his first shop, where he sold spices, rice, tea and green coffee beans. In those days, coffee was still sold raw and then roasted at home in the oven or in a pan. Legend has it that a servant girl from a Viennese household came running into the shop in tears because she had burnt the expensive coffee beans. Thus the idea of roast coffee was born – Julius Meinl I launched roasted coffee as a new product, thereby setting a superior quality standard.
But it was his son Julius Meinl II who truly revolutionised coffee roasting. In his newly developed process, the beans no longer came into contact with the coal gas. Unlike with the previous method, the coffee beans bore no after-taste and kept their full, natural aroma. Julius Meinl was the first European coffee company to establish this roasting process.
Traditional Viennese recipes and the stories they tell
Whether you're a professional preparing a typical Viennese coffee, a customer in a coffee house or someone enjoying a coffee at home – let Julius Meinl take you on a journey to explore the rich variety of Viennese coffee recipes.
From a small "Schwarzer" or "Brauner" and the "Wiener Melange", through to the more elaborate "Franziskaner" and "Einspänner", every coffee recipe has a story to tell. Traditional Viennese recipes have their very own charm and are as delicious today as when they were first created. You can start enjoying them here and take a (virtual) sip of Vienna's unique spirit that is hidden in every cup of Julius Meinl coffee.