A common feature of most Austrian festivals is copious quantities of food and drink. And then you have an event that’s all about the food and drink: the Vienna Genuss Festival. Bring a doggy bag.
- Large open-air event in the Stadtpark city park
- Numerous stalls showcase the best of Austrian regional cuisine
- Try, eat or buy for later – a super source of gifts for back home, too.
- The Genuss festival is not a good place to start a new diet
- 2021 dates: TBA (originally planned for May 8-10 in 2020); free entry
- See also: Styrian Spring festival | Waldviertelpur Festival | Harvest Festival
A gourmet feast
Most of Austria is actually taken up by mountains, forestry, vineyards, and family farms (often all in the same area).
As a result, there’s a rich culinary history with a dazzling array of regional food and drink specialities. Even Vienna joins in, with its local wineries and farms that produce, for example, over 60% of the country’s cucumbers. Bet you didn’t expect that.
Anyway, vast numbers of these regional specialities turn up at the Genuss Festival, held over three days in the Stadtpark city park. The event is the largest of its kind in Austria, with around 190 exhibitors lining the paths and squares dotted around the park.
Think of it as a gourmet walking tour of Austria.
This is the place to sample dishes from across the provinces, try local wines, beer, and Schnapps, or pick up some cured meats, herbs, spices, pastries, honey, mustards, oils, dressings, vinegar, jams, pasta, sausages, bread etc. etc. for later. Many products come in stylish containers and packaging, so make excellent gifts.
In short, the Genuss Festival is the perfect place to convert cash into calories.
The event has its cultural element, too. Many stallholders dress in traditional regional garb, there is music, and stands often demonstrate the skills and philosophies of Austria’s butchers, bakers and
candlestick makers farmers.
2021 dates and tickets
The 2020 fell victim to Coronavirus concerns, and I will put up 2021 details as soon as they reach me. Normally, the event takes place on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday in May.
No tickets are required – just stroll into the park and follow the paths between the rows of stands.
How to get to the Genuss festival
The Stadtpark is fairly central and, rather cunningly, has its own subway station at one end (on the U4 line). At the other end of the park is the Stubentor station, which is on the U3 subway line.
Trams/buses: Tram 2 stops outside the park at Weihburggasse, while the 3A and 74A buses stop at Stubentor.
P.S. One good reason to use the Stadtpark station is the above-ground entrance pavilion designed by Otto Wagner, with its iconic white/green styling and Jugendstil (Art Nouveau) motifs.