Nowhere in Austria is the fact that food unites, more evident than in Vienna, where the doors to a half a dozen different cultures will open just a few steps from your own front door.
Here are a few of Vienna’s best Croatian restaurants.
From a town called Benkovac in Dalmatia (Croatia) comes Ante Paić, the owner of the Briuni restaurant, which he opened 14 years ago. The fun-loving restaurateur defies the challenges of life with the attitude that has already proven itself: to look at everything positively. Which is why his large extended family all find time to help in this contagiously happy enterprise.
In his Restaurant Briuni he offers dishes of Dalmatian Mediterranean cuisine, such as fish, pasta, but also pizza.
The octopus, believe it or not, is the most popular dish on the menu.
His plans for the future are to stay healthy, to get through the pandemic in one piece and to be able to enjoy his retirement, which he will start in a year. The question of which of those relatives will take over remains open.
2., Blumauergasse 2
Six years ago, Vedran Markić came from Karlovac (Croatia) to Vienna to take over the restaurant Lubin, which has now been in his family for 18 years.
His biggest challenge, it turned out, was learning German. But in the meantime, Markić has settled in very well. His philosophy of life is korak po korak (“step by step”) which often gave him the strength and hope he needed during Corona-times. His plans for the future, which will hopefully be Covid-free, are to maintain the Lubin quality and to continue to satisfy his guests. But the restaurateur could well imagine more restaurants like this one, too, so maybe he’ll expand…
The Lubin offers variations of Dalmatian cuisine, mainly fish, but occasionally also meat.
The “wolf of the sea,” the Wolfbarsch, or sea bass, for two or more, is a big hit at the classic Croatian fish restaurant.
3., Hainburgerstraße 48
by Romana Jarić
Spomenka Selmanović comes from Varaždin, Croatia, and has been in Vienna since she was 14 years old. At 24, she opened her first restaurant before taking over Kulinarium six years ago. At that time Selmanović decided to turn the Kulinarium from its menu of international dishes into a fish restaurant with Dalmatian Mediterranean cuisine and add number seven to its name. Twice a week Selmanović gets her fresh fish from Croatia.
The fish soup: “You won’t get fish soup like this anywhere in Austria,” says Selmanović.
Selmanović says she has overcome life’s hurdles with her love for people, for food, for gastronomy.
The entrepreneur has many plans for the future. She has also organized culinary trips to Istria with great success and is planning on continuing with boat trips to islands with wineries as well as opening a restaurant in a boutique hotel on the peninsula, Pelješac. And all the while, she will be finishing the latest reconstruction of the vaulted cellar in Kulinarium 7, where she plans to build a wine bar in the space below the restaurant.
7., Sigmundsgasse 1