Summer means gelato season in Austria. When I grew up, we did have the big industrial ice cream brands but I always loved to go to the ice cream parlours and eat freshly made gelato. These ice cream places are very often run by Italian families who spend the summers in Vienna selling their delicious ice cream and stay in Italy during the winter. This fresh ice cream is something I always crave when I am abroad. Let me share my favourite gelato places in Vienna.
Innere Stadt (City Centre, First District)
A visit to the ice cream parlour is a must for me every summer I come back to Vienna. They sell two types of ice cream: “normal” sorts (with and without dairy) and the “Spezialeis”. My favourite is by far the Nougat-Spezialeis and the Walderdbeer-Spezialeis (wild strawberry), which is only available during the wild strawberry season. (Kupferschmiedgasse 15; it is actually directly on Tuchlauben, next to the flower shop)
Eissalon am Schwedenplatz
This is a Viennese institution and my mum is obsessed with their ice cream. I like the traditional flavours such as chocolate, banana and strawberry there. (Franz-Josefs-Kai 17)
When this place opened, people went crazy and queued up for half an hour. It was one of the first ice cream parlours to sell dairy-free ice cream. I really like the dairy free pear ice cream. They also have “normal” and experimental sorts like goat cheese (which is actually quite tasty). There are two branches in Vienna. (Rotenturmstraße 14 and Mariahilfer Straße 33)
Paolo Bortolotti came to Vienna more than 50 years ago and his family owns one of the traditional Italian parlours. Along the popular shopping street Mariahilfer Straße, Bortolotti has several branches. If you are not a big fan of ice cream, they also serve delicious Italian pastries and coffee. (Mariahilfer Straße 22, 42, 66, 94, inside C&A and Thaliastraße 71)
Gelateria La Romana, Mariahilf
This gelateria was recommended by a reader after I published this guide. As he suggested, I tried their “Sacher” ice cream and also “Biscotto della Nonna”. Gelateria La Romana was founded more than 70 years ago in Rimini, Italy, and has branches in Italy, Spain and Vienna. Apart from their delicious ice cream, they also serve other Italian desserts such as Sicilian granita and cakes. They have definitely become my go-to ice cream shop whenever I am in the area. (Stiftgasse 15-17)
Leones Gelato, Alsergrund, Innere Stadt & Leopoldstadt
Another recommendation by one of my readers and she was absolutely right: Leones definitely deserves to be on this list. Their ice cream is really creamy. Definitely try the dark chocolate gelato. If you need something refreshing on a hot summer day, try “pineapple-mint” (without dairy). (Lange Gasse 78, Freisingergasse 1 and Paterstraße 16)
Eissalon De Rocco, Währing
I discovered this ice cream shop by accident and tried their chocolate ice cream. What can I say, it is definitely worth venturing out to the 18th district for it! (Kutschkergasse 40)
Eissalon Ruckenbauer, Döbling
In Vienna’s northern district of Doebling, there is a family-run ice cream parlour which is a true insiders’ tip. Their gelato (for which you might have to queue) is worth the trip to Doebling, located about 20-25 minutes from the city centre (tram line 38 takes you directly from Schottentor to the station Sieveringer Straße opposite of the ice cream shop). (Billrothstraße 83A)
Eissalon Tichy, Favoriten
There is no ice cream guide about Vienna without mentioning Tichy. It is located in the Favoriten district at the outer parts of Vienna but it has become a must-visit for ice cream lovers. Frankly, I am not a big fan of their cones with scoops. I go there for two things: Firstly, the “Nougatbecher”, nougat ice cream, chocolate sauce and whipped cream. (I recommend to share that because it is quite a big bowl.) And secondly, the speciality which made Tichy famous: Eismarillenknoedel. Marillenknoedel are an Austrian dessert: dumplings made of potato dough or curd cheese dough covering an apricot. Tichy turned this dessert into ice cream. We drive to Tichy and stock up our freezer with these because there is no summer weekend without Eismarillenknoedel. Subway line U1 takes you directly from the city centre (Stephansplatz or Karlsplatz) to Tichy at Reumannplatz. (Reumannplatz 13)
Thank you for all your messages about your favourite ice cream places in Vienna. I love it when you share your travel secrets or those about your neighbourhood. Is your favourite gelateria still missing here? Please let me know!
For more information about Vienna, check out my posts:
Graetzl-Guides (neighbourhood guides): Gumpendorfer Straße and Lindengasse
Jugendstil Art in Vienna and around: Steinhof Church and Hospital and Jugenstil Neighbourhood in Brunn am Gebirge
Article pubished in 5/2018, updated in 8/2019. All information as of the date of publishing/updating. We cannot accept responsibility for the correctness or completeness of the data, or for ensuring that it is up to date. All recommendations are based on the personal experience of Elisabeth Steiger, no fees were received.