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Mayer am Pfarrplatz - Heuriger, Vienna

Mayer am Pfarrplatz in Vienna offers a delightful wine experience. Known for exquisite wines and an authentic Heuriger ambiance, it's a local gem in Grinzing, inviting visitors to savor quality wines and traditional Viennese dishes in a charming setting. Many locals inform me on the immense popularity of the Heuriger, a view I could foresee at the top of the North Tower of St Stephen's Cathedral in city, where Austrians partake of the cool crisp air during summer to dine, to wine, and to converse amongst friends and families in this wineyard area near the hills..

The tradition-steeped “Mayer am Pfarrplatz” winery, the epitome of Viennese Heuriger culture, has been producing the best Viennese wines since 1683 in Heiligenstadt In 1817, Ludwig van Beethoven lived in the romantic listed suburban home on Pfarrplatz. During his time in Heiligenstadt he worked on his greatest creation: Symphony No. 9. His former home, the first floor of which is accessed from the terrace via a small staircase, still commemorates him to this day. Viennese Heuriger culture brings joie de vivre and enjoyment to the table. An extensive hot and cold buffet with homemade seasonal specialities offers typical Viennese delicacies and is a welcoming place to relax and wile away some time whilst sipping an excellent glass of wine.

"Heuriger" culture encompasses social practices surrounding the Viennese "Heuriger" taverns, which are predominantly family-run businesses that are handed down from generation to generation. The Viennese "Heuriger" at the edge of town stands for congeniality ("Gemütlichkeit") and Viennese music. On the simple tables at a "Heuriger", one typically sees wineglasses and slices of bread with various spreads. While all "Heurige" share certain characteristics such as the free choice of opening times and permission to serve only their own wine, every "Heuriger" also has its own individual features—such as the available selection of foods.

Viennese Heuriger culture goes back to the mediaeval tradition of LeutgebenHeuriger culture dates back to the mediaeval tradition of Leutgeben; the term Heuriger culture goes back to the mediaeval tradition of Leutgeben.Leutgeber denoted all those who enjoyed the right to serve wine from their own vineyards to visitors. Today, the word huerig [used both as an adjective and as an adjectival noun and declined as Heuriger, Heurige, and Heurigen, depending on grammatical case and number] denotes both the wine from the most recent harvest as well as the establishment that serves it. Viennese Heurige are embedded in the landscape of Viennese wine.

For many Viennese winemaking operations, the Heuriger is the most important sales outlet and ensures the continued existence of their vineyards and thus the local cultural landscape’s preservation. Informal accessibility and affordable offerings ensure these unusual taverns’ attractiveness to members of all generations. A sure sign of a Heuriger being open is a wreath or a bunch of greenery hung above the entrance. Depending on the availability of resources, Viennese Heurige set their own opening times over the course of the year; guests can learn of these from the so-called Aussteckkalender. Right up to closing time at midnight, wines including typical types such as the gemischter Satz as well as wine drinks such as the Staubiger or the Gespritzter are served from typical glass pitchers with handles.

As late as the 1970s, it was still customary to bring one’s own food along to a Heuriger. But these days, onsite buffets are the norm; the offerings vary from Heuriger to Heuriger, but slices of roasted meat, spreads, and salads can be had everywhere. Characteristic are also the candy sellers who go from Heuriger to Heuriger, offering chocolate-covered fruits from vendor’s trays. The typical wooden tables with chairs or Heuriger benches are places where contacts are made, friendships are formed, news is exchanged, and Viennese songs are sung.

Viennese Heurige are for the most part family-run establishments where the ways in which things are done both in winemaking and in the kitchen are passed on from generation to generation. The association Der Wiener Heurige, founded in 2003, currently has a membership of 43 Heuriger taverns that are located in the Heuriger areas defined by Viennese provincial law. This association aims to preserve and promote Viennese Heuriger culture. Membership is open to all Viennese Heurige (of which around 100 exist). The association coordinates events, issues press releases, and does public relations and awareness-raising work.

For Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827), his stays in Heiligenstadt, which was at that time still a rural suburb of Vienna, were characterised by profound feelings. He suffered from hearing difficulties and hoped to find a cure by visiting the sanatorium in Heiligenstadt, which is located immediately adjacent to Mayer am Pfarrplatz. As early as 1802, Beethoven had documented, in his own distressed words, his despair over his hearing difficulties in the “Heiligenstädter Testament”.

As we chanced upon this traditional restaurant one fine evening, after catching the local subway and tram over, I saw a traditional church at service, Katholische Kirche St. Jakob, and it was nice and homely and truly representative of an Austrian suburban Catholic Church service. I then walked around the environs of the Heuriger area to take in the ambience of this traditional tavern and restaurant atmosphere, to appreciate the sight, sounds and smell of this amazing place, a very special destination amongst the Austrians!

Wine Flight Sampling

For the wine tasting flight, we had an entire array of Mayer's 6 wines to sample from... this comprise of...


Delicate perlage, an elegant aroma of grapefruit and meadow herbs, a creamy texture and a flattering dosage perfectly round off this Sekt made from Grüner, Veltliner and Welschriesling. This was fresh and enlighting!


Fragrant and fruity notes. Medium body, drinkable and lively style. Well integrated acidity.


Green apple and classic pepper aromas mould this wine. Subtie grapefruit and herbal spices on the palate. A classic and very typical Grüner Veitliner. The ideal accompaniment to food; something very special for me, as it's my first exposure to Gruner Veltliner..


A genuine explosion of aromas reminiscent on the nose of stewed apricots and passion fruit. An enormous fruit structure continues on the palate. The elegant acidity perfectly balances out the powertul body. An archetypal Riesling with a lot of class.


The ancient variety Gelber Muskateller has its origin in the Mediterranean of the antiquity. With its heavy scent. and aromas of exotic fruit, this wine makes the perfect aperitif. The variety shows its broadest aroma spectrum when cultivated in the cool areas under the balancing influence of the Wienerwald hills. We love this!


A bright ruby red wine with spicy aromas on the nose and bright berry fruit.

Delicate bitter chocolate with elegant and mellow tannins on the palate, a spicy finish

Food Sampling

For the soup, we had the Old - Viennese soup pot with beef from pastured oxen, vegetables and soup noodles - this was tasty, simple but I like it.

For the main course, we had the Mayers Fried Chicken which was from the Styrian organic free-range chicken, that is served in a basket The special thing about fried chicken is that it is baked out slowly - so it took about 20 minutes to prepare the dish, absolutely delicious, crispy and went so well with my 6 wines in my tasting flight.

For dessert, we had the legendary cream slice which is based on an old house recipe with fruity berry pulp, very tasty and satisfying. With the accordion played by the in-house musician who was entertaining all the Austrian locals, corporate guests and families in this traditional tavern, I almost felt it was like Christmas minus the carols and hymns - such a homely and warm feeling!

The Winery

Weingut Mayer am Pfarrplatz, the epitome of Viennese Heurigen culture, has a century-old tradition crafting the finest Viennese wines in Heiligenstadt since 1683. The vineyards are situated entirely within the city boundaries of Vienna, in the 17th and 19th districts. Countless awards and prizes at national and international wine competitions emphasize the high quality of the wines from the House of Mayer am Pfarrplatz.

Old vineyards planted generations ago. Flysch and marl soils with plenty of shell limestone formed 3 million years ago and more than 100 different tiny sites with considerably varying soil formations. Warm winds streaming in from the Pannonian plains versus the cooling influence of the Vienna Woods and the Danube River. All these unique factors produce great wines.


Thanks to Tanja and Annabel for recommending the food and wine and looking after me at this beautiful tavern, and sharing the concept with me.

Heuriger Mayer am Pfarrplatz

Location: Pfarrplatz 2, 1990 Vienna

Contact: +43 1 3701287

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