Dine With a Stranger


Why just search restaurant one after the other for the next culinary kick when you can make the most unconventional experience of your next dinner? Everybody can go to a restaurant, but consider these guerilla cooks, social or secret dinner clubs and pop-up kitchens for your next meal that will not only supply you with delicious food and drinks but also satisfy the foodie within you. Plus, you might be seated across or next to like-minded friends you just haven’t met yet!

Secret Dinners and Dinner Clubs in Vienna

Here’s what the city has to offer in the dining off the beaten path category.

The Dining Room of Angelika Apfelthaler was the first secret dining event established in Vienna and has grown to quite some popularity since Travel&Leisure voted it amongst the 10 best secret dining experiences worldwide.

Eschi Fiege’s Secrect Diner is only open for max. 12 invited guests and their chaperonage, although Eschi has been known to make rare exceptions and include particularly friendly emailers to her invitation list and the dinners in her kitchen. Lately, Eschi offers lunch to those who know where to look for the “Lunch is served”-signal, a tablecloth hanging from her window.

It’s not her own kitchen that Bianca Gusenbauer of “Geheime Schnatterei” transforms into an incubator for social-culinary adventures, but the kitchens of hosts that allow her to take over the kitchen and invite five to six others to the semi-private event. Getting to know other participants is part of the concept, so everybody changes seats during the courses.

Re-purposed dining venues

More on the vaudeville-side of happenings is “le petit orgie” where cooks and artists join forces to organize an experience for all senses: Creative culinary with artistic performances of both, musicians and dancers. They provide vegetarian courses as well as delicious meat in what is during the day a conventional restaurant on Kirchengasse.

Drahtwarenhandlung is another re-purposed pop-up restaurant. The three media technicians who work there during the week get behind the bar and stove on Friday and Saturday evenings to chat with their guests and satisfy their hunger.

Lately there has also been a huge run on the Betonküche that opens for a few days in one of the many empty cellar-restaurants of Vienna to welcome those you managed to place their reservations early enough as well as to an different young guest cook every evening.

At Hofzeile 27, you can not only meet your fellow guests, but also cook Sibylle Fellner-Kisler and her family in their natural habitat, their Döbling house, when her private dinner club opens for the evening. On Sundays there is also a private brunch she prepares for a dozen or so guests.

Conversations galore

Another occasion to get to know the chef as well as the other guests is to group around the big table of M77‘s Margot Glaszer-Seitschek. The trained doctor served her motto dinners once a month to a handful of guests.

Last but not least there are the Vienna Coffeehouse Conversations. At two renowned Viennese Cafes you will be served a rather traditional dinner and be seated across a stranger with whom you can discuss prepared questions. How important is money for you? Which forms of love have you experienced? This way you are sure to get to know your vis-à-vis. Plus: guests from abroad are not only welcome but also sought after, so international experiences are guaranteed.

Did this wet your appetite? Then enjoy your spoonful of a new dining experience!

Photos: 12, 3

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