Innsbruck Restaurants have changed quite a bit since we arrived in 2010. As meat-eating South Africans, we often crave a good hamburger but they were weirdly absent from restaurant menus. Thank goodness, the humble meat patty is now making a comeback. There is nothing wrong with the Austrian schnitzel or dumpling, but one can only eat so many. It took some time for us to discover a selection of restaurants catering to our different culinary preferences. The 5 Innsbruck restaurants below have become family favourites. They are not necessarily trendy or upmarket, but it’s where Mattheus is also happy.
Meaty. Saucy. Mild exotic flavours. This is what makes the Nepalese restaurant Himal one of our favourite Innsbruck Restaurants. A bonus is that we are always greeted with a smile and treated like regulars.
The Himal experience begins with free poppadoms and dipping sauces. Despite a varied menu, the De Beers almost always order two of five main dishes – one lamb and one chicken. The prices range from €10,90 to €13,20. Our absolute favourite is the Khasi Mustang, which is cubed lamb in a yogurt-coconut sauce with cardamom. Most mains are served with basmati rice and naan bread, with everything coming in separate bowls to make sharing easy.
Monday to Saturday from 11:30 – 14:30 and 18:00 – 22:30
Sunday and Public Holidays from 18:00 – 22:00
Reservations: +43 512 588 588
Address: Universitätstraße 13 (next to the Grauer Bär Hotel)
Who isn’t in the mood for Italian food every now and then? L’Osteria is our first choice for pizza, although they also serve excellent pasta. The pizzas are so big that the 3 of us can easily share one if we also order a tomato salad on the side.
Sharing, with different toppings on each half, is common practice. It’s even more helpful that the two halves are served on separate plates. Coenraad likes the Capricciosa and I the Quattro Formaggi or the Gamberetti. Believe it or not, Mattheus eats more of the salad than of the pizza.
L’Osteria is one of the few restaurants who cater for kids with a special table where they can colour in. They also bring the kids a piece of pizza dough to play with (ask if they don’t offer). If they’re not too busy, they will even bake the little ones’ creations.
Opening hours: Every day from 11:00 – 24:00
Reservations: +43 512 5801 4411 and online @ http://losteria.at/reservierung/
Address: Erlerstraße 17 (behind the Kaufhaus Tyrol)
For traditional Austrian food with a twist, combined with a peaceful setting, Löwenhaus is one of the nicer Innsbruck restaurants to visit when it’s warm enough to sit outside. Their salads are great, and so are the freshly baked flat breads from their stone oven. This is also the place to try traditional schnitzel and sausages.
Kids are free to move around in the enclosed garden setting with a small play area. Löwenhaus also has its own small parking lot, with lots more street parking in the area.
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 11:30 – 22:30
Reservations: +43 676 8844 7706 / [email protected]
Address: Rennweg 5
4. Posidonas Der Grieche
The big attraction for me at this Greek restaurant are the lamb chops (hey, I grew up on lamb from our own backyard). We also like the interior, which is more on the fancy side. Like most other restaurants in Innsbruck, they have a very reasonable lunch menu (from 11:30 – 15:00 on weekdays). Three good-sized lamb chops with fried potatoes and a soup or salad starter is only €9,95. Coenraad likes the gyros or the mixed meat plate, starting at €6,95. The meal is finished off nicely with something sweet that comes on the house. Mattheus usually eats our soup or salad and keeps himself busy by building houses with the beer coasters.
Opening hours: Every day from 10:00 to 24:00 (kitchen from 11:30 – 23:00)
Reservations: +43 512 908 204
Address: Innrain 38 (on the island behind the ? church)
An eat-as-much-as-you-like Asian buffet restaurant, especially attractive on a Saturday afternoon after a morning on the ski slopes. Due to its popularity, the food at Haikky is always fresh. Mattheus stuffs himself with sushi before scouring the dessert fridge. Coenraad can’t get enough of the crispy fried duck in a delicious sauce, and I never know what to take or leave. You can also put together your own plate with fresh meat, seafood and vegetables for the wok chefs to fry with your choice of sauce.
If you are hungry, Haikky is incredibly good value for money. This is especially true from 11:30 to 16:30 from Monday to Saturday when the buffet costs €11,80 per adult and €6,80 per child up to 6 years. In the evenings and on Sundays and public holidays the prices go up to €16,80 and €8,80.
Monday to Saturday from 11:30 – 16:30 and 17:00 – 22:00
Sundays and public holidays from 11:30 – 22:00
Reservations: +43 512 322 625
Address: Olympiastraße 17 (in the same building as the Merkur supermarket)