Café Sperl

The History

1880, the coffeehouse was built according to the design of the ring road architects Gross and Jelinek for Jacob Ronacher. That same year, the cafe Ronacher was bought by the family „Sperl“ an in 1884 Adolf Kratochwilla become the owner , who retained the now well-established name „Cafe Sperl“ at.


In the  Sperl „lived“ architects, artists, musicians, actors, singers, generals and high officials. Among the regulars were the Archdukes Josef Ferdinand and Karl Ferdinand and chief of staff of Conrad Hötzen- dorf. (Conrad was in the summer of 1914, one of the main supporters of an immediate war against the Kingdom of Serbia in response to the assassination of the heir in Sarajevo) Most users circular shapes the Cafe Sperl about the artist and military Cafe. Despite the divergent political and social differences the coexistence was possible.


Of particular note is the 1895 established „Hagen society“. From parts of Hagen society and the so-cal- led seven-Club („C7“), Josef Maria Olbrich, Josef Hoffmann, Frederick mushroom, Kolo Moser, Max Kurzweil, Leo Kainradl and Adolf Karpellus  1896/1897 formed the Secession The Hagenbund was dis- solved in the war winter of 1942.


Around 1890, the operetta inspired the Viennese and as now, the Raimund Theater and the Theater an der Wien were at that time the main stages of the crowd favorites. The Cafe Sperl was the root of the coffee Stars and composers like Lewinsky, Girardi, Eysler, case, Zeller, Heuberger, Millöcker, Lehar and Kalman.These artists influenced 1930‘s happening on the stage and in the Sperl. Is in the Cafe Sperl and visitors has always been „regular guest“ in the best sense of the word, the tourist is involved in this process and come back. Wien bleibt Wien and the Sperl the Sperl.


In June 1968 Manfred Staub („dust“) took over the Cafe Sperl from the family Kratochwilla . In order not to sink into the „dust“ of the story, he worked with the Federal Heritage Office and the architect Nairz out a plan for restoration of the premises. It should remain the patina, but the convenience, hygiene and the modern demands.


Today, the writers are increasingly represented and the master tables occupations expand. Many stars from the musicals of the Theater an der Wien stay at the Sperl. International filming raise

awareness, such as: 2011, Sigmund-Freud-film „A Dangerous Method“ by Cronenberg or about „Before Sunrise“ with Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy. The Philharmonics played here the music of Johann Strauss, and Fritz Kreisler in „cover-versions“ ( DVD )


The regular literates of the recent past like Thomas Sautner, Robert Menasse and Michael Köhlmeier are an inseparable part of the current image of the Sperl. In order to take the literature to the cafe there were also readings by Pavel Kohout, Peter Marginter, Peter Henisch, Friederike Mayröcker, and many others.


1988 chose the English Star food critic Roy Ackerman Sperl for the „Coffee House Of The Year“ among 200 European coffee houses. 1999 Sperl was ranked in the coffee houses in the „rump“ ranking in the first place. 1998 Sperl was appointed Austrian cafe of the Year and 2004 Manfred Staub received the „Golden Coffee Bean“  and in 2012 the „Golden Coffee Pot“. His wife Monika Staub is careful that the legendary „Vienna Kitchen“ and the „daily homemade pastries „ are the delight of their guests.


Small Timetable

- 1880 -

JJakob Ronacher opens his own coffeehouse; built and furnished by Gross&Jelinek.

Mr. Sperl takes over Café Ronacher and renames it to its current name Café Sperl.


- 1884 -

Adolf Kratochwilla takes over Café Sperl;owned by his family until 1968. Café Sperl becomes host to Secessionists first meeting (April 3, 1897) consisting of architects, artists and militaries.


- 1895 -

June 1st - The „Siebenerclub“ founded their regular meeting place in Café Sperl. part of its members led to the creation of the Secession (est. 1897)


- 1897 -

May 22nd - the Secession is established through regular meetings in Café Sperl (members: Engelhart, Mill, Kolo Moser, Olbrich, etc. ) Its principle: To glace the trade of exhibiting on an artistic  basis deliverated from market forces.


- 1929 -

January - February: Winter Catastrophe: coffeehouses including Café Sperl close down for weeks due to frozen water pipes which makes heating impossible.


- 1941 -

March 25th - According to regulations, dark curtains must be hung in Café Sperl.


- 1942 -

April 6th - Further food ration (35th Assignment). Coffeehouses serve only beverages also coffee substitutes.


- 1945 -

September 1st - The French take the 6th District into their zone from the Russians.


- 1950 -

The Espresso Bars moved into Vienna; with less expenditure and staff, its consumer prices are inexpensive. It becomes a competitor to traditional coffeehouses.


- 1968 -

June 1st - Manfred Staub becomes new owner of Café Sperl.


- 1979 -

Café Sperl  price for small „Mokka“ with

whipped cream is 11 Schilling, large „Mokka“ is 19 Schilling,  „Melange“ is 16 Schilling.


- 1983 -

Café Sperl  goes under restoration; carefully preserving its historical monuments and spirit of 100 years traditional coffeehouse atmosphere. Also the gym hall floor was removed to expose its original parquet floor.


- 1983 -

Vienna celebrates its  „300 Years of Viennese Coffeehouse Tradition Jubilee“; coinciding with the end of the

2nd Turkish Siege


- 1988 -

Vienna has 530 Coffeehouses, 650 Café Restaurants, 1060 Espresso Bars, 250 Pastry Cafés and 120 „coffee-to-go“ places. English Gastronomy Critic Roy Ackerman rates Café Sperl as best Café in Austria. In 1988, Roy Ackerman reviews 200 European coffeehouses and gives Café Sperl „Coffee of the Year“ of Austria.


- 1999 -

Café Sperl is ranked number 1 of all coffeehouses in the „Tafelspitz“ ranking by Horowitz.


- 2012 -

Manfred und Monika Staub win with the Café Sperl the „goldene Kaffeekanne“

Small Time Table

If you have not taken the small time-table in our cafe - you can download it here as a PDF.


Sperl Torte

In the living room for creative and artists since 1880 the delicious Sperl torte was called into life.



The Viennese coffee house culture is inextricably linked to the world-famous Café Sperl. Learn more about our history.


Traditional coffee house since 1880. Jakob Ronacher opens the 'Ronacher' built and furnished by Gross & Jelinek. In December the cafe is taken over by the Cafetier Sperl and gets the name Cafe Sperl.

Opening Hours

Mon - Sat   7am - 10pm

Sun           10am - 8pm

July & August: Sunday closed


Gumpendorferstrasse 11

A-1060 Wien

Phone: +43 1 5864158


© Copyright 2017 Cafe Sperl

Opening Hours

Mon - Sat   7am - 10pm

Sun           10am - 8pm

July & August: Sunday closed