Sunday 14 August 2011

Café Hawelka
Where once upon a time is now

"... it must be said

that the Viennese coffeehouse

is a particular institution
which is not comparable to any other
in the world..."

* Stefan Zweig,
"The World of Yesterday.
Memories of a European"

I remember reading those lines
for the first time, far from Vienna,
and I have reread Zweig's poignant memoirs
a few times since.

It still seems unreal
that I live here now and
more than five years have passed
since I first set foot into Hawelka's.
I still think of Stefan Zweig
when I go there.

Hawelka's coffee Melange is among Vienna's best.
I often need two, to last me through my readings,
with a soft-boiled egg - brain food, you know.

Saturday morning at
Café Hawelka


Images and own text
© by Merisi


  1. You are making me feel quite ashamed that I have spent so very little time discovering Vienna. I am not a city person and prefer the countryside, but your photographs make me want to explore our gorgeous city!
    Have you been to Danieli's in the 1st district? I think it's the best Italian restaurant in Vienna.

  2. Captivating photos, Merisi. Café Hawelka looks a nice place!
    I would love to be there reading a book or a newspaper and with a cup of coffee on hands.

    I read the book that Stefan Zweig wrote about Brazil, "Brazil, Land of the Future" and also his short stories.

    Big hug for you too.

  3. Café Hawelka Dorotheergasse is my mind, a marvellous place to dream about, may be one day, I'll seat in this place!!!!

  4. Country Girl,
    oh, the city waits for you (very patiently) while you enjoy the countryside! :-)
    I have not been to Danieli's, it's on my list now that you mention it (I cook Italian, so I am always curious to see how authentic a place is).

    Sonia a. mascaro,
    I have not read Zweig's book about Brazile, but I have read that he loved Brazile dearly and had much hope of finding peace in his new home.

    thank you!

    may you do so soon!

  5. looks wonderful...these coffeehouses will make me get to Vienna one of these days!!

  6. Seems like most everyone is pretty well dressed.

  7. Merisi, I have had such a fine time getting caught up with your most recent posts. Might I say that as i was reading, I was sipping my evening's iced coffee from a glass that greatly resembled those in your photos. Obviously, my instant-coffee based iced brew was not otherwise comparable to anything in Viennese cafes!

    I've made a note of Stefan Zweig and will search for his books when I next visit my marvelous library's stacks.

    My only visit to Vienna, way back in 1982, did introduce me to the charms of coffee houses, and their special atmosphere. I continue to ask myself when I might return.


  8. You make Vienna so inviting. I love the glimpses into everyday life.
    The racks of newspapers and your "brain food" are delicious invitations to your life.

  9. Dear Merisi - thanks to you, I have discovered Stefan Zweig, and bought "The World Of Yesterday" (as well as "The Post Office Girl") at Shakespeare & Co. on the Sterngasse, and have been diving headfirst into this glorious world of yesteryear. That, and I love Hawelka - I can't wait until next year, when I will return!

  10. Merisi,
    I hope you are working on a coffee table book about Vienna's coffee houses. You must certainly have the most comprehensive collection of beautiful images of Vienna's coffee culture. I look forward to buying one of your first edition books. Here's to you!

  11. Really lovely photos. They could be paintings!

  12. Beautiful -- one would be inspired to write especially well in such surroundings.

  13. That first photo is so perfect!

  14. :-) Chosen! Darling, it is fabulous the anticipation for the pleasure.
    Can't wait to tell you what seduced me!

  15. Merisi, with your nice pictures you describe so well the atmosphere of the Café.

  16. I wouldn't go either into Hawelka's if the tables were topseyturvey like that!

  17. I have such good memories from that cafe, and from several others :-)

  18. Thank you all for your kind comments! :-)

    how wonderful! I have not read "The Post Office Girl", need to check it out, thank you for the tip!

    Martha in Vienna,
    a coffee table book? Wouldn't that be something (I am afraid the Viennese would not be happy about it).

    Carol @ Paris Breakfasts:
    You belieben zu scherzen! *

    * Gotta be kidding! ;-)

  19. Ah, but the tourists would love your coffee table book on the coffee houses of Vienna, as would many coffee lovers worldwide. I think you should make it happen. It would be wonderful!!!


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