James Stewart takes an espresso crawl from Vienna to Trieste, where Europe's cafe culture kick-started in 1719

In retrospect, Oliver Goetz may not have been the best person to ask about Vienna's coffee culture. In his artisan roastery in Wieden district, Alt Wien Kaffee (altwein.at), bearded 30-somethings nurse flat whites at a counter and earnestly discuss bean varieties.

"What the historic kaffeehaus serves has similarities to our coffee," Oliver concedes. "I mean, beans are involved." But there is no progress in those cafes, he says. "They navel-gaze. Ask for a flat white and they look at you as if you're


A Habsburg coffee reader