Breathtaking mountain scenery and a long history. Innsbruck has a lot to offer, but, unfortunately, due to the new legal situation in Austria, there are not many places for cigar smokers to enjoy their cigars. It is one thing to inhale a cigarette somewhere outdoors, but smoking a cigar in peace is something different altogether. Brothers and sisters of the leaf visit one another all over the world, so this is why I set out to explore my hometown in terms of culinary and cultural highlights and atmospheric cigar places.
As a local, how can you show your home turf to someone who is just staying for a short time? I experienced one day in Innsbruck myself – from breakfast to dinner, with insights into history and one or two enjoyable cigar breaks. The latter took place exclusively under the open sky, which is wonderful on sunny, warm days. And in winter, you need a very thick coat or a small cigar.
BREAKFAST AND MORNING-COFFEE/CIGAR
The restaurant Das Schindler in Maria-Theresien Strasse in the center of the city offers everything one needs for a comfortable start to the day – from a small breakfast to the most abundant, which is even named after the empress Maria Theresa. After I have feasted extensively, I simply go across the road. The bright spot 360° in the Rathaus Gallerien shopping center facilitates a morning-coffee/cigar indoors as well as outside on the terrace of the café, wine bar, lounge with a panorama view of the mountains.
CULTURE AND CAKE
For a visit to Innsbruck, the Court Church, the Tyrolean Folk Art Museum, and a walk through the Old Town should be part of the program. In the Old Town, I make sure to see the Golden Roof and observe what seems like hundreds of tourists wandering around. With its 133 steps and 31-meter-high structure, the City Tower rewards the brave with a breathtaking view.
After taking in some culture and art, it’s now time to combine cake and cigars, because I feel I have earned some fortification in the afternoon. The oldest konditorei/café in Tyrol is in Innsbruck – Café Munding. Smoking is allowed at the tables outside the front of the café. You can smell the sweet scents wafting from the bakery and admire some remaining medieval buildings of the Old Town while treating yourself to the best cakes in the whole of Innsbruck.
SHOPPING AND NATURE
No, this will not be about recommendations for clothes or shoe stores – I am not the right person for that. Should you run out of supplies, or if your lighter is broken or your cutter has been confiscated at the airport, there is one shop in Innsbruck where, as a traveling cigar smoker, you can find everything your heart desires: the tobacconist Martin Wacker in Sillpark.
Personally, I love smoking out in the open, so I have set out for Ambras Castle park. Another option is the Court Garden on the edge of Innsbruck’s Old Town, but this one lacks a bit in charm.
DINNER AND FINALE
Bringing a day or a trip to a close with a nice meal, a nightcap, and a cigar is one of these moments that rounds everything off. My choice for this is Rosséo. The café, bar, restaurant has everything you need to conclude the evening: fantastic food, a large selection of beverages, and comfortable terrace for smoking. At dinner and with some red wine I review the day, and then with a gin and tonic and a cigar, I determine that Innsbruck can still be experienced in a smoky way. You just have to know the right places and have a bit of luck with the weather.
Photos: Pia Gaudenzi