Vegan and vegetarian restaurants are becoming much more prevalent everywhere. The city of Innsbruck is no exception. 3 years ago I wrote another blog about being a vegan in Innsbruck (yes, vegans can survive longer than 3 years…) and today there are even more options in town!
In this blog I’ll go from a vegan franchise with more “fast-food vibes” to a booming new place with great comfort food, to a cozy pop-up with a more sophisticated kitchen. Think burgers, fries, lasagna, and cauliflower “wings”, to soup, Brussels sprouts, and saffron rice desserts. Don’t read this blog while hungry!
Swing Kitchen - Tasty and convenient
My first stop was Swing Kitchen. I had never heard of it before but apparently it has multiple restaurants in Austria. The menu consists of mostly burgers with fries and some extra sides you would expect in a place like this. What immediately caught my attention was the drinking mugs you get when ordering a menu. This mug can be used to (re)fill your drink at the soda machine in the back. Overall, they paid attention to not using unnecessary plastic and most of the food was wrapped in paper.
I ordered the menu with the spicy burger and fries. It was a good burger! I think this type of places is great for the vegan/vegetarian movement as it brings this type of food to the bigger public and shows that vegan food can be easy and delicious too. The restaurant is conveniently located in the old town, 100 meters from the Golden Roof, and open every day from 11am-10pm.
Green Flamingo - My personal favourite
My next stop was Green Flamingo. I’ve been to this place many times before and was quite excited to write about it. It quickly grew from “the new place in town” to a solid first choice when thinking about going for great vegan food. Green Flamingo is owned by Kasper, a Danish guy, and his girlfriend Kim, who’s from The Netherlands, and they’ve been living in Innsbruck for the past 9 years. The place has a pleasant edge to it and the co-owner Kasper, a heavily tattooed dude, brings a great energy to the place. I asked him a few questions:
How did your vegan journey start?
“We both went Vegan around 8 years ago shortly after arriving in the alps, we both were vegetarians for a long time before that, so it was a natural step to take after getting more knowledge about the horror of the dairy industry. It was not super easy at the time, today you have way more possibilities and alternatives.”
When did you open Green Flamingo? And what brought you to opening a vegan restaurant in Innsbruck?
“We opened Green Flamingo on August 1st, 2019, and it‘s been a success since that first day. We didn’t expect it to explode so fast” Kasper laughs, “but we are VERY grateful it did. We‘ve had a two rough years with lockdowns etc, but still managed to grow our nice little restaurant.”
“We both have experience in the restaurant business, and before Green Flamingo I spent my years in Austria working at a busy bar/restaurant where I learned a lot. Kim used to own and manage a big hotel with restaurant in Holland.”
“Vegan options in restaurants were hard to find in Innsbruck a couple of years ago, so we thought: Let‘s create our own vegan options and show the world that vegan food is awesome. We decided to use our restaurant skills to create something a bit different, but still professional that could save animals. To show people its not necessary to hurt animals to enjoy some good food in a fun and relaxed environment.
For us it's all about the animals and the planet. The healthy part is a bonus.
To conclude on Green Flamingo: if you’re vegan and visiting Innsbruck, this place is a must-go. The are open Wed. - Sun. from 12pm-10pm. Oh, before I forget, order the cauliflower wings. You're welcome 😉
Sloe / Oscar Kocht - Cozy and sophisticated
If you like it a little more “chic” or sophisticated, I have the right place for you. Oscar Kocht is a well-known concept in Innsbruck. But as Oscar is abroad, Christa and Sonja are taking over with their pop-up restaurant Sloe. The restaurant is located in Pradl, a 20 minute walk from old-town or easily reached by tram. All guests share one big table and the kitchen is right next to it. The 6-course menu is predetermined and either fully vegan or vegetarian. They try to pay attention to cooking with local ingredients and in-season.
What I really liked was how they were able to integrate so many different layers of flavours in every dish. Sour, sweet, bitter, salty and umami all found their way onto the plate, creating this experience where the flavour of each dish evolved with every bite.
The food was simply amazing and I really recommend this place if you want to go for a nice night out when it can just have that little extra. They are open Tue. - Sat. from 7pm-10pm. Make your reservations in time!
Two hours before I finished this blog, I ordered the Fatoni Vegan pizza from Pizzeria Salute. This pizza was the best vegan pizza I had in my life! I wasn't even supposed to write about it, but I liked it so much I needed to add it here. It's literally bombed with vegetables and the flavour is incredible. Go check it out for yourself!