Georg Franz Kolschitzky, often referred to as Georg Kolschitzky, was a notable figure in the history of Vienna, Austria. He is primarily known for his role in introducing coffee to the city and for his contributions during the Ottoman siege of Vienna in 1683.
Kolschitzky was born in the late 17th century in the Kingdom of Hungary, which was part of the Habsburg Monarchy. He was of Slavic descent, and his family had ties to the Croatian community. Kolschitzky became fluent in several languages, including Croatian, Hungarian, Turkish, and Polish.
During the Ottoman siege of Vienna in 1683, Kolschitzky worked as a spy for the Polish forces led by King Jan III Sobieski. After the successful liberation of Vienna, Kolschitzky was rewarded by the city with the abandoned supplies left behind by the retreating Ottoman army, which included sacks of coffee beans.
Kolschitzky is widely credited with establishing the first coffeehouse in Vienna. He opened a coffeehouse using the beans he had acquired, introducing the beverage to the city’s residents. The coffeehouse, known as the Blue Bottle (Zur Blauen Flasche), became a popular gathering place for intellectuals, artists, and the Viennese elite.
Kolschitzky’s coffeehouse quickly gained popularity, and he became known as the “first Viennese coffeehouse owner.” His coffeehouse played a significant role in popularizing the consumption of coffee in Vienna, contributing to the city’s coffeehouse culture, which has endured to this day.
Georg Kolschitzky’s contributions to Vienna’s coffee culture are celebrated and recognized in the city’s history. His entrepreneurial spirit and introduction of coffee have left a lasting legacy in Vienna, where coffeehouses continue to be an integral part of the city’s social and cultural fabric.