So for my real-life job I occasionally visit cities around Switzerland. I have been in Bern to meet with colleagues quite regularly, and of course we also need to eat while we are there ! Most of the time we go to the same place (Tibits ❤) but occasionally we branch out. One of my dear co-workers suggested going to Wurst & Moritz and I thought they were joking…a sausage place?? Turns out there totally are vegan sausages at Wurst & Moritz! Me and my vegetarian co-worker were happy to try those.
The concept of Wurst & Moritz is simple; they serve sausages (Currywurst), sides (fries, salad, etc) and sauce. And drinks, of course. The place itself can be found in a small food court next to Bern main station. There is a small area where you can sit, and it is very casually decorated with darts and a fuss ball table.
The vegan sausage is served with classic sauce, the other sauces are not guaranteed to be vegan. The fries are very nice, crispy and properly salted. It is a great option if you just want to have some hearty, junky food.
Wurst&Moritz do not serve vegan desserts, but in the same food court you can find a cafe, Coffee Fellows, which serves coffee (with milk alternatives!) and vegan apple pie!
Cinnamon Snail started as the first vegan organic food truck in the US, in 2010, and has since then become well known. They have now two locations in NYC in addition to the food truck (in Fidi and in the Pennsy food hall). I initially searched for the food truck, but couldn’t find it. So I went to the nearby Pennsy food hall instead. I actually visited Cinnamon Snail a few times during my stay in NYC, to try several different foods. Choosing is hard with such great options!
Of course the Cinnamon Snail is mostly known for their sweets: cinnamon rolls and doughnuts. But they also have very nice savoury foods like sandwiches and burgers. You can order take-out and delivery from the food truck and the Fidi location, I believe all locations have slightly different foods.
There are is space to sit in the Pennsy food hall, though it gets very busy. For my first visit of Cinnamon Snail I wanted to try some pastries! I had a cinnamon roll (of course), a peanut butter cookie party and a raspberry danish. All sweets are quite big and sugary, as expected!
I later went back to try some of the savoury foods; a Memphis BBQ Deluxe burger (lentil burger on a pretzel bun, of which I have no picture), chilli cheese tater tots and a creole grilled tofu sandwich.
Unfortunately it is quite difficult to make a nice pictures since the food is more prepared for take-out. Of course we mostly care about the taste, and it that department there are no complaints! The place itself is also pretty busy, so I guess other people agree with me 😀
Avocado is a vegetarian restaurant in Athens that has been around for several years. The founders actually started with having a yoga studio, and the food served at Avocado has a focus on health as well. A lot of the food is labelled organic, and they serve some specific macrobiotic dishes. Avocado uses local, organic and seasonal products for as far as possible. Apart from the macrobiotic food, they serve pastas, pizza, soup, noodles, wraps, burgers and more. For drinks there are smoothies, juices, wines, tea, coffee etc.
There is some confusion on the internet whether or not Avocado is vegan or vegetarian. It is vegetarian, but they serve several vegan dishes and items that can be served vegan. On the menu card it is listed which items are vegan, gluten-free or wheat-free. I did notice some discrepancies between the online menu and the menu card in Avocado itself, so maybe there had been a recent update of dishes. For example, we tried the falafel plate which was listed as ‘can be made vegan’ in the restaurant, and as ‘vegan’ online.
I tried a coconut milk shake, made with coconut and almond milk. This smoothie was specifically mentioned as vegan. Some of the other drinks can be made vegan upon request (at a surcharge). I really enjoyed it, the taste was just purely coconut, which I happen to enjoy.
For starters we tried the ‘Mother Earth’, a spinach tart, and the falafel plate (made vegan). The spinach tart is based on traditional Greek food. The spinach part and the dough were tasty, though the dough, which is made with oat, amaranth and flax seed, was quite hard and a bit chewy. The tart itself was topped with almond and some were burned. Unfortunately, the tart was clearly re-heated in the microwave since some parts were cold and others were very hot.
We were warned that the falafel plate was big, and that was no lie! We were told we could bag up what we couldn’t finish, but as we spend the whole day walking around, a doggy bag was not needed. The falafel plate in its vegan form is served with guacamole which I found a bit strange. It is served with nice thick pita and tabbouleh with capers. The falafel themselves were very good!
What was a bit surprising was that we got the starters one at the time. The mains we got both at the same time. We tried a Black Bean Caponata wrap and a Koula panini. Both are served with guacamole and nachos. (I read later on the menu for the Koula panini we could’ve chosen sweet potato flakes. Well, next time :)) The Black Bean wrap is Mexican-inspired, with grains, black beans, avocado and veggies. The Koula panini has a potato-mushroom patty, tomatoes and home-made Ceasar dressing.
There are two vegan desserts, and we tried the ‘hug a tree’: a slice of apple pie topped with hazelnuts and almonds. Interestingly with a similar crust as the spinach pie. Very nice, but again reheated in such a way that parts of it were cold. We had the dessert with a nice coffee. Avocado offers soy and almond milk, but again for a small surcharge (it is organic though).
The atmosphere at Avocado is quite relaxed, with music from the 50s-60s. Interestingly there were quite a lot of older people for lunch. The food is a bit more expensive than the norm in Athens, but overall the quality is good (except for where they failed to properly heat the food). I also liked the portion sizes; many “health”-oriented places serve smaller amounts of food in my experience.
The service was also good, which I found common in Athens. The servers came by several times to ask if we liked the food. Which is nice, except sometimes I just had one bite so I couldn’t really judge yet 😀 The food also came out quite fast. Minor nitpick was that the service was a bit too fast with taking the plates, which gave a bit of a rushed feeling. But overall eating at Avocado was a positive experience!
Vegan crêpes? Yes please! Before going to New York I had read about the Little Choc Apothecary and I knew I had to visit. It had been a while since I had a crêpe since the standard version is unfortunately not vegan.
Crêpes are quite different from pancakes, in that they are much thinner and larger. They tend to be made on a large round stove, where the batter is spread using a small T-shaped wooden stick, whereas pancakes are made in … pans (what’s in a name…). Savoury crêpes are sometimes made from buckwheat flour, and are then often folded in a square shape. Sweet crêpes on the other hand tend to be made of wheat flour and are usually folded in a triangle. It is all in the details!
Little Choc Apothecary serves both savoury and sweet crêpes. They also serve açaí bowls and sweets like cookies and scones. For drinks they sell juices, smoothies, coffee and tea, beer and wine. The teas are special home-made blends (this is the apothecary part!) and you can also buy your favourite tea blend to take home. Apart from being vegan, all the food is also gluten-free, with a focus on local, organic and fair-trade ingredients where possible.
The interior of Little Choc Apothecary is very cute, and the visitors are mostly younger people. It was quite busy when we visited. There is some space downstairs, where the crêpes are made and a larger room upstairs.
We started by ordering drinks and some savoury crêpes. For drinks I wanted to try the Blue Haze smoothie (blueberry, banana, almond milk and home-made ‘nutella’) and my husband took an Orange Tan (carrot, orange, apple, pineapple, ginger).
With the drinks we ordered our savoury crêpes. The savoury crêpes have pre-defined fillings and you can get some additional toppings for a small surcharge like cashew cheese, scrambled tofu, etc. We decided to try the ‘Room for Mushroom’ (roasted mushrooms, spinach, walnuts and tahin-basil sauce) with extra coconut bacon and a ‘Garden of Eatin’ (apple, avocado, fresh kale, mint-basil pesto and lemon juice).
We got the Orange Tan juice quite quickly, but we had to wait quite a while for the crêpes. The crêpes were a bit thicker than usual crêpes and they were folded triangularly (heresy!). The Mushroom crêpe was a bit more creamy, and of course mushroom and spinach is just a great combination. The ‘Garden of Eatin’ was very nice, I really like the sweetness the apple brought and the pesto was very tasty as well.
At that point we still didn’t get the other drink. Because it was so busy I felt bad asking about it too soon, but as I still didn’t have my drink once the food arrived, I decided it was time. As expected, the drink was forgotten. The server apologised and the drink was removed from the bill, so that was nice. And the drink was very tasty, albeit very cold.
Of course we also had to try the sweet crêpes! Unlike for the savoury version you pick what you want on it, with the first 2 toppings included and all additional for additional cost. Toppings include fruits, jams, nuts, ice cream, etc. There was a special that day: a banana split crêpe, with banana, chocolate, ice cream and cake pieces. We tried the special and a crêpe with banana, home-made nutella and clotted cream. The special was nice, though the cake pieces were not so interesting. The ice cream was very good though. For the custom-picked crêpe the combination is quite classic 🙂 (except for the clotted cream). The clotted cream did give a nice salty taste against the sweetness of the crêpe.
After that we had no more stomach space to try any of the other sweets! I do have to say the food was a bit more pricey, but on the other hand: vegan crêpes, nice atmosphere and great food.
Sometimes I hear people say that it is hard to be vegetarian or vegan in Switzerland. These people are very wrong. I hope I presented enough arguments already for my statement on this blog, and today I will present my strongest argument yet.
Today, let’s talk about Tibits.
This chain of vegetarian restaurants was developed in collaboration with Hiltl, the oldest vegetarian restaurant in the World (since 1898!) which is located in Zurich. I have visited Hiltl as well, and to be honest I kind of prefer Tibits, it is a bit more relaxed, casual and less overwhelming in choice 🙂
Tibits has locations in several cities in the German part of Switzerland (location in Lausanne to open December this year!) and there are 2 Tibits in London. The name is derived from the English ‘Tid Bits’, and the concept is that of ‘Vegetarian Fast-food Restaurants’. Don’t be fooled though, this is no snackbar* quality, this is good food; freshly made, with seasonal ingredients (many pumpkin dishes in the autumn!) and local where possible. The ‘fast’-part is however true! You serve yourself from the buffet, and pay by weight. Tibits also does catering and take-away. They have published cookbooks, and they also sell special kitchen knives, bags and other merch.
I have visited Tibits in Bern several times, since I occasionally have to go to Bern for the day job. My non-vegan colleagues also enjoy the food at Tibits, by the way, it is certainly not just for the veggies amongst us. In general the restaurant is always very busy, with all sorts of different people, from young to old, families, groups of friends, etc. The atmosphere is relaxed, with jazzy music in the background.
Actually, I have been wanting to make this post since forever, but when at my day job I felt a bit awkward writing a review and making many photos (the secret double life of a food blogger :)). So I visited Tibits on the weekend, on Sunday to be precise. (Most, if not all, Tibits locations are open all day every day) On Sunday there is a brunch menu until 14:30. The other days there is breakfast until 10.
Brunch means there was a combination of breakfast foods (vegan croissants!!), and more lunch-type items available. Everything is vegetarian, lots is vegan and all dishes are labelled with common allergens. And yes there are desserts!
So as mentioned Tibits is a buffet-style restaurant, there is no table service. You go to the buffet, load up your plate, go to the bar and pay based on the weight. Since I cannot start with describing everything on the buffet, I just made a bunch of pictures and hopefully they’ll speak for themselves.
Everything I had at Tibits was tasty and there is a large variety of different foods, ranging from vegan shakshuka, to falafel, to baked potatoes, to bread salad, vegan sausages, Indian-inspired dishes such as samosas, Mexican-inspired food like chilli… There are often also surprising dishes, and vegan/vegetarian variations on traditional Swiss food(which tends to be heavy on the meat & cheese).
Tibits offers a variety of cold drinks, such as lemonades and juices, but you can also get some tap water for free. For hot drinks there are coffees (and yes, you can get soy milk!), teas, and even vegan hot chocolate! At the bar there are also some additional pastries, such as the beautiful vegan lemon drizzle pie, and snack boxes later during the day. Last time I also spotted several ice creams.
I cannot recommend Tibits enough, it combines delicious food with a nice casual atmosphere, lots of (clearly labelled!) vegan options and always something new to try.
Type of place: vegetarian/vegan buffet
Completely vegan: no
Vegan desserts: yes!
Website (German) : https://www.tibits.ch/de/
A short post, but I think this place needs more recognition! Planty is a new small company bringing delicious plant-based pastries! They do catering, and have a food stall “Que de Bonheur”, which can be found at PlainPalais market in Geneva, on Tuesday and Friday (from 8:30 to 14:00). Planty is zero-waste, so you can bring your own container!
At their food stall I tried a piece of quiche and a seitan wrap, the latter being assembled at the spot! Can recommend! Of course I also tried a piece of lemon pie and some chocolate chip cookies. And yes, they are tasty as they look!
Occasionally the food stall is present at festivals, which are announced on their Facebook. They will be at Geneva’s vegan festival which is the 20 and 21 October, http://urbanvge.ch/festival-vegan-2018/ ! I went to the festival last year, and it was a HUGE success. It was so busy that it was almost impossible to enter the room in which it was held 😀 This year the festival will be 2 days, and I will definitively pop by!
New York City has several great vegan places ! I already mentioned the 100% vegan bakery By Chloe on this blog, today, let’s talk about a very different 100% vegan place : VLife! I was walking around New York when I saw a sign promoting 100% vegan food. Well that is too good an opportunity to pass up! I visited VLife several times during my stay in the city, but I only made pictures of one meal… Mostly because take-out doesn’t photograph so nicely 😀
So as mentioned VLife is 100% vegan, they serve burgers, wraps, rice bowls, vegan quasadillas, salads, juices, bubble teas and more! It is possible to customize the wraps, burgers, smoothies etc. And of course they have desserts! Apart from being vegan, they are Kosher-certified and do not use GMO soy nor MSG. All items on the menu that are also Soy-free or Gluten-free are marked. Additionally Vlife does both take-out and delivery.
The first time I visited I tried a bubble tea and a vegan quasadilla, which was made with avocado and tapioca ‘cheese’ (VLife uses a lot of ‘cheese’ made of tapioca) It was delicious!
The second time there were some spaces to sit so I could actually made some pictures. We ordered an Easy V-cheesy wrap, Cajun fries, crispy mushrooms and a BLT Bliss burger. We could choose our own sauces, there is quite some choice! We tried the Mustard Aioli and the Avocado Mayo, both are nice! For drinks we had a ginger black ice tea and home-made lemonade.
The mushrooms are nice and spicy. I liked the cajun fries, they were nicely seasoned and crispy. Also slightly spicy as expected. The burger was good, but not very special. I did really like the wrap, it had quite some salad, a tasty ‘cheesy’ sauce, and the soy protein had an interesting texture.
It is unfortunate the place is so tiny, but the food they serve is very nice … I went back there several times even though NYC is full of choices for vegan food!