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!
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!
Okay story time! I tried to go to Green Gorilla several times actually. Green Gorilla posits themselves as a superfood place so I assumed they had at least some vegan food items. (Also because gorilla’s are mostly vegetarian!) They sells juices, smoothies, pastries, smart bars, vegan cookies, coffees and ‘bowls’. The latter are mostly pre-made and wrapped. So, the first time I wanted to visit, I was a bit late for lunch (13:30) and there was almost no food left in the shop. They are open the whole day, so that was a bit surprising. I noticed that they actually do not have so many vegan options; there is an açaí bowl and I believe a pre-made salad with veggies.
The next time I went they were closed since they were moving to another location! But it turned out there is a second nearby location in Globus, a large department store. To find the Green Gorilla there is not straight forward, it is part of a gym/wellness place on the 4th floor, and if you don’t know it is there you won’t find it.
The place itself is very beautiful, there is a great roof terrace and it is very lounge-y (probably because it is in a fancy wellness centre 🙂 )
So this time we were on time for lunch, but again most of the pre-made food was gone already. Fortunately, we could still try the açaí bowl, it was being made on the spot, it didn’t take long. I was with my favourite lunch partner, my husband (food blogging is easier with more people since you can try more things!) We both had a smoothie; the Green gorilla (banana, apple, avocado, mint, spinach, spirulina, ginger and dates) and the Blueberry love (blue berries, strawberries, vanilla, coconut, castor oil (?) and dates). The smoothies were seriously next level, they were delicious, huge, and decorated with fruit (great for pictures but made eating them a bit complex) I believe all smoothies are sweetened with dates, which I personally didn’t think was very necessary. We also tried two small vegan raw balls from ‘La smart truffe’ , while waiting for our açaí bowl.
The acai bowl was pretty but a bit disappointing at the same time. It is a basically a smoothie in a bowl with fruits on top. Size-wise it was much smaller than the smoothies we just had. It was tasty, and we did feel superhealthy afterwards, so there is that. I would go back for the smoothies for sure!
Granola is a health food cafe in Geneva, which uses a lot of local, ethically sourced and seasonal products. They offer breakfast and lunch items, such as soups and poké bowls. They have coffee, juices and cakes ( sometimes do have vegan cakes, but not when I visited unfortunately) Delivery is possible too, via smood.ch.
The place is pretty cute. Inside there are several tables and a bar, and outside is a nice terrace. Somehow it seemed to me like a place that would offer a lot of vegan items, because of the hipster-factor (avocado toast! poké bowls!) and focus on health, but that was a bit of a disappointment. Later I read on their site that they offer food that is “hearty and delicious—almost like vegetarian food for nonvegetarians ” and I have to say I have no clue what that is supposed to mean, since most of the food they offer is not vegetarian at all. They also mention their focus on environment and plant-based food, so, it is a bit of a conflicting message.
Anyway, on the food! I actually went there for the avocado toast (something that is not that common in Geneva!) but they were out of avocado. They also have an açai bowl, which is vegan, and a “chia tella”; a chia pudding with banana, coconut milk and Nutella, which can be made vegan if the Nutella is left out. I wanted to try the chia pudding, which was okay but not very special. I spotted later on the menu that they also have a Buddha bowl which seems vegan.
They do have several milk alternatives, and interesting hot drinks such as rose lattes, and liquid gold latte. And also matcha lattes and coffee. I had a latte with oat milk, which was pretty good. There were some nice looking cakes, but none were vegan. However, at the ordering station I noticed some “energy balls”, which are in fact vegan! I tried two, the espresso and the chocolate and they were good! Maybe more healthy than the cake 🙂
The service was good, it’s a nice place to sit with a coffee (and maybe a slice of vegan cake?) I would still like to try the avocado toast, because they are not so common in Geneva.
Stepping into the American Dream Diner in Geneva is like being transported to the USA in the 50ties. The chrome, the benches, the jukeboxes! Personally, it reminds me of the game Fallout. The American Dream Diner is inspired by old American Diners, and provides, as they call it, an escape from today’s complex world. While I don’t think life was more easy at that time, stepping into the Dream Diner is like stepping in a time capsule. But with vegan options! The interior is the real deal, imported from the US.
American Dream Diner can be found in Geneva, and soon they will open a second location in Geneva, and open in Nyon and Lausanne as well! There is also a small shop attached which sells American foodstuffs like Pop-tarts, non-food like magazines, but there is also a selection of for example Canadian items (also online: http://www.americanmarket.ch/)
The Diner serves ‘typical’ American food, like burgers, fries and hot dogs and they have vegan options for all the burgers! They can substitute both the patty and the cheese with a plant-based alternative. The patties are made in-house and are composed of among others wheat and soy. Also the hot dogs and Mexican Chili can be made vegan. Interestingly they also serve salads, and those are not vegan. (Though I am sure you can ask for them to be made vegan)
So yes, there was a lot to try! We started with the onion rings, served with a vegan sauce and two types of fries, the American and chili “cheese” fries. The fries are nice and thick, the portions reasonable. We tried both the BBQ burger and the classic cheese burger in vegan form. The burgers are pretty big, and taste good, a bit mushroom-y I would say.
To be honest, while the burgers tasted slightly different from each other (because different sauces were used) it was not really outspoken. I think this is because the vegan patties are the same and the difference between these two burgers is rather due to the type of cheese and the addition of bacon in the BBQ burger. Maybe the non-vegan counterparts also taste similar, I cannot really judge that 🙂
There are also special drinks served like floats and milkshakes. Unfortunately these are not vegan. There are also no vegan desserts.
The service was very good, the staff was very kind and helpful when it came to explaining the available vegan options. Also, they actually mentioned that they had no vegan desserts, which was quite thoughtful. Usually when I go somewhere, even if it is clear that I am vegan, I will be offered the dessert card even if there is nothing vegan on there. So extra points from me for this.
I really want to go back to the Diner ! The food was good, the atmosphere great, and I want to test out the vegan hot dogs as well!
It has been a while since we talked icecream here! Time for a quick post on a nice ice cream spot now that it is still summer. I randomly noticed Kalan Paletas when passing through Renens (Vaud) train station. Since we have had some pretty warm weather here, I decided to see if they actually had some vegan ice creams, and yes they do!
Kalan Paletas can be found at Renens train station, every Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. On Thursday they are in Lausanne at Riponne square, and I believe the ice cream can also be bought in several other places. I doubt they’ll be open year-round, but I am sure that they will be around for some more months.
So if you manage to find them, what do they have? Certified organic and fair trade ice cream! Kalan Paletas brings Mexican paletas to Switzerland. For every ice cream sold, they in turn donate part of the proceedings to NGOs which operate in Mexico.
Kalan Paletas offers both vegan and non-vegan options, and the flavours offered are quite special, for example strawberry-mint and hibiscus-raspberry. The ingredients are mostly sourced locally, in Switzerland. The ice cream or rather Paleta (link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paletero) are more like ice lollies than gelato.
You pick the flavour and there is the option of adding some toppings, like nuts and chocolate. I tried several of their flavours and they are very nice!