AFFORDABLE MEALS FOR YOUR LUNCH BREAK
by Gaëlle Forget
The rentrée has come and gone and everyone is back at work. Looking for new and interesting places to grab lunch to break up your work routine? Here’s our list of affordable and healthy lunches to enjoy on the go or at your desk – if you must.
Tigellino recently opened in the Champel area and it is a great option if you’re on a budget and looking for a good, filling and affordable lunch.
A Tigelle is a thin, round bread from the Modena area of Emilia-Romagna in Northern Italy. It is made of flour, water, salt and yeast. At Tigellino, you can create your own tigelle or just select one from the menu. They are all made in front of you with quality products, handpicked by the owner, from the Emilia-Romagna region. They have a great lunch combo: either 4 tigelle and 1 drink for CHF12 or a salad and 2 tigelle for CHF12. These little hot sandwiches are very filling, so I recommend the second option. I tried the Pianoro with coppa, pecorino romano and fig jam and the Slt. Lazzaro with formaggio d’Italia, rucola and sweet onion jam and both were utterly delicious.
The owner is passionate about the products and is warm and friendly. He took time to explain the concept of the store and I really enjoyed chatting to him. He also offers catering services for companies. I recommend ordering your lunch to go and enjoying the milder days in one of Geneva’s beautiful parks.
Route de Chêne 5
Monday to Saturday from 11:30 am to 2:30pm and from 7pm until 9pm. It is closed on Saturday and Sunday.
My high-school friend decided to join forces with another friend to open a healthy lunch spot in the Eaux-Vives area. When they opened in April 2018, it was the only exclusively poké bowl restaurant in town. Elua means “two” in Hawaïan to symbolise their friendship and partnership. The idea is that you can create your own poké bowl by choosing your choice of raw fish or you can also opt for a vegetarian tofu option. Next you choose your sauce and toppings such as mango, edamame, avocado, kumquat. You can also select one of their recommended poké bowls. My favorite is the Kailua bowl, which comes with albacore tuna, brown rice, edamame, mango, ginger, black radish and teriyaki sauce for CHF22. Their philosophy is to serve only the freshest and highest quality ingredients along with the most sustainable raw fish they can find.
Rue des Eaux-Vives 8
Monday to Friday 11 :30 am to 2 :30 pm
A couple of blocks from Elua, you’ll find another healthy lunch restaurant:La Esquina. This is also a great healthy lunch option. They have a very attractive selection of sweet bowls for breakfast and savoury bowls for lunch. I tried both the Aloha bowl at CHF19.5 and the Zen bowl (CHF16) and they were both very filling and delicious. The Aloha bowl consists of perfumed rice, tuna, avocado, mango, sesame and fried oignon whereas the Zen bowl has rice, marinated salmon, edamame, cucumber and grapefruit slices. You can add the final touch to your bowl by choosing your own sauce and seed toppings. They also offer smoothies for CHF8. I tasted the Hawaïen smoothie, with orange, guava, banana, passion fruit and almond milk, which was very refreshing. I am also a big fan of their sweet potato cake, which is very tasty. It is the perfect end to a yummy and healthy lunch.
Rue de la Mairie 6
From Monday until Friday from 7:30 am until 4pm
THREE KIDS BAGELS
Three Kids is a small gourmet bagel restaurant in the old town. It only has three bar stools available so take your bagel to go and enjoy it on a bench as you watch the world go by. Three Kids make their own bagel dough on site every day with organic white flour from Choulex, a nearby village. I have to admit, it is the best bagel I have ever had. The bagels are very fresh, tasty and affordable. They have four types of bagels named after the different neighborhoods of Geneva. You can choose between 5 types of bread: nature, sesame, poppy seed, garlic and parmesan cheese. I really like the vegetarian bagel, which is composed of eggplant, goat’s cheese with nuts, sun-dried tomatoes, cream cheese, honey mustard and salad for CHF10. The Plain Palais bagel is also delicious with its chicken sauce tartare, melted gruyère cheese and cream cheese for CHF10.50. On Saturdays, they have organic eggs and bagels for brunch. Three Kids is a MUST DO while visiting the old town, I promise you won’t be disappointed by their gourmet bagels.
Rue du Vieux-Collège 10 bis
Monday to Saturday from 11 :30 am until 4 :30 pm.
El Salad, one of my old favourites, has two locations: one in the Terrassière district and one near Manor. El Salad offers a wide range of high-quality gourmet salads that are both creative and well-balanced. You can also choose to have one of their salad in a tasty wrap. They offer a homemade soup of the day and homemade desserts with gluten-free options. The greatest thing about El Salad is that you can order your lunch online before 11am and you will get it delivered to your office by bike for an eco-friendly lunch. They focus on using local and seasonal ingredients. My personal favorite is the Cali Wild Rice salad, which consists of rice, grilled chicken, mango, avocado and jalopeños for CHF17. It is the same price if you opt for the wrap.
Rue des Etuves 9 or Carrefour de Villereuse 4
Monday to Sunday from 11 : 30 am until 7pm in Villereuse, but only open during the week and for lunch in Rue des Etuves.