CAFÉ RESTAURANT DU GRÜTLI
Maison du Grütli
by Chené Koscielny
My first visit to the Café Restaurant du Grütli is purely by accident. My husband had booked movie tickets at nearby Cine17, but had gotten the date wrong and we find ourselves dressed up with nowhere to go on a Saturday night. That’s how we discover Café Restaurant du Grütli. The restaurant is inside the Maison des arts du Grütli – a multi-functional centre spanning film, art, theatre, music and dance in the cultural heart of the city near the Victoria Hall, the Conservatoire de Music, the library and the University of Geneva.
Where creatives meet over healthy, bio food in Geneva
The modern, arty restaurant is a place where creatives meet and on the night of our visit a group of dancers are analyzing their steps at the next table. The restaurant spans two floors connected with an impressive spiral staircase with interesting nature-inspired artworks on the walls. The restaurant hosts events, including Sundays from elsewhere with guest chefs from far flung places including, Tibet, Mauritius, South Africa and Ethiopia.
The menu is filled with creative surprises including excellent wines, a selection of inspiring dishes made from fresh, local products including gluten free vegan options such as a vegan burger and tofu red curry. The drinks menu includes a range of locally made juices and ‘sirops’ and a wine list of mainly organically produced wines. I’m also impressed to find a huge selection of fine teas including three variations of the South African Rooibos I grew up with and Ayurvedic teas aimed to compliment your dosha. Tonight though I’m in the mood for a glass of Prosecco and my husband opts for a beer.
We skip the entrees, but options include a coconut cream laced root vegetable soup; a ricotta, sundried tomato and olive flan; a tartare of salmon, lemon and ‘loup’ (European seabass) and spring onion or a leek, beetroot, pomegranate and rocket salad. For the main course I choose the Asiette Vénérée – an absolutely delicious and beautifully presented layered vegetarian dish comprising a beetroot hummus, with root vegetables (parsnip and butternut) on a bed of black venere rice from the Novara region in Piemonte, Italy and lentils. Easily the best vegetarian meal I’ve ever had.
My husband first goes for the burger –until the waiter points out it is vegan (made from red bio Azuki beans) accompanied with potato galettes and a combo of parsnip, butternut and chia grains. Instead, he chooses the more traditional orange-infused magret de canard with safran and pistachio rice and spicy red cabbage on the side, which is divine!
For dessert we share a generous pear and chocolate crumble with vanilla ice cream, a crunchy interesting mix and absolutely to die for. I also fancy the mousse de coco et cajou facon cheese cake, which I’m still trying to translate elegantly.
Main dishes are priced between 24chf-41chf, with salads priced between 18chf-24chf. Dessert prices range from 6chf-13.50chf.
This restaurant is ideal for a ladies lunch or night out or to impress guests to Geneva. It is also a good option if you’re looking for a restaurant that serves vegan or bio food in Geneva. The prices are reasonable, the service is quick and friendly, the clientele interesting and cultivated and the food is a real culinary adventure. I loved it!
16 rue Général Dufour, 1204 Genève. Telephone: 022 321 51 58
Opening hours Monday to Thursday 8am-midnight, Friday 8am-1am, Saturday 4pm-1am, Sunday 4pm-11pm