OGGI – Take-away meals, catering and cookery classes
by Vivian Holding
My interview with Luca Kuettel and Patrick Bante, the founders of OGGI (pronounced ‘odd-gee’ and meaning ‘today’ in Italian) could not have got off to a better start. First, there was an offer of a cup of tea (“we know how much the English love their tea”) quickly followed by an offer of lunch too – marvellous! I chose the ‘dish of the week’ from a selection of their ready prepared meals, so while Luca warmed up my Red Chicken Curry with Basil and Wild Rice, I spoke with his partner Patrick about their relationship with Seedspace, an enterprise that offers both co-working and co-living facilities within the same building (click here for more information).
How the business started
We ate whilst chatting about their multi-faceted business which includes a ready meal delivery service – OGGI Shop (freshly prepared meals, using healthy and tasty seasonal ingredients delivered to your office or home, OGGI Catering (they offer canapes and small, taster-style meals with a Mediterranean or exotic theme – the French would describe this as an apéro-dinatoire), their OGGI Academy (offering cookery lessons to individuals, groups or as a team-building event) as well as the rental of their space for culinary events – the OGGI Kitchen.
Our conversation quickly revealed the cheeky side of their personalities. When I asked, innocently, how they met, they replied – without missing a beat: “On Tinder!” I tried my best to keep a straight face!
These two obviously have a fantastic working relationship, always a good thing when a business is young and in the process of growing. They are fun, easy- going and very personable. I couldn’t wait to find out more…
Lunch Delivery Service
Meals range from CHF15 (for the dish of the week) to CHF18.50 for the Ragout of Beef served with a Rosemary & Hazelnut Polenta and Peas. The dish of the week I tried, Red Chicken Curry, was very tasty: soft pieces of Swiss-sourced chicken cooked with coconut milk, fresh chilli, ginger and garlic, lemongrass, onion, carrots, tomato, basil, rapeseed oil and seasoning.
Meals are served in German-made WECK conserve jars (click here for detailed product info). These jars can be warmed up in the microwave or alternatively in a pan of boiling water. The benefit of using them? Apart from aesthetics, they offer a zero waste packaging option. You pay a simple CHF3 deposit for your jars, refundable on return with your next order. They are then washed, sterilised and re-used – nifty idea, don’t you think?
Three seasonal dishes plus the dish of the week are available to order, along with two desserts – currently a creamy fromage frais on a speculoos biscuit base with cherry coulis or a dark chocolate fondant cake. A vegan option is always available. Meals are prepared and cooked on Mondays and deliveries are available Tuesday-Friday in the central Geneva area (Tuesdays only for the greater Geneva area). The meals are treated with a pasteurisation process that allows them to be stored in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Unlike conventional ready meals, this process means there is no need for additives or preservatives and the dish loses none of its flavour or nutritional value.
They suggested I try out the service by ordering a selection to be delivered to my husband’s work place. A wonderful idea and certainly something he’d appreciate given his office location is in a lunchtime culinary graveyard (La Pallanterie if you must know). “How about we turn up and surprise him with a delivery from you?” Perfect, yes – he’ll love it! (An update on what he thought of them to come very soon.) To see what’s on the menu this week and how to place your order click here.
OGGI recently catered for a friend’s event (which is how I found out about them in the first place). She was seriously impressed by the quality and freshness of the food they prepared – Mediterranean style bruschettas, canapés, tapas style dishes served in jars, and desserts.
They pride themselves not only on great flavour combinations with their food, but can offer wine pairings too if you’d like.
If, like my friend, you are interested in OGGI organising the catering for your next event or party, you’ll find their whatever, whenever, wherever attitude a real breath of fresh air service-wise, one that is not often seen in Geneva.
Further details of what they offer can be seen on their website (click here).
Classes take place at the CREA (Cooking & Relax Espace Art) showroom on route de Saint Julien in Carouge), an art gallery with kitchen showroom housed in a contemporary loft style space – the perfect location for them to share their love of food with you in a fun and inspiring way. What you’ll experience will be free from traditional methods of cookery lessons – you know, the ones that give strict instructions on how to follow recipes. With Oggi, you simply choose from three different styles of classes: team-building, afterwork (dishes are partially prepared in advance by the chef with an added option of an oenology/wine tasting course) or show cooking (a spectacular cookery demonstration by the chef – again with the additional option of a wine tasting course).
Private group lessons of 10-40 people can be arranged or individuals in smaller groups can be accommodated in their group individual classes. The next group individual class will be a Thai Cookery Class taking place on Thursday 8th June 2017. Email or telephone to reserve your place. Click here for further information.
“How about I send a group of husbands along for you to transform them into culinary Gods?” I ask. “Great idea, we can see that catching on!”.
Where do they like to eat?
I’m always intrigued to know where chefs like to eat. Luca says he dislikes the smell of fried food in the house so always chooses chips when dining out. The Café du Port in Rolle does amazing filets de perche, his favourite. Patrick is a little more conventional in his choice and opts for Les Curiades in Lully – he says it’s all down to their use of ingredients and the freshness and simplicity of their dishes.
What’s next for this duo?
Plans to open a restaurant in the offices of Seedspace near to La Praille on route des Jeunes are well on the way. What else? To continue to grow the company as organically as possible and to continue offering fantastic quality and service to customers at a fair price. Oh and yes, to keep up their cheeky banter – I loved it (she says blushing)!
For further information:
Click here for website.
Contact: Patrick Bante or Luca Kuettel at email@example.com.