A friendly welcome upon entering the establishment always makes a difference. We take a seat at one of the front cooking areas right by the Teppan grill. The restaurant is fairly quiet on a Wednesday evening. Located in the heart of Zurich’s financial district, this place seems to be one that attracts crowds for lunch and directly after work. Looking around, the whisk-shaped lamps and minimalistic furniture creates a modern and urban atmosphere – at the same time preserving the Asian atmosphere. The gigantic Kuala Lumpur MRT (public transport) map quickly catches my attention. In the background a movie about the city is playing on repeat. Memories of my time in Kuala Lumpur…With a fairly wide selection of Asian brews, I opt for the Tiger Beer (3 dl CHF 7.00) while my friend orders a Weizen (3 dl CHF 7.00). There is a misunderstanding with the drinks order, which however was handled very well by the front-of-house staff. The correct drinks were served following a friendly apology. That’s how to do it! Skimming through the dinner menu the choice is an obvious one. All-you-can-eat Teppanyaki (CHF 49.90 per person) it is! We start with a hearty Miso Soup, which is included in the all-you-can-eat arrangement. The first set of grilled dishes is a mix of different specialties offered. These include chicken, beef, pork, prawns and salmon. Allowing flexibility, patrons can select and omit from the platters as desired. Steamed rice and egg-fried-rice is served as a side dish. The smell of what’s on the grill slowly diffuses in the room around us. The dishes arrive – a feast for all senses. A variety of sauces – including some spicy ones – as well as ginger and fried garlic are available to indulge in. If you overdo it with the chilli, it’s good to know that tap water is available free of charge. While the chicken has been grilled well, I added more seasoning to them. My personal favourite has to be the beef and salmon, whose taste suggests good quality cuts. The tofu on the grill is also a combination that works very well.The total bill amounts to CHF 113.80 and so we leave the KL Teppanyaki satisfied and very full indeed. The friendly downtown casual Asian grill restaurant that blends Japan’s Teppanyaki dishes with KL style grill culture is not only a place for a quick lunch.
Our good friends at Kids Design & Snuggles Shoes are hosting a fantastic Family Day in Thalwil on Saturday 29th November. For Clarks kids shoes, Lelli Kelly, Tip Toey Joey and Startrite kids shoes, Zurich Expats know the place to go is the Snuggles concession at Kids Design for the latest range. The Kids Design store features beautiful children’s furniture & interior accessories, as well as latest fashions and designer children’s clothing, everything from Babies through Toddlers to Juniors. This Saturday (29th November) browse the Christmas & Winter range and enjoy a 30% discount on goods throughout the Kids Design store including the Snuggles range of children’s shoes. Activities for the children include; arts & craft table, Photo Booth with on-site hair stylists, visit from Santa in the afternoon and many more surprises. Special guests include Micro scooters, Kids Delights, Personal Trainer Cindy, QuickieBox Fotobox with on site kids hairstylists, plus, Celebrity Bachelor Rafael Beutl will be handing out red roses to you all. Pop along for a great 30% discount on your Christmas shopping and enjoy a pre Christmas Apero with Celebrity Bachelor Rafael Beutl. KidsDesign AlteLandstrasse 156, Thalwil 8800
I moved to Switzerland four years ago from the US, where I worked as a corporate attorney. After a bit of time here I realized that my passion for wine, food, travelling, and discovering European regions and the culture was stronger than my desire to work as a lawyer, so I left my job and decided to pursue a career in wine. And then there was Switzerland, home to idyllic sweeping pastures with cows grazing and overlooking a backdrop of gorgeous mountains. Switzerland is home to about 450 types of cheese and produces over 1.1 million hectolitres of wine per year. There are over 40 indigenous grape varietals in Switzerland, many of them found only in this small, mountainous country and undiscovered elsewhere…the perfect place to achieve what I was looking for. One of the great classic pairings is cheese and wine. This is also one of the easiest ways to make a great wine and/or a great cheese really stink…so lets delve into the world of Swiss wine and Swiss cheese! There are many types of cheese, but I will concentrate on these 4 main types of cheese: Fresh – soft cheeses such as goat milk chevre, Neufchatel, mozzarella Bloom – Soft, creamy cheese with an edible white outer layer (aka the bloom) Hard – Pretty self explanatory – a hard cheese, with a low moisture content and a tang of salt Blue – pungent, generally soft cheese with a blue tinge The best cheese plate will have a variety of cheeses, so pick your favorites!
Soft Swiss Cheese :
Tomme vaudoise – from the canton of Vaud and Geneva, this is a lovely mild, soft cheese. Its not aged, and very creamy. Try this with one of Switzerland’s most noble varietals – Chasselas (called Fendant in the Valais) – its freshness and tang will pair great with the wine! One of my favorites is the Chasselas from Ecole de Changins. This wine is mineral and fresh and will compliment a lot of creamy cheeses. Chasselas is native to Switzerland and produced full bodied, fruity, dry white wine.
Creamy Swiss Cheese:
Vacherin Mont d’OrThis thick, creamy cheese from the Franco Swiss border should never be served too cool. It has the perfect melt in your mouth texture that is wonderful after a meal or served on toasty bread. A wonderful compliment to this cheese would be a Pinot Gris from Geneva from Domaine du Chambet, a Riesling, or the Solaris varietal grown near Zurich. Solaris is a varietal that grows well in the canton of Zurich. It is beautifully perfumed with floral and tropical fruit aromas.
Semi-hard Swiss Cheese:
Appenzeller – hailing from the north, this robust, slightly spicy, herbal cheese would go perfectly with a light, fruity pinot noir from Grisons. A closely guarded herbal brine is applied to the cheese during the aging process. the herbacity of the cheese will match the slightly herbaceous quality of Pinot Noir. Switzerland, Pinot Noir grows especially well in the canton of Graubünden (aka Grissons) and near Geneva.
Semi-hard Swiss Cheese:
Tete de Moine – this semi hard cheese from thr Jura region looks gorgeous on a cheese plate. Cut not with a knife, but rather shaved into delicate curls with a special tool called a Girolle, it is as pretty as it is delicious. Full, aromatic, with a slight herbal hint, this goes great with a citrusy, grassy Sauvignon Blanc or Muller Thurgau.
Hard Swiss Cheese:
Gruyere – this cheese has been produced since 1115! This unpasteurized cow’s cheese is one of the ‘must haves’ for any wine and cheese soiree. It is fantastic while young and deliciously salty when aged. An authentic Swiss fondue would be nothing without Gruyere! While Chasselas is the obvious choice for fondue, young gruyere (aka doux) pairs well with a slightly buttery and fruity Chardonnay or a juicy, bursting with berry flavor Gamay. Try an aged Gruyere with A slightly sweet Petite Arvine for a great salty and sweet combo. For something truly out of this world, try an aged Heida (also known as Savagnin) or the rare Completer varietal with an 18 month Gruyere. Gamay, from the Beaujolais region of France, has gained a great following in French Switzerland.
Extra hard Swiss Cheese:
Sbrinz – extra hard, and extra salty, and slightly sour, this is a cheese that has an amazing texture and taste. Made in central Switzerland, this intense cheese will stand up to (and sometimes overpower) red wine. Try this with a Humagne rouge, a Gamaret or Cabernet Franc. Humagne Rouge is also known as Cornalin d’Aoste.. Gamaret is a varietal created in the 1970s to suit the terroir of French Switzerland – which makes it almost impossible to find outside of Switzerland! Humagne Rouge (aka Cornalin d’Aoste) is an indigenous grape varietal of Switzerland. It is now mainly planted in the Valais region. researching for this article I found a book that I should definitely purchase: Cheese, slices of Swiss Culture by Sue Styles. It picks out around 30 Swiss cheses that one must try, including some blue cheese like Bleuchatel. Try the few blue Swiss cheeses you can find with some Amigne. This varietal makes rich, full bodied wines (which one) that can be dry or sweet. I love a sweet wine with a blue cheese!Amigne, another native Swiss varietal, makes a range of wines from dry to sweet. You can tell how sweet an Amigne wine is by how many bees are on the label. This was a first in Switzerland – a wine law that required winemakers to disclose the sugar content of their wines. 1 bee is dry to off dry (aka a hint of sweetness) and 3 bees is very sweet.
Interview from “La Käserie”, a french cheese boutique in Berlin.
|Hello La Käserie, which cheese made you feel like “I want to do this for a living”?A natural unpasteurized goat milk cheese: The “Rovethym”. Romain had the occasion to visit the producer few months before we opened the shop. This cheese is particular because it is only produced from one kind of goat milk, from the race called “Rove”. These animals do not produce a lot of milk and are fed outdoor all year long.Which cheese and wine pairing was a real catch for you?For us we love a sweet white wine (like Sauternes, Coteaux du Layon, Jurancon, Chateau Yquem 1991;) ) with a veined cheese like Roquefort or Bleu des Causses.Which advice would you have for a newby to discover the wolrd of cheese and jump into wine and cheese pairing?We would advise him to start with soft cheeses (Like Saint-Nectaire, Tome des Bauges, Saint-Marcellin, Ossau-Iraty, and fresh goat cheese), then go for more stylished chesses (cooked ripened cheeses, veined cheeses, or with a washed crust) and pair them with local wines. Chestnuts and nuts are often a great match with cheese, the same for other fruits like pears and blue cheese, or apples and Camembert. If we could describe your adventure in Berlin with one cheese and one wine, which ones would you pick?A Comté and a Côte du Rhône (Saint Joseph, Crozes Hermitage).. Because you need patience, perseverance and hard-work to get the best results.|
Interview from Sébastien Fabbi, director of Swiss Wine Promotion, a society promoting Swiss wines abroad, shared his experiences and preferences.
Would you recommend white or red wine to pair with cheese in general? I recommend dry white wine. Our national Chasselas “loves” cheese in general but also hard cheeses. I love matching our cheese with Chasselas, Johannisberg, Arvine white wine and of course with the older vintages Chasselas or Hermitage, which goes amazing with cheese. From the red wines, I would recommend a light red wine style like Pinot Noir, Gamay, Plant Robert or even Gamaret. What is your best Swiss cheese and wine memory? An old cheese with an old Chasselas is for me like heaven on earth. The advantage with the old Chasselas is that it can come from any region and not only from the best known or famous region such as Dézaley. Tip: MEDINETTE 2002 by Louis-Philippe Bovard and an old cheese ripened by Mr Dutweiler …Your match with a cheese fondue?With the cheese fondue I mainly recommend Chasselas / Fendant (from the Valais region). These whites are the best marrIage. But,if you are not as infatuated by Chasselas as I am, I would then recommend a Johanisber or possibly a Sylvaner Riesling that is not too aromatic and is dry and strong. Are you organizing joint events with Switzerland Cheese Marketing to let people experience different wine and cheese options? We are preparing joint projects, but the most important is of course the upcoming World Expo in Milan next year.
At Zurich Expats, we love ideas and services that save time. We were recently contacted by Marko and Isabella Vidmar who run such a service and it is called Vidis Kochtüte. The idea is this. Every week, they publish on their website a list of meals for the following two weeks. You can then order the ingredients for the meals to be delivered direct to your door, along with the recipes (including their own step by step photos) to make them.Ingredients are organic, locally sourced and portioned so you do not have to deal with waste and the recipes cover a range of cuisines.We asked Marko a few questions about the service.Tell our audence about yourself, what is your background?I’m 32 years old, married (expecting our first baby) and I live with my wife Isabella in Zürich. I worked for 7 years as a sales manager in the health industry (orthopaedics/surgery). We distributed mobility-aids to hospitals and doctors. After this job I went to the real estate business, which I didn’t like. Within this job I had the idea with Vidis Kochtüte.What is the concept behind the Food Service?The business model was founded in sweden and became very popular and successful since 2007. The idea was born because moms & dads in sweden work almost full-time and didn’t have much time (were not motivated) to do grocery shopping after a hard day, beside taking over the kids from the crib. So they ended up cooking the same easy things over and over and didn’t follow a healthy nutrition.With our food service we create varied recipes every week and deliver them together with organic ingredients (packed to the size needed) to our customers home or Zurich city offices. The bags are delivered on each monday and are available for 2 or 4 servings with 3 or 5 recipes for the weekly dinners, except some basics like salt, pepper, oil etc. The meals must be easy to prepare and finished within 20-35 min. The nutritional value will not exceed 550 kcal per person. At the end of august 2014 we will offer a new bag with „paleo lifestyle recipes“. This way of eating conviced us, because it’s based on natural ingredients, is healthy for body & soul, prevents diseases and is 100% gluten- and lactose-free.How do you think the service specifically helps our Expat audience?My experience is that most of the expats traditionally cook for dinner. After a certain time people start to cook things over and over. That’s the point where you want to have more variety on your plate. On the other hand expats come to Switzerland to work and must be very busy. So they don’t have much time to think about new recipes and where to buy the best ingredients. As an ex-busy-manager I know how it is when you stand in front of an empty fridge, but you actually wanna eat healthy. So this is where I like to help people by introducing my cooking revolution. Our recipes are all written in german and english, so it’s also a kind of language school *smile“.How do you source your foods? Do you have a particular ethos such as supporting local producers, preferring organic foods, etc?This is a subject I REALLY care about. I think our community is starting to care more and more about food which makes me confident. With our service we use almost everything in organic quality. Because using local and seasonal foods which are grown naturally without using pesticides, have so much influence on our health and environment. We grant the best for our body, support the local economy/farming, prevent diseases and reduce the CO2 emission. I know it’s always a matter of price, but BIO is not too expensive, the conventional products are too cheap. So we need to rethink! I found a very nice quote on that recently:
The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.
What are your plans for the next year or so?I don’t like to make fixed plans, because then we are getting to unflexible. We are still at a stage where it’s difficult to tell where our journey goes. We optimize a lot and I’m always opened to new sustainable food trends. Eating is a very individual subject and we always listen to our customers needs and try to help wherever we can. I’m very excited how our company is developing.Finally, can you give us something that you consider a secret Zürich tip? Hmmm, as I’m a passionate entrepreneur I spend a lot of time for my business. I don’t remember any secret things I’ve done here and I’m not from Zurich. I know something in Schwyz (where I was raised) which will blow you away. Start hiking with flash lights or head lights in the morning at 4 o’clock from Ibergeregg to the large Mythen (1900m height), to watch the sunrise and drink a “kafi-schnaps” in the small restaurant afterwards. It’s about a 1.5 hour walk, so check the sunrise-time so you don’t miss. Choose a sunny day and don’t forget to take warm clothes and power-snacks with you. Many thanks to Marko for his answers. You can find out more at Vidis Kochtüte.
Expats always miss products “from home”. We spoke to the good people at Jim’s British Market who help solve this problem for those originally from the UK who are looking for British products in Switzerland. Jim’s British Mini-Market in St Genis-Pouilly (France), close to CERN, has traded successfully since the day Jim and Margaret Anderson opened their family business in 1996.During the early years, Jim would regularly return to the UK to collect a range of British products, bringing a sense of nostalgia and comfort to those relocating to this area of France and across the border in Geneva.Following the opening of their traditional tearoom in 1997, Jim’s became the first in the vicinity to introduce British Fish ‘n’ Chips to the menu, with customers flocking from miles around for the unique taste of battered fish, chipped potatoes and mushy peas with a sprinkle of salt ‘n’ vinegar!How long have you been in Switzerland?Jim’s British Market opened its doors at Gland, Switzerland on 20 January 2012; with the sales graph line trending ever high each year.The prospect of finding and supplying new business partners, in densely populated expat regions of Switzerland is exciting (prime locations include Zug, Zurich and Vevey). The bigger volume, the cheaper Jim’s prices.What prompted you to start Jim’s British Market?With the huge influx of British expats migrating to the Geneva area, a limited choice of British brands and stable product lines, Jim recognised the opportunity to offer the Brits, duty paid food goods at fair value prices.The initial range was quite modest but has since grown to over 1,500 lines in store. The range includes frozen and fresh lines, many of which are selected from Marks & Spencer (go online for your M&S Order Form at www.jims.ch).Jim is also focused upon delivering more goods to customers and mini-markets located in the more remote areas of the country this winter e.g. Verbier and other Alpine ski resorts How do you decide what products to carry? Jim’s shop managers and food buyers are British; an essential and integral part of the business, as they can relate to the products and understand the British consumers’ trends and choices. Our customers, also have a huge input in to which lines and brands to source and supply. Jim’s philosophy is to offer goods at competitive, fair value prices. Therefore, with import restrictions and the influence of Swiss import duties and tax being added to the base cost, managers need to define exactly what the market can substantiate with certain stock lines, e.g. high import duty charges are imposed by Swiss customs, on dairy, potato and fresh meat products (to protect their own Swiss farming market). Also one needs to buy weight “quota” from the Swiss Government and keep a constant eye on the ever fluctuating currency exchange rate. Add this with the daunting prospect by buying stock with a limited shelf life or that simply changes with seasonal appeal, then stock-purchasing can be a challenge, especially with fresh food stock, as refrigerated transportation costs are not cheap. What are your top selling lines? Jim’s Marks and Spencer selected range of fresh food creates huge interest; the M&S Gastropub range, M&S Scotch Eggs, M&S Aromatic Crispy Duck, M&S Back Bacon, M&S Fish n Chips, M&S Pork Sausages and Chipolatas, M&S Beef & Chilli Sausages, M&S Steak & Kidney pies, Chicken pies, Steak ‘n Ale pies, Melton Mowbray pork pies, Warburtons Crumpets, Cornish Pasties (and seasonal products e.g. Haggis, Mince Pies, Christmas Cakes, Puddings and Xmas Crackers). From the ambient section: Self-raising flour, jelly, mint sauce, golden syrup, soft dark brown sugar, Ella’s Kitchen baby food, pickles and chutneys, Cadbury’s chocolate, oatcakes, PG Tips, Shreddies, Hellman’s mayonnaise and Jim’s gluten free range. From the drinks section: Ginger Beer (alcoholic and non-alcoholic), Magners Cider, Stones Ginger Wine, Ribena, Robinson’s, Belvoir and Roses cordials. Jim’s also offers fresh food from local British and South African suppliers: Meat Point (www.meatpoint.ch), our South African butchers produce fresh Boerewors, Biltong, T-Bone Steaks, Hamburger Patties, Loin of Pork (with crackling). Le Pie (www.lepie.ch): Chicken ’n’ Tarragon, Beef ’n’ Guinness, Spicy Pork ’n’ Paprika (delicious) How does one go about ordering from Jim’s British Market? To order from Jim’s online: Go to www.jims.ch and register as a “New Customer” and start adding selections to “Your Basket”. Registered customers receive “Loyalty Points” (one Point for every CHF30 increment spent); accumulate 15-Points to receive CHF20 reward Plus, if your order value is over CHF 100, your order is delivered (next day) FREE OF CHARGE. For secure payment, register with PayPal to complete your order What is your number one tip for expats in Switzerland? KEEP CALM AND HAVE A CUP O’ TEA (preferably from Jim’s) Expats Rule Of Thumb:Year 1: Exciting, stressful and unsettling (can feel like you’re on holiday at times, surreal)…..have yet to discover Jim’s, so keep buying Tesco favourites to bring back to Switzerland Year 2: Unsure if you really want to be out here…start to reminisce, miss the pub and Sunday roast, yearn for spells at home with the family, download Skype, may of heard of Jim’s Year 3: Start to integrate, feeling more settled, can say “Bonjour, ca va?” with confidence and get a reply in French (that you don’t understand, so just reply “et-vous?”)! Found Jim’s, now feel at home, everything’s fine…
Passing the restaurant on a regular basis I have come to notice that there is always a humble crowd of people gathered outside Bohemia – in summer even more so of course. Walking through the bar section upon entering we were soon greeted by a friendly member of staff who showed us to our table in the restaurant area. Despite the restaurant’s occupancy level of approximately 75% the menu cards were brought to us in good time and the service didn’t seem rushed at any stage of the evening. The interior of the restaurant has been designed and decorated tastefully to suit the American brasserie concept. The background music as well as the hustling and bustling sounds coming from the bar give the place a certain vibrancy – yet they aren’t intrusive. The open view towards the grill station – where the chefs work their magic – provides a joyous forecast, making you hungry while waiting for your meal. After a brief intermission the main course is served. The Irish Rack of Lamb (300 g at CHF 48.00) was tender on the inside and slightly crusty on the edges – just how I like it. The side-order chips were portioned generously. Following the waitress’ recommendation I opted for the red wine sauce to accompany the lamb. This complemented the meat well, although I believe there would have been more exciting options on the menu to select from. The Argentinian Black Angus Filet Mignon beef (220 g at CHF 62.00) with roasted seasonal vegetables as a side was ordered medium-rare and was very tender indeed. The waitress recommended the Chimichurri sauce – which is really more of an oil – to go with the filet. The balanced mix of fresh herbs and garlic tasted delicious but at the same time did not overpower the meat. Our evening is rounded off with a coffee (CHF 4.50), which was served elegantly on a tray accompanied with water and a sweet treat. Our total bill for the two of us including two coke beverages (CHF 4.50 each) – which by the way were served with lemon and ice – totaled to CHF 156.50. So… if you like your meat done properly and appreciate friendly and professional service as well as a good atmosphere to accompany your meal you should nip into Bohemia one night – or for lunch of course – and order what takes your fancy. Bohemia also offers an à la carte brunch at weekends.
We are happy to present StickerKid to you – the leading brand in Switzerland for high quality, personalized name labels for children. The second good news: Zurichexpats.com made a special deal with StickerKid just for you! All Zurichexpats.com clients get a special 30% discount off all StickerKid products until the end of May 2014.Founded 10 years ago, StickerKid has built up a strong reputation in the region for providing durable, 100% Swiss-made name labels, which help to identify children’s clothes, shoes, toys and other belongings that are all too easily lost in playgrounds, at kindergarten, at school or in summer camps. What makes the personalized stickers unique is, besides the excellent Swiss quality, the wide range of options you can choose from. You are able to add the text you want, you can select between a variety of colors, logos, shapes and you can even upload photos and logos yourself to make the labels even more unique. Guaranteed for 10 years, StickerKid’s labels withstand extreme outdoor temperatures, including hot summer days at the beach as well as cold wintry weather. They are scratch resistant, so that sand or other outdoor activities of your little heroes do not harm the labels. Not only resistant to sport or outdoor activities, they also withstand the rigors of the dishwasher, microwave or freezer. StickerKid’s iron-on labels have been created to withstand 45 rounds of washing at high temperature (up to 60°), but can also be removed without harming the fabric should you wish to pass on the clothes to another child.Doerthe and Chris, the new owners of StickerKid explain the history of the company to us: ”StickerKid was founded by Mark, a good friend of ours, who saw the need for personalized labels with his own kids. His sons were little ‘magicians’ who managed to lose all their toys, some clothes and even shoes. As lost items added up, so did the frustration of re-buying things (not to mention the stress when a favourite cuddly toy went missing). Michael, a brilliant engineer and computer expert joined the team and together they developed StickerKid, the technology and processes behind our products.” Chris continued, “The technology and quality of our StickerKid stickers and labels is really unique. The team has spent 7 years to identify the right materials, define and optimize the production process and test the quality of the products over years in any possible condition. But the time spent perfecting the products have been worth it. Our StickerKid labels are now a favourite choice amongst Swiss parents looking for a long-lasting solution to marking their children’s clothes and belongings!” StickerKid offers a range of products to suit all eventualities. Next to the classic starter-sets, the back-to-school- sets or the stickers for shoes or the iron-on stickers they also provide bracelets. You can mention all important information as allergies, emergency-contacts, etc. on them. New this year, are StickerKid’s photo stickers, which can be personalized with a photo of your child. You can easily upload a photo, or a logo, via the StickerKid website. Fabulous to make your labels even more personal and unique. This personalized photo stickers help to ensure toys, school and sport equipment to be returned safely to you from e.g. playground, school or sleep-overs. Whilst many of you may already have used StickerKid’s labels in the past, the chances are that you will have not placed any orders through the company’s new owners.