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Vegan restaurant Anoah in Zurich: Interview with founder Noah Rechsteiner


Chef Noah in his Zurich pop-up restaurant Anoah.

Thorsten Maas for Anoah

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For the second time, Noah Rechsteiner invites you to his vegan pop-up Anoah on Zürcher Brauerstrasse. In addition to a fine menu, Zurich’s youngest restaurateur serves a few tips for the veganuary.

20 minutes lifestyle: Noah, when you were 19 your own fine dining restaurant opened. How did that happen?

With a strong will and a little luck: I already knew at the age of 14 that I would one day become a chef and run a restaurant, and I began to collect ideas.

When Rolf Hiltl suggested opening a pop-up two years ago. After my apprenticeship in the Widder restaurant, I started to eat vegan on a trip to Asia, then worked as a cook and recipe developer at Hiltl and at the same time wrote my own vegan restaurant concept. So when the offer for the pop-up came, the Anoah was already in my head. In the three months planned at the time, it was so well received that we can now continue.

Many are currently doing the Veganuary With. Do you have a tip for everyone who wants to eat vegan now or in the future?

The “Greentopf” cookbook, the vegetarian and vegan version of our school book for apprenticeships to cook. It contains simple ingredients – so there is no frustration if you are unsure at first. Every household has around 50 everyday products and if 30 of them are omitted because they are not vegan, nutrition quickly becomes difficult. That’s why you should stock up on soy milk, vegetable oils, cashews, almonds and tofu right from the start. Not only when the cupboards are empty.

And then just get started?

Why not. In addition to the decision to change your diet, it also helps to be aware of your own attitude. I am often asked if it is not difficult to eat a vegan diet. It’s not difficult, because I don’t see it as a challenge, but as a philosophy of life. To make me aware of this again and again, films and documentaries like “Cowspiracy” or “Seaspiracy” on Netflix help me.

Which dish in Anoah is your current favorite?

Our signature dish Purple Rain: This is a truffle risotto served in a red cabbage leaf with red cabbage kimchi, red cabbage vinaigrette to dip the leaf and a vegan parmesan made from nuts. Purple Rain is my dad’s favorite song, with him I also collected the large stones on which the dish, which is very popular with our guests, is served. We recently published the recipe.

What do you recommend if it should be less time-consuming and quick to prepare?

If you don’t have much time in the evening, you can deglaze the fried tofu with soy sauce and serve it with vegetables, fried garlic and black sesame seeds. Also good: Indian dal with basmati rice and yogurt sauce. To do this, wash and cook the orange lentils, fry a few spices or a purchased curry paste, add a few cherry tomatoes and onions and, when the lentils are cooked, mix everything. Then add the basmati rice, soy yoghurt and a few diced cucumber.

The Anoah is open until the end of August, what comes after that?

Actually, I should finish my studies at the hotel management school, currently I’m doing an internship – with myself. But I have an infinite number of ideas for the future, inspired by my community service with self-caterers, Demeter farmers and the nature-loving cook Rebecca Clopath in Graubünden: for example own courtyard with restaurant outside of Zurich. But of course you have to get to know Noah and Anoah first. Another veganuary tip (laughs).

The Anoah in Zurich’s Brauerstrasse runs from December 2021 to August 27, 2022. With monthly changing 5-course menus for CHF 95 (plus wine and juice pairings from CHF 35) you can experience vegan fine dining here take a look around the shop and find inspiration for vegan nutrition. www.anoah.ch

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