GENEVA – Tucked away in the culinary desert that is the Nations neighborhood of Geneva, hides Takinoa, a delish healthy eatery offering ASC and MSC certified fish, local in-season products, healthy and tasty menus to the lunch crowd in the area.
The “slow food” eatery, which broke ground in November 2015 and is nestled at the Nations Business Centre across the street from the ITU building, boasts a locally grown/raised menu that combines low-fat with high nutrition.
According to Takinoa’s Yaël Bruigom the restaurant/cafeteria specializes in creating “food for the soul that makes your taste buds and body happy”.
The brainchild of Eric Lebel, the restaurant, whose name means “Food for Joy”, combines the founder’s passion for nature preservation and healthy living.
Many of the food offerings are familiar, including vegan options, no fried foods, refined or artificial sugars, no additives or saturated oils.
The notable difference lies in the 90% Swiss sourced materials —in principle no locally available product is served out of season —and for me, the radical no butter, and no or low cheese menu.
I once asked a Parisian friend for “low-fat” French cuisine tips, to which he replied, “what’s the point?” I was skeptical, but after sampling the menu, including taking home a few items for the family, it proved to be taste bud proof-positive (the rotating menu includes meat plates for carnivorous appetites).
My ASC (Aquaculture Stewardship Council) salmon was prepared in front of me at a grill station offering two other options, chicken fillet and meat skewer, and was served with a side of home-baked fries that were both crispy and moist – done to perfection. An artichoke heart, carrot side was the perfect accompaniment.
At first thought, chocolate tofu desert sounded like an oxymoron but the cupcake sized desert—indicative of a “less is more” philosophy in the sweets department —was more than a match for its flour and butter laden cousins, in flavour and texture.
There are also hearty take away items including personal favourite, falafel wraps, and fusion salads including curried quinoa with sweet potato.
Give Takinoa a try next time you are pondering your food options within lunch-breakable distance from the Palais.
The food chain just opened this week a new store-restaurant in Eaux-Vives, joining five others including in Nyon and Lausanne.