Update 16 October 2016: The HelVeg Café is unfortunately closed, but don’t worry! Plenty more veg and veg-friendly restaurants have taken its place. Read all about them in my Guide to Vegan Food in Geneva!
HelVeg Café is a place I’ve been wanting to visit for some time now, so when I heard that the Pour L’Égalité Animale (For Animal Equality) Association was organizing a dinner there I jumped at the chance. HelVeg (I know, the name sounds rather unfortunate in English, but it’s a reference to the Confœderatio Helvetica, the Latin name for Switzerland) is a gourmet vegan restaurant located in the quiet, leafy suburb of Champel, a short bus ride away from the centre of Geneva.
In addition to a table-service restaurant with three-course menus priced between 45 and 55 Swiss francs, on the upstairs floor of the lovely, old building there is also an all-vegan shop specializing in superfoods. If you’re in need of some chlorella, some spirulina or some wheat grass, this is the place to come.
Next, there was a salad of fresh green, sprouts and pomegranate arils.
This was followed by a main course of quinoa “couscous” featuring tofu kefta.
And finally, the meal was rounded off with a generous portion of creamy, chocolate mousse.
While I can’t say that the food blew me away, everything was tasty, fresh and well-presented. The service was extremely slow, but then again we were a fairly large group.
I should point out that this was a special menu created just for the PEA dinner, though the mousse (or at least something similar) does feature on the regular menu as well, which is fairly limited and consists of two 3-course meals. One of these is raw, and both are completely vegan and feature organic and local produce as much as possible. If you don’t want all three courses, you can also order individual items à la carte, and if you order to take away the prices are a few francs cheaper.
Vegan cooking classes are also held regularly and centre on different themes ranging from sport and recovery to aphrodisiac foods! All in all, HelVeg offers a lot more than just a restaurant and is a great addition to the still nascent vegan scene in Geneva.