Where to Eat in Zurich & Review of the Street Food Festival

Well established on the Zurich food scene, the Street Food Festival Zurich has gone from strength to strength. With over 150 food sellers, its part of FOOD ZURICH, which celebrates the unique flavours of Switzerland. The Street Food Festival itself is a four day celebration of all things foodie takes place throughout the town, with the main hub in Hardturmstrasse.

Street Food Festival Zurich

Arriving there, we noticed a huge festival tent and many food stalls dotted around. I was impressed with the efforts people had put in to decorate their stands, with quirky vans and flowers giving the area a joyful vibe.

Street Food Festival Zurich visit
The focus this year is on food trucks and the food offering is extensive, with ceviche, dumplings, Swiss raclette, sushi and tacos to name just a few. Some of the stallholders had got into the colourful spirit of the event by dressing up for it. There was plenty of seating and just behind the festival there were garden allotments where you could also wander. I tucked into a delicious chocolate cupcake with my guide, Elisabeth. Street Food Festival 2017 has now finished, but take a look at www.street-food-festival.ch and start planning your trip for next year!

 Street Food Festival Zurich review
Where to Eat in Zurich

During my trip to Zurich, I was keen to sample some of the other delicacies for which the city is famous. I started my culinary journey with a visit to Haus Hiltl on Sihlstrasse. Its the oldest vegetarian restaurant in the world, recognized by the Guinness Book of Records as having opened in 1898. I’m not vegetarian but this place is known for being one of the best places to eat in Zurich. I was expecting a casual buffet, however the restaurant section has tablecloths and waiter service. There’s also a more casual cafe and a “vegetarian butchers”. I popped in after my meal and was intrigued by the packets of seitan, which I hadn’t come across before. It was one of the ingredients of my moreish Züri Geschnetzeltes with organic seitan, mushrooms, rösti, white wine and vegan whipped cream and is a wheat protein that tastes a bit like meat.

Haus Hiltl vegetarian restaurant in Zurich Switzerland
After lunch, I checked into the charming Hotel Storchen, where the staff told me about their latest foodie innovation, a photo coffee. In their cosy bar overlooking the Limmat river, the friendly staff will prepare you a coffee with your face on it, using a special machine. Most importantly, it had a smooth and creamy taste with no bitterness.

Storchen selfie coffee
Switzerland is famous for its chocolate but traditionally that has been mainly milk rather than dark chocolate. However, Max Chocolatier changed the game with its incomparable creations. This bespoke chocolate maker aims to have you “experience chocolate for the first time”. They use only the finest natural, local ingredients and like the best restaurants, there production is seasonal with different chocolates available in Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. From their boutique on picturesque Schlüsselgasse, a cobbled street in the Old Town, they run regular chocolate tastings. I was fortunate to try one and you can really taste the difference with their chocolate. It’s intense yet subtle at the same time, and I particularly liked their salted caramel truffle as the salt doesn’t overpower the sweet caramel. They also make fantastic ice cream and sorbets with unusual flavours such as Prosecco Aperol and strawberry with balsamic vinegar and orange zest.

Max Chocolatier Lucerne and Zurich Switzerland
That evening, there was another foodie treat to come, at the Zurich celebration of the Worldwide InstaMeet. Bringing together some of the world’s top Instagrammers and food bloggers, it was held in the idyllic location of Strandbad Wollishofen. I say idyllic, but it was raining hard, thankfully there was plenty of indoor cover. Outdoor swimming pools are one of the most charming Zurich attractions and like this one, many are on the lakeside. The food had been prepared by Swiss food bloggers whom we met during a spectacular demonstration of smoke bombs! There were healthy salads, marinated meats and homemade brownies to enjoy.

Zurich Switzerland Instameet 2017
The next morning I headed to Bebek, a neighbourhood restaurant on Badenerstrasse known for its stylish decor and Oriental brunches. I opted for the Sunday brunch selection, with freshly baked bread, orange juice, feta salad, hummus, fruit salad, Bircher museli, bio yoghurt and buttery croissants.

Bebek, Zurich, Switzerland
After some sightseeing in Zurich Old Town, I returned to an old favourite for lunch. Zeughauskeller is a historic guild hall dating from 1487, popular with locals and tourists for its lively atmosphere and hearty dishes such as pork and veal sausage with homemade potato salad. We’d visited it on a previous weekend in Zurich and thoroughly enjoyed it. My waiter was friendly and spoke excellent English. The restaurant is quite cheap by local standards and there were several locals dining alone so its a good choice for solo travellers as well as couples and groups.

Zeughaskeller in Zurich, Switzerland
For dinner the next day, I wanted somewhere casual as I was unaccompanied, and after reading favourable reviews online, I chose Restaurant Boucherie Au-G-ust on Rennweg. It’s a pretty cobblestone street in Zurich Altstadt, in the heart of the Augustiner quarter. This area is home to the Widder Zunft or butchers’ guild and the owner, Benjamin Sigg has created a French inspired brasserie known for its meat dishes. I enjoyed their Leberkaese «AuGust», a local meat loaf, as well as spaetzli Swiss egg noodles and a superb marinated Scottish salmon, with sweet mustard and dill. A glass of Zurich wine, Truttiker Riesling Sylvaner from the Zahner winery, went well with all my dishes. The staff were lovely and this is another place that I’d recommend for those dining on their own or for couples enjoying a romantic meal, thanks to the atmospheric lighting.

Brasserie August, Zurich, Switzerland
Kronenhalle is more than just a restaurant, it’s a Zurich institution! Famous for its incomparable art collection, there are paintings by Chagall, Matisse, Miro and Picasso adorning its venerable walls. It was opened in 1924 by Hulda and Gottlieb Zumsteg. Hulda was by all accounts an extraordinary woman, who is depicted in a beautiful painting by Varlin. She used to give the remains of clients’ dishes to impoverished artists and encourage diners to buy their artworks. One of her sons, Gustav, made his fortune in the silk trade and became friends with many fashion designers as well as artists, collecting paintings that would later hang on the walls of Kronenhalle. The food is as exquisite as the artworks, with some delicious dishes such as Wiener Schnitzel and pepper steak with rösti potatoes. The best thing is, they automatically give you a second helping! There’s a superb wine list and you should save room for deserts such as apple tart or homemade chocolate mousse. I was lunching with Zurich bloggers, Harrys Ding who are a great source of information on where to dine. Kronenhalle’s friendly manager, Christian, showed us the lovely Swiss Gallery and separate bar area after lunch. Designed by artist brothers Alberto and Diego Giacometti, the bar is a magnificent showcase for the other paintings in the Kronenhalle collection.

Kronenhalle Zurich - one of the best restaurants in Zurich, Switzerland
Check out some of our favourite places to eat in Zurich here:

Where to Stay in Zurich

Hotel Storchen on Weinplatz has the perfect location alongside the River Limmat in the heart of the Old Town.

The Storchen Hotel pier, Zurich, Switzerland - read our review at https://luxurycolumnist.com
Their 66 rooms and suites have been recently renovated and the attention to detail is fantastic. My Contemporary Double room overlooked picturesque Weinplatz the river and I could even see the famous stork. It had all mid cons including handy USB chargers, a Samsung tablet, air conditioning and a Nespresso machine. There was a tempting plate of fresh fruit and macarons as well as this cute mini stork soft toy!

The Storchen - great place to stay in Zurich Switzerland
Breakfast was served in the first floor restaurant, with a panoramic view over the river. There was a great selection of meat, cheeses, Bircher muesli and even fresh honeycomb.

How to Get to Zurich

I flew with SWISS from London City Airport, a quick and easy journey. We were served a sandwich as well as a Swiss chocolate, always a good start to a trip! Swiss International Airlines also fly from London Heathrow and they’re a member of Star Alliance, which is handy for members of their loyalty scheme.

Getting Around Zurich

I’d highly recommend the ZürichCARD for getting around Zurich. You can use it for unlimited travel from the airport and around town, as well as in the surrounding area. It works on the trams, buses, trains and even the cable cars such as the one to Felsenegg. You also get a 50% discount on city tours organised by Zurich Tourism and free or reduced admission to most of Zurich’s museums. It costs CHF 24 for 24 hours and CHF 48 for 72 hours for adults and is available online and at many places including Zurich main station and Zurich airport.

Whether you visit for the next Street Food Festival Zurich or simply take a foodie break there, you’re sure to have a great time. Are you a fan of street food? Which of these foodie experiences would you most like to try?

Where to Eat in Zurich & Street Food Festival Review

In association with Zurich Tourism

  • Claire

    I love food festivals, it is a great chance to try lots of different delicious things all in one place! And the rest of Zurich looks like a foodie heaven too – I don’t even drink coffee but I want a coffee with my face on it!!

    • Suze

      I’m not a big coffee drinker either but I’m pretty sure they do decaf too! The festival was great fun as well

  • TwoDayTravels

    That photo coffee is amazing! I’m totally going to check it out in Zurich later this year!!

    • Suze

      Ha ha, isn’t it fun! The bar is open to those who aren’t staying at the hotel so you should definitely check it out

  • Leigh

    That looks like a great festival – I would love to sample all different kinds of foods! This would be a great reason to return to Zurich – I visited at the end of a 16-day trip and didn’t leave my hotel!

    • Suze

      Sounds like a great reason to return and see Zurich in detail, Leigh!

  • Incredible photos! The food choices are incredible! I have never seen a photo coffee, probably the coolest thing out there! Zurich has always been on my list, I need to go for the street festival!

    • Suze

      I’m very glad you like them, Dorene! The street festival is lots of fun and the Storchen coffee is not to be missed either

  • Sherianne Higgins (SherianneKa

    Zurich is such a picturesque city, I’m having a hard time picturing a street food festival there! That coffee art really is ART — amazing!

    • Suze

      The main hub of the festival is slightly outside of the centre but easy to get to on the tram. It was almost a pity to drink the coffee 😉

  • This sounds so fun, I would have loved to meet the Swiss bloggers!

    • Suze

      They were really lovely and they know Zurich like the back of their hand!

  • I never knew Zurich was such a foodie haven, so much delicious food on offer!

    • Suze

      There really is a huge selection, from Swiss to Oriental and other types of cuisine!

  • Tracey Best

    Oh, I’d love to go to the 1898 vegetarian restaurant!! These photos are so amazing. I love the view where you had your breakfast and the coffee photo is amazing!!!

    • Suze

      I’m very glad you like the photos, Tracey – have a great week ahead

  • That cup with your face is incredible! Also, I loved the Storchen, it’s such a good location and great staff!

    • Suze

      Isn’t it hilarious! The Storchen is a lovely hotel and the renovation is really classy

  • Patricia Steffy

    Max Chocolatier would be at the top of my list, and while I’m not a coffee drinker, that coffee photo combo is very cool! Though I’m also not a vegetarian, Haus Hiltl sounds like a must. And I love the idea of combining great art and food at Kronenhalle. Honestly, it sounds like there is a lot of amazing food in Zurich!

    • Suze

      There’s such a wide selection of food and the chocolates are incredible

  • Michelle Marcos

    The photo coffee is SO cool! I’ve never seen that before! I went to Lucerne, Switzerland and had some of the best food. I need to go back and explore the country more!

    • Suze

      I actually got engaged in Lucerne so I’m keen to go back there too

  • Lena Eriksen

    That hotel looked so lovely – love places with views 😍 I have never been to Switzerland and it’s really great to read about your experiences – would definitely love to visit! Zurich sounds like a cool place 😄

  • Susanna Kelly

    Oh my gosh, I am vegetarian and am Zurich almost 2 times a year and I’ve never heard of that place! I must go next time I am in town!! Thanks for the tip! The festival also looks really yummy with great food from all over.

    • Suze

      You will love Haus Hiltl, Susanna! The festival was a lot of fun too

  • Katherine Nairn

    Oh whoa, you’ve high lighted some great places for foodies! As a vegetarian I would be super keen trying Haus Hiltl. I am also such a coffee lover and Hotel Storchen sounds like an interesting place. It would be so weird seeing your face on a cup of coffee but also cool!

    • Suze

      Yes it was weird having my face on there and the waiters were fascinated too as the machine is brand new!

  • Julie Laundis

    This makes me want to eat everything in this post! It looks totally amazing

    • Suze

      It was all very tempting and they really respect the seasons so everything is fresh

  • Even their street foods look gorgeous. LOL
    I’d love to check out Haus Hiltl myself.

    • Suze

      I’m sure you’d enjoy Haus Hiltl for the sheer variety and quality of the food!

  • Hannah Martin

    Oh my gosh this all looks delicious! Zurich here I come hahaha

  • I didn’t know Zurich had a food festival. Fantastic. I love Swiss Chocolate already and had my fill when I was there so I’d love to to see and taste all the chocolate treats. That coffee machine that put your face in the foam looks a bit freaky but cool none the less lol.

  • travelscout

    Looks like you had an amazing experience! The cappuccino maker was so cool. A little odd but, different. I’d love to try Restaurant Boucherie Au-G-ust, the interior looks so authentic 🙂

  • The food looks amazing! Is this festival only held annually? I went last year for a day and the food was expensive (paid almost 20 for a dish that didn’t even fill half my stomach). But otherwise Zurich is really lovely!

  • Any Galván

    can´t believe the coffee art!! that´s amazing!! Everything looks so good!

  • Food festivals are amazing – this looks like so much fun! Would love a coffee at Hotel Storchen 🙂

    Miriam x

  • Monica Houghton

    I LOVE street food, I need to go back to Zurich now!

  • They have such a great street food scene, all looks yummy. Zurich looks very clean and vibrant Lucy. X

  • Mukund Raman

    Treat to the eyes and the tummy too.. The photo coffee seems unreal… Nicely written!

  • Edward

    Hey Suze, kudos for bringing a fresh perspective to an old favourite! From what you’ve written here, I have a feeling you’d love Poland as much (if not more 😛 ). Have you ever had a chance to check it out?

    • Suze

      No but I really want to visit Poland!

  • Christine Connell

    I’m heading to Zurich today! Perfect timing 🙂