For years Zürich has been named one of the cities with the highest
quality of life in the world. Both the city and the surrounding
region offer guests an astounding variety of gastronomic and
cultural experiences. The city itself, the lake, rivers, and nearby
Uetliberg mountain provide endless opportunities for sightseeing,
strolling, and relaxing. With its exceptional lakeside setting, and
occasional views of the snowcapped Glarner Alps on the horizon,
Zürich, Downtown Switzerland, offers a unique mix of world-class
attractions: culinary delights, spas, art, summer festivals, Christmas
treats, nightlife and shopping.
Even the quality of water in Zürich is exceptional: anyone who is
thirsty can simply drink from an outdoor fountain. Indeed, Zürich
has 1,200 fountains, more than almost any other city in the world.
Another liquid treat comes in the form of Zürich’s wines, the
product of a culture that goes back to the time of the Romans,
who first introduced vines from the other side of the Alps. Since
then, grapes have been efficiently cultivated there, and guests
can sample superb wines made from Pinot noir, Riesling
Silvaner, Räuschling, Gewürztraminer and Kerner vines grown in
the region, some even within the city limits. Many winegrowers
offer the chance to get to know Zürich wines through tastings.
The history of Zürich beer, meanwhile, is rather more recent –
and therefore all the more fun to get to know. Several local
breweries are proud to show guests their beers being made.
The finest specialities
The concentration of restaurants in the Zürich region is exceptionally
high, and the range of gastronomic experiences available
accordingly varied. Sample wines poured for tasting in the
cellars of the Old Town or enjoy traditional Zürich specialities
served in the guild houses of the historic heart of the city.
Cutting-edge cuisine is served in converted factories and warehouses
in former industrial districts and lavish gourmet meals
are presented in mountainside restaurants or in elegant outdoor
surroundings down on the lake shore. This varied blend of
setting, atmosphere and regional specialities makes for a uniquely
Zürich experience. In the city centre, the Sprüngli pastry shop
and café captivates visitors with its legendary Luxemburgerli, delicate macaroons coupled with creamy fillings. In Baden, bakeries
are once again serving the Spanischbrödli (little Spanish
rolls) – a much-loved pastry with a long tradition. And the Zuger Kirschtorte, layers of crisp almond meringue, kirsch-moistened cake, and kirsch butter cream from Confiserie Speck is legendary.
The most famous Zürich dish, however, is Geschnetzeltes with
Rösti, creamy shredded veal with crisp, buttery home-fried potatoes,
best enjoyed in one of the medieval guild houses. Whether
in the city or the countryside, outstanding chefs richly rewarded
with GaultMillau points are serving up light, imaginative food
that is simply unforgettable.