Kantorei Restaurant (Figure 1) is sort of hidden on a small path in Zurich called Neumarkt. On a nice day, sit outside to enjoy the weather, the fountain (Figure 2), and the wide array people who go by (from wandering tourists to very fit bike riders who whiz by up the steep cobblestone slopes).
There is an American menu if you ask for one, and you will find most things to seem a bit expensive (because it is). I ordered the local beer (Figure 3), which was deliciously refreshing since I was getting really thirsty from sitting next to a fountain. I know drinking a glass of beer is sort of counterintuitive in this case, but it was satisfying.
Then came my appetizer of cream of fresh asparagus soup (Figure 4). I ordered this because asparagus is in season! Once again, I was disappointed with the size of bowls in Switzerland. This “bowl” cost 12.50 CHF!!! In any case, it was still worth it because this was one of the best soups I have ever had. Although it was creamy, it did not taste like it would weigh me down afterward. In addition, it had cuts of fresh asparagus in the soup. And the best part is putting pieces of the slightly sweet bread in the soup. I actually felt healthy after finishing it, not only because it was a tiny bowl.
Then the waitress brought out the main course: coq au vin (Figure 5). The chicken looked really juicy in the red wine sauce, especially reflecting under the sun, and the rice looked well-seasoned. It looked like the ultimate Mediterranean dish with a bit of an Italian and French influence. Man, was I disappointed. Under the juicy skin, the chicken was lacking in flavor, not to mention the fact that it was overcooked. Also, the rice was dry, and the herbs in it somehow rendered the rice tasteless. I’m not sure how this dish was cooked, but it was a terrible ending to what started out as a superb lunch.
Tip: I really do not have any tips except to NOT order the chicken.
The cream of fresh asparagus soup was beyond amazing, but the size is seriously disappointing. I guess this is just a trait of Swiss restaurants… The main dish was sort of horrible… and since it was the major dish, I had to dock some major evolutionary “history”. The only other saving grace is the ambience of the restaurant in its cozy location.