Cucina e Libri Nomen est Omen

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Opening Times



Cucina e Libri
Fröhlichstrasse 39
8008 Zurich-District 8
How to get there


0041 44 383 21 39

Granted, until my visit last week, it was some time ago that I had dined in Cucina e Libri. At that time, already under the guidance of Carlo Bernasconi, the restaurant was still uniquely known as 'Heimelig'. In line with Café Heimelig, Carlo Bernasconi became successor 9 years ago today. 'Heimelig' (meaning ‘homey’) it should remain, for everyone. That was one of Carlo's personal goals for his own restaurant.

Another goal was to realise a restaurant as he had encountered it, in the time when he was, in particular, a guest and restaurant critic. And he says he has eaten for so long as a critic. Approximately 20 years. His long-term experience and strong personality has been brought to use in Cucina e Libri.

Now, what does a restaurant offer that draws on a wealth of experience in such a way? Nomen est omen. Name as omen. As the name suggests, it’s about Italian kitchen and books. These are the two great passions of the owner. Carlo himself also cooks. With love, he changes and freshly prepares the courses daily.


His culinary background is the northern Italian region of Veneto, characterised by a tangible and aromatic cuisine that does not skimp with the use of butter. During our palatable visit, in addition to braised beef, veal steak with lemon variations, and monkfish, is the wild boar sausage with chicken liver risotto on offer. The wild boar sausage surpasses everything.

The wines offered come almost exclusively from Italy and are excellently selected. Thus, one can also indulge in a Timorasso, which Carlo persuaded his wine merchant to import.

The ambience of the tiny premises with its 25 seats can be best described with the word "room". Carlo's second great love for books lends itself to the room being surrounded by cookbooks, which may be taken from the shelf, perused, and bought. And who could be a better conversation partner than Carlo himself, author and co-author of several cookbooks, including 'La cucina verde' and 'La cucina dolce'.

My conclusion: Carlo has not only achieved, but has far exceeded his goals. His conclusion: It gets better with age. The recipe for success lies in freshness and the preparation with few, but good flavours, and that the guest should not be overwhelmed.

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Cucina e Libri – Nomen est Omen
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