Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Where to eat and drink in Lausanne: Culture Café

For a country with such a developed palette for the fine gastronomy – wine, chocolate and cheese to name a few of the obvious examples – Switzerland is not particularly known for its coffee. In fact, we’ve often lamented the fact that at all of the cafés that we love here in Lausanne, coffee is a predictable low point in the experience. Unlike the up-and-coming artisanal beer scene (which you know we love), coffee roasting in the Confederation seems to be handled by a few, largely uninspiring brands. Needless to say, when we heard about Culture Café with its distinct mission to bring true coffee culture to Lausanne, we were intrigued to give it a try.

This little coffee shop is housed inside of the Fnac at the Tour Bel-Air – yes, you indeed read that correctly. Inside the Fnac. To get there, you’ll need to head to the lower level and make your way through the hordes of BD fans reading their favorite comic strips (…do you think these guys ever actually buy those books???). In case it isn’t immediately obvious to you, just look for and follow the signs.

The baristas at Culture Café are passionate about making good coffee and in case they aren’t pleased with the outcome of the cappuccino they’ve just made, they’re known to start all over again. They are in a process of testing and tasting and perfecting the art of coffee and are delighted to discuss their experience with you – be prepared for a vocabulary precise enough to describe a good Bordeaux; these guys take every cup very seriously. Each day there is just one coffee to test – why? Because the machine needs to be calibrated to accommodate the particularities of each blend.  We told you – they are not kidding around!

The café itself is slightly retro inspired with modern touches and a soothing dark blue on the walls – details you might otherwise overlook if it weren’t for the fact that it makes Culture Café the perfect place to work. Students and independents who need a quiet place to work for a few hours but who find next door’s Bubble Café a little too boisterous will absolutely love this find! The wifi is reliable and large windows looking out onto the Flon bring in plenty of light. And in case you get hungry, the fresh baked pastries are fantastic as well.

Tell us your thoughts on the coffee that you’ve tried in Lausanne – have we missed any other cafés trying to give serious coffee a go?

Culture Café
Rue de Genève 6

Monday, October 13, 2014

Lausanne Lifestyle: Meet Jaifa

A special thank you to our talented friend Gabriel Garcia Marengo for taking these stunning photographs.

I'm not sure about you, but every once in awhile (ok, more often than not) I start to feel a bit of a fashion lull coming on.  You know, the one where you don't feel inspired, and frankly don't have the energy and time to put effort into your look every.single.day. When I became a mother, I hit a new low--I remember sitting with a friend for coffee and finding a stain on the jeans I was wearing (for the fifteenth time in a row) and flicking at the stain to remove most of it. I wore those jeans four more times after that before washing them.

While some of you are judging, I know there are several of you that are nodding your heads in total agreement. This post is for both of you.

I met Jaifa almost a year ago through a Baby Sensory class here in Lausanne and the first thing I noticed about her was she is absolutely stunning. I realized that Jaifa always looked so put together, so fashionable (her former career in diplomacy must have helped), yet was a mother of three children. How in the world did she do it? I decided to ask.

Jaifa playing with her two youngest, Guilliana & Willem

Jaifa was kind enough to invite us into her home (and her wardrobe) to give us a peek and some advice on how we can look great and feel great, even on a tight schedule. Our great friend Eleni, from Eleni Eyebrows, was also on-hand offering some beauty tips as well.

How would you describe your style?
I don't like to be pinned down to one category--fashion is part of my creative expression. Some days I feel like I want to look classic, others I want to be trendy. Sometimes I want to look sexy, other times it's better to go conservative. I love being able to change depending on my mood or my preferences.

Jaifa swears that every mother needs a backpack and we couldn't agree more.

What are some staple items all women should have in their closet?
A good pair of jeans (splurge for the high quality ones, even if that means spending more--you'll be thankful you did), a solid soft jersey dress, comfortable flats, a jumpsuit (effortless and trendy--and breastfeeding friendly!) and leggings.

We love this jersey dress because it's comfortable, easy to wear, and so flattering

A wrap dress is a closet staple (and breastfeeding friendly!), this one is from the original maker of the wrap dress: DVF

What's your favorite go-to item for everyday?
Leggings--there are so many different options for leggings these days; from spandex to cashmere to leather paneled, they're easy, comfortable, and chic at the same time.

Can you show us how to transition leggings from morning to noon to night?
The key is investing in some nicer leggings, perhaps ones with a pattern or extra details--then you can go to the gym in the morning, switch your top and shoes and get to the playground with your kids, then swap the top for a nice fitted dress and put on some high heels and you're ready to go out!

We were so impressed with Jaifa's ability to create three different looks with the same exact leggings: a morning yoga look, park with the kids look, and a fancy evening dinner look.

Do you have any advice to new mothers who are feeling the [fashion] blues?
New-new mothers, give yourself some time. Let yourself eat, let yourself sit, don't put pressure on yourself! All other mothers, set realistic expectations. You know what you feel comfortable with, you know what you look good in and what looks bad--follow your sense of style and your comfort level. At the same time, try to be courageous too. Try a different color lipstick, or a different line on your lid, play with patterns and colors--don't live your life full of limitations. Fashion is meant to be fun! If you're having a hard time with inspiration--pull up some fashion blogs, watch what people are wearing around you, or flip through a magazine. 

Do you have any tricks that make you feel great?
Activity. I need to do some sort of physical activity everyday. Lausanne is such a perfect city for this because you don't need a gym membership--the city is your gym! Walk along the lake, push your stroller up the hills, do yoga at home using an internet tutorial. Whatever it is, do something good for yourself, good for your body, everyday. 

We asked Eleni, from Eleni Eyebrows, to offer some beauty tips to those of us who are on a crunch for time. Here are the basic essentials:

  • First, use a tinted moisturizer instead of foundation with an SPF factor--you can find these everywhere (i.e. BB and CC creams).
  • Next is the most important of all, do the brows. Eyebrows are such a game-changer when it comes to looking manicured--if you keep your brows in good shape, you don't really need much else. Eleni uses Anastasia products, both a pencil to fill out the brow lightly, as well as a brow gel to keep all the hairs nicely in their rightful shape and place. (If you haven't seen Eleni yet, you must. Seriously.)
  • After, apply mascara. There's no rule about which mascara brand works best--honestly we've tried $7 drugstore mascaras that have worked better than the $50 high-end ones. Use whatever brand works best for your lashes.
  • Then it's onto the cheeks. Use a bronzer (Eleni used Peggy Sage, who just opened a store on Rue de Bourg); start at the apple of your cheeks and direct the brush upward toward your ear. Bronzers are quite versatile because you can also lightly brush them along your forehead, nose, chin, to give you that sought-after glow.
  • Finally the lips. Here's where you can get creative and go wild (if you wish) and it will add no extra time to your beauty regimen. However, Eleni and Jaifa both swear by Dior Lip Glow--a color that adapts to each individual woman's lips and requires no liner. It's also not sticky and leaves no color trail behind, so you can kiss your kids or partner without leaving a trace!

If you wish to quickly transform your day look to an evening one, try using a copper shimmer on the eye, opt for a darker shade of lip color, and if you're feeling brave, try a cat's eye or similar line on your lid!

Thank you Jaifa and Eleni for spending some time with us and sharing these valuable tips. Do you have any fashion must-haves or beauty advice that could make our lives a bit easier? If so, please share with us!

If you'd like to see more photos from our Saturday morning together, visit our photographer Gabriel Garcia Marengo's albums here, here, and here.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Meet the Makers: La Nebuleuse

Arthur [left] and Jeremy [right] (not pictured, Kouros)

All photos in this post are thanks to our friend Gabriel. Check out his work here.

Even though they are one of the youngest breweries in Lausanne, making their first sale in March, Nebuleuse isn’t one who needs an introduction. The demand for their beer has gotten so high, that they’ve found themselves in the slightly hilarious and extremely endearing position of going to the store and buying their own beer back just so they can drink it. I know, right?

Bien qu’elle soit l’une des plus jeunes brasseries de Lausanne, ne faisant sa première vente qu’en mars, La Nébuleuse n’a plus besoin d’être présentée. La demande pour leur bière s’est tellement accrue qu’ils se sont trouvés dans la position hilarante de devoir aller acheter leur propre bière en magasin afin qu’ils puissent en boire !

There’s something oddly familiar when entering a brewery--the sense that you are right in the epicenter of a creative space; a space that has witnessed several triumphs, but has also endured its share of disasters. It’s fragile, it’s raw, it’s real. This is something that Arthur, Jeremy, and Kouros are extremely transparent about; brewing beer is hard work. Correction: brewing great beer is hard work. There’s a common misconception that brewers sit around and drink their own beer all day, while the large vats surrounding them do the work. But this couldn’t be further from the truth--Arthur and Jeremy had just completed a 19-hour work day shortly before giving us a tour of their brewery. From managing machinery to regulating recipes, it becomes obvious that brewing craft beer is an extremely scientific process--and because they don’t use pasteurization or filtering, they are working with a live product that is constantly evolving. This career is not for the faint of heart.

Il y a quelque chose d’étrangement familier lorsque l’on entre dans une brasserie ; la sensation qu’on se tient à l’épicentre d’un espace de création, un endroit qui a été témoin de plusieurs victoires, mais qui a aussi eu sa part de désastre. Une expérience fragile, brute, réelle! C’est une chose dont Arthur, Jeremy et Kouros nous parlent volontiers ; brasser de la bière n’est pas une mince affaire. Ou plutôt : brasser de la bonne bière n’est pas une mince affaire. Une idée fausse réside dans l'esprit des gens que les brasseurs trainent en buvant leur propre bière à longueur de journée, pendant que les grosses cuves autour d’eux font tout le travail. Mais rien ne peut être plus éloigné de la réalité ; Arthur et Jeremy finissent à peine une journée de 19 heures avant de nous faire faire le tour du propriétaire. De la gestion de la machinerie au perfectionnement des recettes, il est évident que créer de la bière artisanale est un processus hautement scientifique. Et parce qu’ils ne pasteurisent ni n’utilisent de filtres, ils travaillent avec un produit vivant en constante évolution. Ce n'est pas une carrière à prendre à la légère.

According to Jeremy, Arthur is the ‘power engine’ that provides momentum to Nebuleuse. He was the one who had the crazy idea to start brewing beer, and pushed his comrades to join him in this endeavor. It was Arthur who, through a beer festival in Copenhagen, fell in love with the brew and started collecting notes and observations in a little notebook about the different beers he sampled. Though he describes these early years as an extremely unscientific process, it was these early actions that prompted him to work in a Norwegian brewery years later, and eventually gather his friends to start making craft beer right here in Switzerland.

Selon Jeremy, Arthur est le moteur qui donne son impulsion à La Nébuleuse. Il est celui qui eut l’idée folle de commencer à brasser de la bière et qui poussa ses camarades à le rejoindre dans son entreprise. C’est encore Arthur qui, lors d’un festival de la bière à Copenhague, tomba amoureux du processus et commença à rassembler dans un petit carnet les notes et les observations des différentes bières qu’il goûtait. Bien qu’il décrive ces années comme n’étant absolument pas scientifiques, ce sont ces actions initiales qui l’ont poussé à travailler dans une brasserie norvégienne quelques temps plus tard, et finalement rassembler ses amis afin de commencer l’artisanat de la bière ici en Suisse.

The brewers at La Nebuleuse feel they have a calling: they want to convert people to drink good beer, and actually think about what they are drinking. This is why their bottles are extremely well-designed with helpful information for the drinker; from bitterness ratings to coloring to food pairing suggestions, the makers of this beer want you to discover all of its complexities while simultaneously maintaining its genuine and unpretentious nature.

Les brasseurs de La Nébuleuse sentent qu’ils ont un but à atteindre ; ils veulent convertir le public buvant de la bonne bière à penser à ce qu’il boit. C’est pourquoi leurs bouteilles sont minutieusement élaborées avec des informations utiles au client ; d’une échelle d’amertume à la coloration en passant par des suggestions d’association de mets, les artisans de cette bière veulent que nous découvrions les aspects de sa complexité tout en maintenant sa nature authentique et humble.

We sampled several of their beers, from the Malt Capone porter that smelled like chocolate and tasted like a vanilla-infused coffee, to the Namur Express Belgian style ale that had a nice blend of spices and fizzed on your tongue in just the right way. But our personal favorite was the Embuscade which they describe as an American IPA. While most IPAs are brewed with two to three hop additions, Arthur explained that the Embuscade is brewed with twenty hop additions...in a single hour. And the best thing is that these hops aren't industry standard hops--they use multiple varieties of hops, which is uncommon in the beer industry. But as Jeremy and Arthur said during our time there, they are not restricted by industry standards and expectations: 'if we think it will taste good, we'll brew it.' And we're grateful indeed.

Nous avons goûté plusieurs de leurs bières, de la Malt Capone Porter et ses arômes de chocolats mais sentant le café infusé à la vanille, à la Namur Express Belgian Style Ale qui présente un doux mélange d’épices et pétille sur la langue juste comme il faut. Mais notre préférée a toutefois été l’Embuscade qu’ils décrivent comme une American IPA. Alors que la plupart des Indian Pale Ales sont brassées avec deux voire trois ajouts de houblon, Arthur nous explique que l’Embuscade, elle, est brassée avec 20 additions de houblon… le tout en une heure ! Et la meilleure partie est que ce ne sont pas des houblons industriels standards ; ils utilisent de multiples variétés de houblon, ce qui est assez inhabituel dans l’industrie de la bière. Mais comme nous l’ont dit Jeremy et Arthur lors de notre visite, ils ne sont pas restreints par des normes industrielles ou certaines attentes : « si nous pensons que c’est bon, nous le créons ». Et nous leurs en sommes très reconnaissants !

Arthur and his colleagues get a lot of their inspiration from the US craft beer scene, where craft beers reach a whopping 20% of the market share. But apparently in Switzerland, it’s only about 4% of the market, creating a large gap for quality local beer. This is where the tagline for La Nebuleuse becomes clear: ‘bringing beer to the people’. And it’s also where the entire foundation of their company resides. For Arthur, Jeremy, and Kouros, ‘La Nebuleuse isn’t just a brewery, it’s a world’. For them, it’s all about community--and it just so happens that beer is something that brings people together.

Arthur et ses collègues s’inspirent beaucoup des brasseries artisanales américaines qui occupent 20% du marché. Mais apparemment, en Suisse, seul 4% du marché est occupé par la bière artisanale, ce qui ouvre des portes aux bières locales de qualité. C’est là que le slogan de La Nébuleuse devient clair : « bringing beer to the people » et c’est aussi là-dessus que résident les fondements de leur compagnie. Pour Arthur, Jeremy et Kouros « La Nébuleuse n’est pas juste une brasserie, c’est un monde ». Pour eux, tout est lié à l’esprit de communauté, et il se trouve justement que la bière rassemble les gens.

Claude's Pick:


Our introduction to La Nébuleuse was through its first beer, Stirling.
This beer has a captivating nose and a beautiful copper color. Brewing this uncommon style native to California called “California Common” validates La Nébuleuse’s open-mindedness and enthusiasm, adding further dynamism to the current brew buzz.
This refreshing and slightly bitter beer has a certain roundness with highlights of citrus typical of Simcoe hops. Stirling is a nice gateway beer to discover the diverse world of hoppy beers that is much appreciated by the guys from La Nébuleuse.
The brewers have created an accessible and thirst-quenching beer that has character that is all their own. Well done!
This beer pairs well with pizza, burgers, BBQ, or slightly spicy Asian food.
Cheers !

La bière qui a fait connaitre la Nébuleuse.

Un nez envoûtant, une belle couleur cuivrée pour un style peu commun originaire de Californie preuve de l'ouverture des brasseurs et de l’effervescence brassicole actuelle. 
Au goût, cette bière qui se veut désaltérante, affiche une certaine rondeur et des notes d'agrumes typiques du Simcoe, le houblon utilisé. Elle est marquée par une amertume rafraîchissante mais pas excessive.

Une jolie porte d'entrée aux bières houblonnées très appréciées des brasseurs de la Nébuleuse qui réussissent le pari d'une bière désaltérante et accessible certes, mais avec un certain caractère qui leur est propre. Bien vu !

Elle s'accompagnera très bien avec vos pizzas, burgers, grillades ou alors un plat asiatique délicatement relevé.

Santé !
Where to buy La Nebuleuse: Our pick is La Mise En Bière, where you can ogle over 400 other beers from around the world as well

Visit their website for more information or follow them on Facebook.

Pour plus d’informations, visite leur site ou suis-les sur Facebook.

Photography by Gabriel Garcia Marengo

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Meet the Makers: Discovering Lausanne's Brewery Belt

We are extremely excited to start a series this autumn called Meet the Makers, where we will highlight the creative and entrepreneurial minds in and around Lausanne--those who are making exceptional things with their very own hands.

Nous sommes très heureux de commencer cet automne une série appelée Meet the Makers durant laquelle nous mettrons l'accent sur les esprits créatifs et d'entreprise dans et autour de Lausanne; ceux qui créent des choses exceptionnelles de leurs propres mains! 

We will kick off our series with one of our favorite topics: beer. We've noticed that local craft beer is finally starting to become appreciated, and we want to meet those who are at the forefront of making these incredible beers in and around Lausanne. We are partnering up with our friends at La Mise En Bière with a goal to bridge the gap between the drinker and the maker. So join us as we take a tour of Lausanne's 'brewery belt'--we hope you'll make some fun discoveries along with us!

Nous allons commencer notre série par l'un de nos sujets préférés: la bière! Nous avons remarqué que la bière artisanale locale a finalement commencé à être appréciée et nous voulons rencontrer ceux qui sont au premier plan de ces bières incroyables! Nos amis de La Mise en Bière seront nos partenaires dans notre quête visant à rapprocher le client et l'artisan. Viens te joindre à nous pour ce tour des brasseries de Lausanne qui, nous l'espérons, nous réservera de belles surprises!

Photography and graphic design by Gabriel Garcia Marengo

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fall Trends 2014 with The Liberty Shop

We were so excited to have a peek into The Liberty Shop's fall 2014 collection! Gina has curated some incredible pieces, here are some favorites we'd like to share:

Le Mont St Michel Jumper/Sweater // Sessun Skirt
We fell in love with the rich burgundy color of the skirt and the pattern of the sweater. An easy outfit that can be worn casually with sneakers or dressed up with a pair of heels or patent leather flats.

American Vintage Dress
Flattering, simple, and easily accessorized (we love it belted too). This dress is one that we foresee being a staple in our closets and could make the transition into winter with some tights and a cardigan.

Le Mont St Michel Skirt // Sessun Cardigan // GKERO Tee 
Who knew a poodle skirt could be so fun? We honestly didn't think this long skirt would flatter such a petite (5 feet 4 inches) frame, but this was one of our favorite outfits! We also had fun browsing through G. Kero's playful t-shirts and sweaters--the retro/vintage prints add a bit of flair to any outfit.

Sessun Jacket // American Vintage Dress
First of all, this dress should be illegal. It literally feels like you aren't wearing anything at all--yes, it's that soft. We love it paired with this Sessun jacket--an incredibly warm, functional, and relaxed take on the classic peacoat (we love the lining and the hood!).

Pascale Cornu Top
Look out for this young Swiss (Lausannoise nonetheless!) designer whose bold yet tasteful art deco prints are hard not to fall in love with. You can find a selection of her newest collection only at The Liberty Shop in Lausanne, or at Globus in Geneva. 

Thanks to Gina at The Liberty Shop for letting us play dress up with her gorgeous fall collection! Go check out her other looks from brands like Orla Kiely and Marimekko. What are some fall trends you're looking forward to? 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Where to Eat in Lausanne: Street Kitchen

If you've spent any time in or around Place de la Riponne this summer, you would have noticed the influx of food trucks and stands there every Tuesday and Thursday. And if you've walked past Street Kitchen, a food stand started by Toni and Emma--a husband and wife duo, the first item on their menu would definitely had made you do a double-take...it's called The Skinny Bitch and it's freakin delicious. We had the pleasure of trying out a few items on their menu recently and couldn't think more highly of their melange of different flavors and fresh ingredients. 

We asked Emma, the co-founder and chef, a few questions about Street Kitchen and thought we'd share her answers with you:
What inspired you to start Street Kitchen?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs so starting my own business was always something I wanted to do. We felt there was definitely a gap in the market here for great, reasonably priced food that was made with respect for the ingredients, and food that we loved to eat but couldn’t find here. We also wanted to create a business that was edgy and fun. When the opportunity at la Riponne arose we decided to give it a try and see if we were on the right track.

What kinds of food can we expect to discover at your food stand?
The name 'Street Kitchen' is all about what we do; we do street food from around the globe but we put our signature twist on it. We don’t like to use the word fusion too much but in a sense we like to change up a classic recipe with a foreign ingredient. We buy locally as much as possible as well as bio. Our food may be served up fast but it is by no means unhealthy; our salads are packed with fresh veg and grains, we have nothing processed, our meat is local and was once happy, and everything is made by us fresh on the day.  We are very interested in supporting sustainable farming and are in the process of trying to find small local farmers to work with to ensure our produce is free from pesticides, antibiotics, and that the animals we eat were reared as nature intended. We love food with big bold flavors so you can expect to find anything from Lebanese, Asian, Indian to typical dishes like the all rounder New York style steak sandwich and not to forget a little South African thrown in for good measure.

Where do your inspirations for recipes come from?
Our inspiration comes from all over, we love to get our creative juices flowing and we are constantly testing new recipes. We love to go down to the market and make dishes up as we go depending on the produce they have on offer that day. And of course the seasons play a big part. Travelling especially to countries that pride themselves on their street food is massive inspiration and then seeing how we can adapt a dish.

What’s been the most popular dish?
The most popular has definitely been The Skinny Bitch and we have been unable to take it off the menu as of yet, but we have had great feedback on all our dishes.  We try change up the menu every few weeks, or just add new dishes to see how they do. We just added our Bombay Bicycle which is doing very well; its a local potato and purple kale curry, topped with goats milk yoghurt, but we serve it Korean style in a lettuce wrap topped with pickled onions and green chili.

What are your hopes for Street Kitchen’s future?
We hope to be chosen to continue the la Riponne market over the winter and in between this we are growing our catering side of the business which is going quite well.  We are also looking into our own truck for the colder months. We couldn’t be happier doing what we love and as long as people are smiling after they have eaten at our stand or event that just makes it all more worthwhile. We believe home is not where you sleep it's where you stand and we hope to be standing with Street Kitchen for a long time to come.

Thank you so much to Emma and Toni for giving us a look inside Street Kitchen! We look forward to trying more of your innovative and delicious dishes--especially when we get to order them by their fun  names ;-)

Street Kitchen
Place de la Riponne
Tuesdays & Thursdays, 11:40am-3pm

Follow them on Facebook!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...