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Switzerland Restaurants

Corvatsch Mountain
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7500
Tel: 41 81 828 86 30

This mountain hut restaurant is stuffed with cowbells, antlers, and other assorted alpine antiques. Dorigo, the charismatic owner, is on hand to tell wildly improbable stories of how he either shot or ran over your lunch in his Range Rover. Try polenta with Gorgonzola and his carpaccio of red deer with truffle oil and wild mushrooms.

Open December through mid-April. Call ahead for hours.

Back Und Brau
Heinrichstrasse 267
Tel: 44 271 1030

In hip Zurich West is this half-designer, half-homey, all-Swiss new institution—a kind of mega-Pain Quotidien serving beer instead of soup. The name means "Bake and Brew," and that's exactly what they do. In an effort to redress the heartless, big-business side of beer and the fastness of food, here's a microbrewery-pub-restaurant-bakery that manages to be almost all things to almost all people—low-carb dieters excepted. The space is fabulous: illuminated walkways set into wooden floors with big iron-framed windows, the whole thing bathed in cobalt-blue light. The bakery turns out savory pastries with spinach and feta; chicken and mushroom pies; pizzas; quiches; loaves of peasant bread baked with a joint of ham inside and sliced; filled bagels and baguettes. The third thing they specialize in here is coffee, but "Back, Brau, und Kaffee" wouldn't sound so good.

Blinde Kuh
Mühlebachstrasse 148
Tel: 44 421 5050

An only-in-Zurich (okay, and also in Basel) experience: eating in the dark. Really, really dark. Pitch black. This isn't all gimmick; it's to enable us to gain an insight into the world of the blind, as well as to savor your food in a new way. Two thirds of the staff here is not sighted (though the chef can see), and they lead you carefully, gently, and with a necessary sense of humor through what most people find to be a pretty mind-blowing evening. Menus change weekly and are seasonal, simple, and good. People wonder: Are the bathrooms pitch black? And how do you pay in the dark? The answers: no, and you don't. You need to reserve weeks in advance for weekends; midweek is not quite so bad. "Blind Cow" is named after the German blindman's buff, by the way.

Chesa Veglia
2 Via Veglia
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7500
Tel: 41 81 837 28 00

A satellite of the Badrutt's Palace Hotel complex, Chesa Veglia is a 1658 chalet farmhouse hideaway a few minutes' stroll from the central behemoth. It consists of three restaurants in a labyrinth of rooms full of ancient beams and decorated with alpine eclectica. The Patrizier Stuben dining room serves Swiss and international dishes (on a terrace in the summertime). The laid-back Heuboden is a pizzeria and pasta joint. The highlight is Chadafö, an elegant alpine room which concentrates on French cuisine and grilled meats with a backdrop of tinkling piano music. Rack of lamb cooked with fresh local herbs is a specialty here. Of course, it wouldn't be St. Moritz (or Badrutt's) if there weren't a fourth dining room, Club Privé, operated strictly as a private club and open only to appointed lifetime members.

Open daily 6 to 11 pm, late June through mid-September and early December through early April.

El Paradiso
Corviglia Mountain
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7500
Tel: 41 81 833 40 02

El Paradiso restaurant has been entirely refurbished in lavish style with candelabra on the open-air bar, sheepskin-covered benches, and a montage of magnums of Champagne on the terrace (it's a chic spot for a mid-morning glass of bubbly with a view across the Engadine Valley.) Inside, the restaurant specializes in Swiss mountain fare and creative pastas at decent prices (by St Moritz standards). Try the tagliatelle with white truffles or the lobster spaghetti.

Open December through April. Call ahead for hours.

8 Via Maistra
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7500
Tel: 41 81 833 38 64

Hanselmann has been a fixture at the center of Dorf for what feels like forever. It's more of an après-ski café than a restaurant, with mouth-watering homemade cakes such as rich sachertorte or feather-light apfelstrudel. If you shop rather than ski, this is where you rest between runs on your credit card. As well as lunch, it also serves early supper before closing at 7 pm.

Open daily 7:30 am to 7 pm.

Haus Hiltl
28 Sihlstrasse
Switzerland 8001
Tel: 41 44 227 70 00

A leafy anomaly in a meat-and-potatoes city, the vegetarian Haus Hiltl restaurant dates back to 1898, when one Ambrosium Hiltl decided rösti potatoes and Spaetzle just weren't enough. Renovated since then, the cavernous restaurant is a neo-Baroque showpiece hung with cut-glass chandeliers and crowded with mismatched chairs that run from Victorian to Bauhaus. But it's the snaking smorgasbord's global encyclopedia of vegetarian dishes that takes literal center stage. Load up as many times as you like on dishes such as chestnut soup, leek salad, apple and pepper goulash, Thai curry, sweet corn cake, barley risotto, porcini ragoût, Gorgonzola polenta, couscous Marrakech, and zucchini with saffron sauce. The mango ice cream makes for a crucial palate cleanser after all that border-hopping roughage, and a refreshing end to one of the best deals (about $44 dollars per person for a meal that lasts all day) in a very pricey town.—Raphael Kadushin

Open Mondays through Thursdays 6 am to midnight, Sundays 8 am to midnight, and Fridays and Saturdays 6 am until late.

Jöhri's Talvo
15 Via Gunels
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7512
Tel: 41 81 833 44 55

Squirreled away in the suburban hamlet of Champfèr, within the bright, woodsy interiors of a 17th-century Graubünden house, Roland and Brigitte Jöhri have created an unpretentious fine-dining haven. You don't garner two Michelin stars by just serving cheesy Swiss mountain fare, so in addition to traditional local dishes there are plenty of European classics, from bouillabaisse to paella, as well as some delicious preparations of fresh fish (impressive considering how far from the sea St. Moritz is). Book ahead for this one—lunchtime is best, when the set-price menus ring in around $100.

Open Tuesdays through Saturdays noon to 10 pm, July through mid-September and mid-December through March.

Ramistrasse 4
Tel: 44 251 6669

For decades this old-fashioned brasserie of a place has hosted visiting and resident stars and dignitaries—one suspects more because of what's on the walls than what's on the plates. Not that the latter is bad—it's a fine place to try the local dishes, and the chocolate mousse is meant to be the best for miles; it's just hard to concentrate on your fork with a Picasso, Chagall, Matisse, or Miró staring down at you. For a lighter art fix, belly up to the absolutely stunning bar, an extravagantly curvaceous redwood landscape by Robert Haussmann with bronze lamps by Diego and Alberto Giacometti.

Lasalle Restaurant
Schiffbaustrasse 4
Tel: 44 258 7071

This cool glass box inside the Schiffbauhaus—the old shipyard building that's an entire neighborhood-within-a-neighborhood in hip Zurich West—is not just for design fiends, though they certainly helped put it on the map. The food is serious, Italianate, and fish-centric (vitello tonnato; broiled giant shrimp with green curry), but there's also plenty for carnivores (including horsemeat—popular round here—in port wine jus) and for vegetarians. Good wine and long cocktail lists, a cigar menu, and a 25-foot-long communal table help keep the pretensions down and the gemütlichkeit up.

Mathis Food Affairs
Corviglia Mountain
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7500
Tel: 41 81 833 6355

Mathis is a collection of lunch-only restaurants owned and run by St. Moritz's celebrity chef, Reto Mathis. They range from a snowboarders' refueling station with hot dogs and wok specials, to the unique La Marmite which claims to sell more caviar and truffles than any other restaurant in the world during the February high season (although you wouldn't know it from the exterior, a garish yellow-painted concrete building adjoining the lift station.) Book well in advance for La Marmite.

Open daily 8 am to 4 pm, December through April.

Badrutt's Palace Hotel
27 Via Serlas
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7500
Tel: 41 81 837 28 23

Nobu is Badrutt's attempt to reclaim a younger clientele from the Kempinski. Though the dining room is still a Belle Epoque museum piece, the kitchen employs Nobu Matsuhisa's patented fusion of Peruvian and Japanese traditions (except in summer, when the space is used for Le Relais breakfast and events). Whatever you think of the victuals, Nobu continues to be the place in St. Moritz to people-watch.

Open daily 7:30 to 11 pm, mid-December through mid-March.

Restaurant Engiadina
2 Plazza della Scoula
St. Moritz
Switzerland CH-7500
Tel: 41 81 833 32 65

Located in the center of Dorf village, Restaurant Engiadina is an old-fashioned family dining room with paneled interiors, alpine touches, and no room for the creative or the nouvelle on its menu. The kitchen excels at hearty, well-priced, well-prepared, and time-tested favorites such as fondue (both cheese and champagne), grilled steaks, carpaccio, and typical French dishes like snails in garlic butter.

Open Mondays through Saturdays noon to 2 pm and 6 to 10 pm.

Restaurant Mesa
Weinbergstrasse 75
Tel: 44 321 7575

Young chef Chris Trewer recently left the Eden au Roc, for whom he'd won a pair of Michelin stars, to open this spare, elegant place with its textured golden cork walls, dark wood floor, and black and cream upholstered chairs. The plan is simple: everything fresh. The kitchen's style is kind of Southern Italy meets Southern Germany, with an emphasis on seasonal ingredients: Fish are filleted at table; risottos are cooked to order; in summer there might be iced cucumber soup with shellfish and rack of lamb with gnocchi and ratatouille; fall features game and truffles. Always there's house-baked focaccia and grissini; crème brûlée, and panna cotta. In summer, try for one of the tables in the cute garden.

Ankerstrasse 120
Tel: 44 241 0700

A current hot spot thanks to owner Andy Stutz, locally renowned for his Seidenhaus Fabric Frontline, source of Switzerland' sweetest silks. The wild decor doesn't hurt either—the room is dominated by an installation featuring thousands of mirror fragments by multimedia artist Ugo Rondinone. Food is scrupulously fresh—updated versions of traditional bourgeois dishes that change constantly. And if you don't like what's on the menu, they'll try to cook whatever you want.

32 Rämistrasse
Switzerland 8001
Tel: 41 44 262 04 44

This combination deli-restaurant offers a stylish take on traditional Swiss cuisine that emphasizes the ripest locally sourced harvest. The approach is evident in the ground-floor deli, where farm-fresh cheeses and just-baked crusty breads pose in long display cases, and upstairs in the whitewashed dining room, which serves a zealously foraged menu of stalwart Swiss dishes. The seasonal menu may include a Lake Constance pike perch, or a classic Gschnätzlets that features sliced local veal, full cream from a regional dairy, and freshly picked mushrooms. Even the desserts exude a farm-to-table appeal; the chocolate cake folds in white flour from an Emmental mill. The added bonus to all this busy harvesting: In a town where dinner can mean uptown prices, the commendably reasonable tab here (entrées can be had for around $34) seems positively pastoral.—Raphael Kadushin

Deli open Mondays through Fridays 7:30 am to 11 pm, Saturdays and Sundays 9:30 am to 11 pm.

Restaurant open Sundays through Fridays 11:30 am to 2 pm and 6 to 11:30 pm, Saturdays 6 to 11:30 pm.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.