Chef Zizi Hattab : innovating with plant-based cuisine
- Plant Based cooking cheffe in Zurich
- 1 Star chef in Kle restaurant
- 1 Green star in Dar restaurant
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The native Spaniard and rising star chef, Zizi Hattab has burst into the gastronomic scene in Switzerland and Worldwide with her plant-based fine-dining cuisine.
Since the opening of the first restaurant KLE in January 2020, the former engineer has collected numerous awards, including a Michelin Star in 2022, and is continuously featured in national and international media channels. Her 2nd restaurant DAR was listed on the “opening venues to watch” by The 50 Best magazine shortly after the announcement of its opening. In 2022, it has been awarded a Green Michelin Star.
Born in Spain & daughter of Moroccan immigrants, Zizi Hattab has been in multicultural environments since an early age. She grew up in a small town by the Mediterranean coast exposed to the gastronomic wonders of a Spanish fishing town while simultaneously l home, she would help her parents prepare traditional Moroccan tajin or couscous for a weekend’s guest visit.
She turned 18 and moved to vibrant Barcelona to study engineering. She would find time to host small dinners at her students’ dorm in between studying and nights out with friends discovering the newest tapas places.
Right after her studies, Zizi Hattab moved to Switzerland. She was set: a good 8-to-5 corporate Engineer job, a strong career path and a good salary. But her passion for cooking wouldn’t stop growing. Every other weekend she would invite friends to endless multi-course meals at her tiny apartment. Her love for cuisine kept growing.
Without any previous professional experience she boldly wrote to the best chef in Switzerland asking for an internship at his world-acclaimed restaurant Schloss Schauenstein. Captured by her passion, Andreas Caminada accepted her application.
This was the start to Zizi’s career in the kitchen. After her stage with Andreas she set off for more experience but not before the chef made her sign a note guaranteeing that if she returned to Switzerland she would work with him again. She then trained with some of the best chefs in the world: in Italy, and The Roca Brothers in Spain and Dan Barber in New York. It was after the latter when she took over the kitchen of one of the best restaurants in NYC, Enrique Olvera’s Cosme as executive sous-chef. After 2 years of serving more than 300 guests a night 7 days a week in one of the most demanding cities in the world, it was time for Zizi to start a new chapter in her life.
In 2019 she returned to Zurich to prepare the opening of her first restaurant, KLE. After careful consideration she made her first huge decision as a chef: her food and her own diet would be exclusively plant-based. The butter, cream, rich meaty stocks and proteins she had come to rely on as a chef, the foundations of much of her cooking career would no longer be available. Her friends, family, previous guests, and the chefs she trained with all questioned her decision. “Your first restaurant as a plant-based concept?” But Zizi had planned it precisely, the engineer never really leaves you. She understood that planet and people are best impacted by a plant-based diet and that food is one of the best connectors and communicators we have.
Through innovating with plant-based cuisine, applying her technique and teachings to developing new, exciting and delicious plant-based dishes, Zizi Hattab wants to inspire people to think differently about what they eat. It’s this simple mission that drives her, her team and her guests.
Despite opening 8 weeks before Covid, KLE has consistently impressed guests and critics alike. A short month after opening she was awarded Gault&Millau . Zizi would finish 2020 recognized as Chef of the Year by Gault&Millau and KLE became the first plant-based restaurant in Switzerland to receive the green Michelin star– a mark that signifies Zizi and her team’s approach to sustainable cooking. In 2022, KLE has received a Michelin star. KLE offers a multi-course tasting menu with a creative focus on plant-based cooking. Zizi’s wide training and knowledge are on display with global gastronomy making up a large part of the menu.