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“important today”: Cornelia Poletto, what is the crisis doing to top-class cuisine?

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Star cuisine in times of inflation – is that possible? Even better than usual, says Germany’s most famous chef, Cornelia Poletto: “We have never been as well booked as we are now.”

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Cornelia Poletto has often asserted herself as the only woman in an absolutely male domain: in the top kitchen. Today she runs her own restaurant in Hamburg, which, despite the crisis and inflation, is fuller than ever: “That’s nice for us top chefs, of course, but it’s bad for the other side.” In January, the aid organization Oxfam released a report showing that extreme wealth and extreme poverty increased simultaneously for the first time in 25 years. In hardly any other industrial nation are assets distributed as unequally as in Germany. This means that nationwide people are queuing in front of the panels. On the other hand, the champagne stocks of luxury brands such as Dom Pérignon or Krug are running out.

Cornelia Poletto about guests in the starred restaurant: “They don’t want to hear any crisis stories from us”

These examples show: food connects, but it also divides. In the 469th episode of the podcast “important today” tells Cornelia Poletto that she also had to register short-time work for the employees in her restaurant in Corona times. Fortunately, the guests are back today, the shop is well stocked. Therefore she also sees a positive aspect for her situation: “The crises we are in right now – inflation and high food prices – that shakes you awake and makes you more aware.” The guests, who can afford her top-quality cuisine, want to be distracted, says Poletto, to put aside their own worries of everyday life: “They don’t want to hear any crisis stories from us. They want to hear how proud I am that I got this crispy fish, that the chicken on my menu was a happy chicken and that the vegetables taste so good because they come from the organic farm around the corner.”

It was not until 2020 that the first vegan restaurant received a Michelin star

The top chef speaks along “important today”Editor Laura Csapó also talks about what nutrition could look like in the future. Many people deal more critically with fish and meat and eat a larger proportion of plants. This is slowly but surely arriving in star cuisine. 2020 has that “Seven Swans” in Frankfurt was the first fully vegan restaurant to receive a star from the Michelin Guide. Cornelia Poletto also serves animal products in her restaurant, but not always the same “star of the court” must be: “Fish and meat should be luxury products. I’m a self-confessed meat and fish eater, but compared to ten years ago I only eat once or twice a week.” Poletto therefore thinks the development towards a more plant-based diet is right, even if she doesn’t believe in the trend towards vegan substitute products: “If I feel like eating wieners and then get wieners glued together from some kind of protein, I find it difficult.”

For more than ten years, Poletto defended the Michelin star, one of the most prestigious awards in gastronomy. She is best known as a TV chef in shows like “The Kitchen Battle” or “Lanz is cooking”. Today she runs the restaurant, among other things “Cornelia Poletto” in Hamburg and its own cooking school.

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Source: Stern

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