Vegan and vegetarian dinner at the vegetarian fine dining restaurant Amano verde at Radisson Blu Media Harbor, Dusseldorf

Fine Dining and vegan are not necessarily two words that appear regularly in the same sentence. Vegan is - even if the vegans are not so happy to hear that - an absolute trend topic, but not in the high class area. Why not? It has long since been recognized by everyone that the subject of veganism is not a fluke that is practiced by the generation "linen trousers and health slippers" in the quiet little room. On the contrary, this attitude to life has long been acceptable and socially accepted. Smoked tofu and almond paste are no longer hard to find special ingredients, but on everyone's lips. Just like green smoothies and soy bolognese. Only the topic just did not necessarily arrive in the big hotels and restaurants. Until now.

In Düsseldorf's media harbor lies a chic Radisson Blu Hotel with attached hotel restaurant. Until a month ago, this was still a very classic restaurant with scallops and beef fillet on the menu. But since the beginning of June, everything is different: Amano Verde is the new name, the card purely vegetarian and mainly even vegan, often lactose- or gluten-free. Chef Dennis Riesen , who has been a convinced vegan for one year, has fulfilled his dream of a professional career. On a small, changing menu, he now cooks vegan lukewarm lentil salad on orange chorizo ​​or vegan cookies with smoked tofu instead of steak and schnitzel. There are both dishes completely without substitutes as well as those with vegan king prawns, Zurich Geschnetzeltem from soy or just tofu. This is likely to affect both the taste of meat eaters and vegetarians or vegans.

But vegan alone is not all: the eggs for the vegetarian dishes come from a nearby farm, including fruit and vegetables come primarily from the region. The organization of suitable suppliers in a large hotel chain is not so easy, but Dennis Giant always strives to get the best products for his dishes.

I'm not a vegetarian myself, but I actually eat mostly vegetarian - the is also reflected in my published recipes here. That's why I am anything but averse to this concept and was very happy when I was invited to the Amano Verde together with the bloggers Christina von Feines Gemüse, Mareike von Girlontravel and Samira vom Kochwelt-Blog for the vegetarian-vegan dinner. p>

Diamond Rosé for aperitif

 Fingerfood: Avocado Crostini

After an aperitif with Diamond Rosé and a blind tasting of Avocado-Crostini , which is actually blind Egg salad sandwiches remembered, we were allowed to move to the beautiful terrace for dinner. On the hottest day of the year so far, it was able to stand it up well under large umbrellas and in light winds. Dennis Riesen did not hesitate to tune us to the menu and sit down with us every step of the way to tell us something about each dish and answer all our questions. For the individual courses, there were two matching wines, where I have at least sipped.Directly my absolute favorite, this combination of smoky-mild pepper with sugar crust!

 Intermediate: sweet potato soup with sesame seeds and apple chip (vegan)
This was followed by another equally delicious, vegan Sweet Potato Soup with Sesame and Apple Chip .
Dennis Riesen, Executive Chef at Amano Verde mixes a fresh green smoothie on the Radisson Blu Media Harbor terrace

In between, we were able to make a fresh Green Smoothie mix and enjoy.

Before the main course we were allowed to take a look at the hotel kitchen and the two look over the shoulder of awesome cooks. With a bistro area and hotel room service offering classic hotel food such as club sandwiches, there are several vegan and non-veg food areas. Steak and tofu do not end up in the same pan or in the same oven and have their own separate areas in the cold store. Here are really professionals at work who really meet all the needs of their various guests in the best possible way.

 A look behind the scenes: In the kitchen of the Amano Verde the vegan main dish is prepared: vegan king prawns

The main dish We were served in the restaurant area: the design is very classy and timeless and the plate met exactly these demands of fine dining. There was a perfectly balanced creamy mango risotto with roasted sunflower seeds and vegan shrimp . The dish is completely vegan and we learned about developing the perfect risotto consistency with vegan cheese and vegan butter. The result is really impressive - and I say that as an absolute risotto fan with plenty of butter and Parmesan. I do not like prawns in "real" either, but of course I tried the vegan counterpart and have to say that the taste and consistency are deceptively real. The preparation was really great! By the way, these shrimps are made of yams, starch, spices and peppers and are definitely one of the vegan alternatives with the fewest additives. This is a personal topic for me personally - I just can not make friends with a vegan way of life in terms of substitutes. Of course you can completely do without it. However, vegans who live vegan because of animal welfare but do not want to miss out on the taste and use of dairy products depend on replacement products. For me it starts with the fact that I do not like margarine and could not exchange butter for margarine and her long list of ingredients. The same is true for products like soymilk, cream, yoghurt, quark, etc. Previously, I always dismissed the use of tofu sausages or soybreads in meat form as unnecessary spinning, I can now fully understand and understand that people who taste and the appearance may find an adequate substitute in it, if they do not want to give it up altogether.An incredibly exciting and well harmonizing combination and also vegan.

 Dessert: fresh pineapple with mint sugar and green tea sorbet (vegan)

I liked the menu overall very much. It was made up of various dishes from the current, regular menu and has really convinced me. We all got full, nothing was missing and is in no way inferior to a meaty 4-course menu. One notices that those responsible, especially Dennis Riesen, are absolutely behind their concept, they are thinking about it and thus close a gap that has so far separated fine dining and veganism or vegetarianism. The prices do not need to hide and the value for money can really be seen: the most expensive starter costs currently 12.50 €, the shrimp are the most expensive main course with 16.50 €. In my opinion, this is absolutely appropriate.

I would like to thank everyone involved, in particular Simone Mitterer from DigitasLBi AG, Susann Bothe and Thorsten Brückmann from the Radisson Blu Media Harbor Hotel and the Executive Chef Thank you very much Dennis Riesen for the nice invitation and the nice evening. The concept convinced even me as a meat eater and I really would like to recommend Amano Verde for that.