Alimentarium – Nestlé’s Food Museum

As I wrote in yesterday’s post, I spent the morning yesterday in Vevey, a gorgeous town in Switzerland’s French-speaking region. And I spent most of that time at the Alimentarium, a food museum founded in 1985 by the Swiss consumer goods company Nestlé, which has its international headquarters in Vevey.

Probably the first thing everyone takes a picture of when arriving at the museum’s location is the statue of Charlie Chaplin right in front of it. The English film director and actor spent 25 years in the region.

Charlie Chaplin

Charlie Chaplin

The museum has a permanent, interactive exhibition on four themes: Cooking, Eating, Purchasing, and Digesting. All four sections are quite big and address a wide variety of topics: e.g., how tableware evolved (eating), what techniques were used in the past to preserve milk (cooking), how our bodies absorb nutrients (digesting), what route food products take before ending up on supermarket shelves (purchasing). One could easily spend a couple of hours in each section!

IMG_7573

Orange squeezer

IMG_7574

The food pyramid

IMG_7557

Hot-dog cart in use in NYC until 2001

IMG_7554

Wood-burning stove, Zurich, 1850

IMG_7553

Kitchen utensils

The section I enjoyed most was the one on digesting. I learned quite a few interesting facts in that section. See the true-or-false questions below!

Then there is also an area in the museum dedicated to the history of the founding company, Nestlé, showcasing past advertising posters and product packages.

IMG_7575

There is currently a temporary exhibition titled Collectionez-moi where you can discover eleven unusual collections of food objects: sardine tins, Coca-Cola bottles, sachets of sugar, sweets, shopping lists, etc. If you visit Vevey before February 24, 2013, you should definitely check it out!

Alimentarium, Vevey

Collection of Pierre Skira

IMG_7700

Collection of Kühle Hopper

The museum’s restaurant, La Verrière, serves a Discovery Meal everyday from noon to 1:30 p.m. When I visited yesterday, the meal’s theme was “Russian Christmas” and – sadly for me! – was not suitable for vegetarians. The waitress did offer to substitute the chicken and the beef with more vegetables, but I feared that wouldn’t placate my hunger(!) and decided to go instead for a pizza elsewhere. The upcoming meal theme (Jan 15 – Mar 10, 2013) is “Collectionez-moi… Pasta”, so I might go back to check that out!

IMG_7572

La Verrière

Besides its permanent and temporary exhibitions, the museum also offers cookery workshops, children activities, and other food-related activities. This is definitely a place I recommend visiting and spending a few hours at, learning lots about food and nutrition – and not only for kids!

****************************

True or false? 

  • Asparagus is slimming…
  • Never drink cold water with cheese fondue…
  • Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, dinner like a pauper…

Do you know the answers to these questions? If you don’t, no worries – I’ll reveal the answers in a future blog post! 😉

7 responses to “Alimentarium – Nestlé’s Food Museum

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s