2 Michelin stars
19 GaultMillau points
“Chef of the Year” (GaultMillau2019)
It is not uncommon for 50 ingredients and more to come together in his dishes. Heiko Nieder, “Chef of the Year 2019”, is one of the very best chefs in Switzerland. Awarded 19 points and two Michelin stars, the Hamburg-born fine dining chef at the luxury hotel The Dolder Grand has been delighting his guests for over a decade at The Restaurant, an art-influenced gourmet retreat with an unimpeded view over Zurich. Heiko Nieder's dishes are unmistakable in taste, composed and served with the precision of a watchmaker right down to the finest detail. His favourite cooking implement earned him the title “The man with the tweezers”. A vivid example is his "Rabbit with garden herbs, pickled mushrooms, miso and green tomato". This creation not only enraptures through its taste, but also as an arrangement on the plate - a visual jewel of beauty, thanks to a miniature summer meadow with flowers and herbs. It reflects Nieder’s culinary DNA, as does his “Breton lobster with strawberries, beetroot, tarragon and mustard” - another crowd-pleaser at The Restaurant. Nieder admits that the effort he always puts in, the visual appearance of the ingredients and the finished dish, as well as the surprising taste combinations "that you don't find everyday", are indeed typical and the driving force behind his cuisine, which must always measure up to his personal yardstick of being "light, fresh, new, different and modern". And the star chef adds with a twinkle in his eye, "so that my life and that of my guests will not become boring." His desserts have elements of surprise, too, such as “Blueberries with celery, cucumber and ginger” - documenting Nieder’s pronounced delight in experimentation.
The 48-year-old Swiss by choice completed his training as a chef at the Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten in Hamburg. Professional stints followed at Le Canard in Hamburg as well as at Hotel zur Traube in Grevenbroich and the restaurant Vau in Berlin. In 2003, while at L'Orquivit in Bonn, Heiko Nieder was discovered by GaultMillau and named “Discovery of the Year”, and only one year later, he received his first Michelin star. At The Dolder Grand, under his management The Restaurant already received 17 GaultMillau points and a Michelin star in its opening year of 2008. A short time later Heiko Nieder received his second star and numerous other awards for his culinary achievements, as well as the "Best German Chef Abroad" award from the 2014 Michelin Guide.