From regional, seasonal and ecological to waste management and fair payment – many restaurateurs focus on sustainability in their business and are thus meeting the demands of their guests. As the Fridays for Future movement impressively shows: Protecting the environment and the climate is increasingly important for our society and through our way of eating, we make a choice at every meal.
The applications for the METRO Award for Sustainable Gastronomy were as varied as the many ways in which sustainability can be implemented in restaurant businesses. The 7-member jury, consisting of restaurateur Laura Müller, DEHOGA managing director Ingrid Hartges, business editor Nicole Müller of Rheinische Post Düsseldorf, co-founder of the German Sustainability Award Foundation Dr. Florian Wecker and several METRO representatives, had the difficult task of shortlisting their three favourites from a multitude of innovative and sustainable restaurant and catering concepts.
And the winner is ... DingsDums Dumplings
After a 7-minute pitch and an equally long round of questions with the jury and the audience, the 3 finalists then faced the vote of the guests present at the award ceremony in Düsseldorf. The winner was the Berlin restaurant “DingsDums Dumplings” represented by co-founder Mauritz Schröder. The restaurant offers dumplings, which are made from about 80 per cent of rescued food.
With the dumplings, Mauritz Schröder and his colleagues have found an innovative way to turn surplus food into delicious new creations that change daily. Shock freezing the dumplings also makes them long-lasting and versatile – they can be used both in the restaurant itself and at catering events. Not only the guests in Berlin-Kreuzberg are delighted with the sustainable dumplings, but also the jury and guests of the METRO Award for Sustainable Gastronomy were convinced by the creative way of avoiding food waste.
The second prize was awarded to Fischküche Reck. With a passionate pitch, Doris Reck-Hartmann showed that she and her team embody sustainability and that a love of tradition does not mean stagnation. The inn has been owned by the Reck family since 1828. When it comes to sustainability, the tradition-rich establishment not only relies on regional and seasonal cuisine, but also on waste heat from a neighbouring biogas facility for heating, state-of-the-art kitchen equipment, high-quality and durable oak wood tables instead of table linen requiring intensive washing and ironing, as well as digital tools. A wind turbine has already been tested to generate power and anyone who comes to Möhrendorf by electric car or e-bike will soon be able to recharge their batteries at the inn.
Allianz SE company restaurant
The third prize was awarded to Stefan Burghart, who was nominated with the Allianz SE company restaurant. The team there has been working very hard for 10 years to gradually become more sustainable – be it in terms of animal welfare, effective recycling or avoiding waste. This is made possible, for example, thanks to a clever returnable cup system that has saved over 6.5 million disposable cups to date. The jury as well as the audience found this to be groundbreaking and award-worthy.