Eating wonderful food is one of life’s great pleasures, and I believe that healthy, fresh food is everyone’s birthright.

-Margaret Riesen

I was raised in Switzerland among people grew most their own food, and spent a lot of time on my grandparents’ small farm outside of Bern. My grandparents were poor, and yet they ate a diet which today is associated with privilege: fresh organic fruits and vegetables, fresh organic eggs, milk and cream, fresh butter, free-range chicken, wildflower honey.

Read more about Margaret's story below, where she talks about growing up on a small farm, the concept of quality and workmanship, and life's milestones.

On a small farm, everyone pitches in. I understood, as a young child, that our entire day revolved around putting food on the table. The highlight of the day was sitting at the table and enjoying a meal together. Not long after WWII, people were in survival mode, and there weren’t a lot of pleasures to look forward to – but eating good food was, and still is, one of life’s great pleasures. So working to produce the food, and preparing it in the tastiest way possible was a way of saying “I love you, you matter to me.”

There was also the concept of quality and workmanship – being poor was nothing to be ashamed of, but producing something of shoddy quality was. So you always offered your best. When I cater an event, my commitment is to provide the best possible meal within the client’s budget -- it’s my heart and what gives me pleasure. Ingredients are locally sourced, through local vendors, sustainably raised, organic, and of the freshest, highest quality.

In every culture, life’s milestones are celebrated with sharing food in community – it’s the oldest ritual known to humankind. It was when early humans figured out how to gather food in an organized manner that marked the beginning of human societies. It’s always an honor for me to be part of someone’s special celebration, and it gives me pleasure to witness people’s delight when eating food that is delicious and healthy.


For over 20 years The Vegetarian Gourmet has delighted vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike with sustainable, delicious fare at thousands of events.