Salt & Silver standing in the kitchen.
More than just a trend

Salt & Silver: creative cuisine with a sustainable approach

More than just a trend

Salt & Silver: creative cuisine with a sustainable approach

Johannes Riffelmacher and Thomas Kosikowski have built up a brand over the last few years as the duo “Salt & Silver”. They are known for unusual food concepts, adventurous travel books and cookbooks, and innovative ideas. During a forest walk in Ahrensburg in North Germany, they show how they integrate sustainability into their company – and conjure up an unusual menu from an abundance of freshly gathered regional ingredients. But they also know that a sustainable future only works with a holistic approach. They are pinning their hopes on innovative concepts such as the ID. Buzz Cargo.

Mobility has always been a large part of their lives. After all, anyone who names travel, surfing and cooking as their passion depends on mobility. In 2014, Thomas Kosikowski and Johannes Riffelmacher, also known as Cozy and Jo, decided to realise these passions in an adventure. So they travelled to South America for 18 months with the aim of documenting the culture of the countries. And when Cozy and Jo talk about regional culture, they mainly mean the culinary culture they found in each place they visited.

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Cooking in nature gives you a 360-degree experience for all your senses.
Thomas Kosikowski, Salt & Silver

They strolled through markets in Mexico, cooked after a long day of surfing with locals on the beach, and lived with a family in the Peruvian jungle. They fished for piranhas for dinner, travelled in dugout canoes and marvelled at life close to nature on the Galapagos Islands. It was a project by two friends, an adventure from which, today, a successful company has grown: Salt & Silver. With countless memories, thousands of followers on social media and new recipes, Cozy and Jo finally returned to Germany – with business ideas.

Change of perspective: from Latin America to the North Sea

After two travel cookbooks about Latin American street food, setting up a catering service and opening two restaurants, Salt & Silver are now about to reinvent their food concept. After all, over the years the adventurers have become real entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs who have long been using sustainable ingredients and who cultivate vegetable and herb varieties in their “Garden of Eden” in order to keep their carbon footprint low.

For them, regional food is a major component of a sustainable future. During a forest walk in Ahrensburg in North Germany, they show how it works. “Previously, we looked for our ideas and recipes all over the world; today we find them nearby”, says Jo and turns to his fresh harvest of mushrooms and herbs. Salt & Silver is currently processing the freshly collected ingredients at an old farm. Onions and forest mushrooms sizzle in the pan, the fresh bread is prepared, chives are chopped and there is an odour of freshly grated cheese. “Cooking in the place where you find your ingredients is an experience for all your senses.” The boys bite with pleasure into the mushroom bread with Parmesan. “Sometimes, the best things are easy and simple.”

It’s a great experience to find new ingredients growing right in front of our door.”
Johannes Riffelmacher, Salt & Silver

What drives the duo is a change in perspective for a sustainable future. This approach is the focus of their next project, “Salt & Silver am Meer” – a climate-neutral restaurant in St. Peter Ording on the North Sea. Instead of travelling around the world looking for new recipe ideas, Salt & Silver work with local farmers, fisheries and market gardens, and only offer regional dishes. Or, as they say: “We will present the best, down-to-earth ingredients with no frills but full of taste and finesse.”

Jo walks in the forest with a basket and looks for specialities.

Sustainable food concept meets the ID. Buzz Cargo

Back from their forest walk, Cozy and Jo provide a little foretaste in their Hamburg restaurant, the Salt & Silver headquarters. It’s a typical picture for them: while the scent of the finely prepared vegetables fills the room, the duo fillet fresh fish and philosophise about their carbon-neutral future. Gradually, numerous delicacies, prepared from sustainable products, take over the lovingly decorated table: colourful salads, finely marinated fish dishes and creatively composed vegetable variations – their creations resemble genuine works of art, with great attention to detail.

But in their opinion, in order to be successful in future as well, it takes more than regional ingredients. “Of course, it’s also about transporting our ingredients for our restaurant,” says Cozy. “This is where the carbon footprint is an important issue. A large part of our job is involved in working out how we, as restaurant owners, can make our contribution.” In this regard, for them the ID. Buzz Cargo is the perfect vehicle for also switching the supply chain over to sustainable operation. An innovative, large-scale interior concept, compact exterior dimensions and fully electrically powered: “It’s inspiring”, says Cozy. “Technologies such as the ID. Buzz Cargo will push the boundaries.”

Whether it's for their catering service or their restaurants, in vehicles such as the ID. Buzz Cargo, Cozy and Jo see a further, fundamental approach to a solution enabling them to work sustainably in a holistic manner. It will form one of the final components in their new invention: running on carbon-neutral green electricity, it will deliver sustainable ingredients from the region to their climate-neutral restaurant. That’s a good reason for Cozy to look with confidence towards the future. “I live the best lifestyle I could choose”, he says as they round off the evening at the Salt & Silver headquarters. “I hope that will remain forever.”

New concepts such as the ID. Buzz Cargo give us hope for the future.”
Thomas Kosikowski, Salt & Silver

The regional menu: Cuisine from regional ingredients

Cozy and Jo used to travel around the world to get inspiration – today they find ingredients and recipe ideas in their surrounding region. They go out searching, allow nature to inspire them and create a new menu from the ingredients collected. The result is not only particularly sustainable and delicious, but also attractive to look at. And if your mouth is already watering at the pictures, follow the recipe collection. Good luck and bon appétit!

Personal details

Johannes Riffelmacher and Thomas Kosikowski are the founders of Salt & Silver, run two restaurants and a catering service in Hamburg, and are the authors of two cookbooks. The next restaurant will soon be opening in St. Peter Ording.

https://saltandsilver.deOpens an external link

https://www.instagram.com/saltandsilverOpens an external link

Portrait of Johannes Riffelmacher and Thomas Kosikowski.

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