At the entrance to the fairly new Wankdorf City neighbourhood, there’s a small, listed house amidst large buildings such as the SBB headquarters or the postal service: the old weigh house of Bern’s former slaughterhouse complex. It was carefully restored and now houses the restaurant Freibank Speis & Trank. You can still feel the history of the place, connected with the present through the menu choices and the deliberate name: In the past, the so-called Freibank at the slaughterhouse would handle and sell meat that came from non-ordinary slaughters. This made it possible to purchase meat that was considered of lesser value – but was of excellent quality – at a minimal price.
Using all parts of slaughtered animals is still Freibank’s policy today, in order to make guests more aware of the use and value of less popular cuts. Did you know that they make up the majority of the animal, and the more noble cuts such as roast beef amount to only 30 percent? With the right techniques and preparation and a spoonful of creativity, these cuts are turned into delicious treats – move over, tenderloin and rib-eye steak.
There’s not a lot on the menu, but it’s all delicious. The lunch menu changes once or twice a week and is first come, first served. The head chef at Freibank puts a twist on old classics such as Beef Stroganoff and adds a new, personal touch. The restaurant is suited for vegetarians, too – how about a burger made of Epsach lentils on apple chutney, for example?
Many different events take place at Freibank throughout the year, for example the “Freibank Tischete”, which is all about Switzerland’s culinary heritage, or the “Metzgete”, where a farmer gives insight into his work during a four-course meal. A list of current events can be found on the Freibank homepage.
Apart from food and drink, the Freibank also offers ideal spaces for company events. The attic seats 20 (or 30 standing), making it the perfect choice for small-scale team events as well as meetings, seminars, and workshops. On warm days, the outdoor Westterrasse (holds 50 seated or 120 standing) is the best location for your event. There’s also the option (upon request) of joining the chef in the kitchen, where you will learn all about the meals you will help prepare and the ingredients used. On Saturdays and Sundays, the Freibank can be rented for parties.
Opening hours Mon–Fr 11:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m.
Sat–Sun available for private events
(Opening hours can be adapted upon request)
Capacity inside: 50 seated or 80 standing
On the terrace (weather dependent): 65 seated or 120 standing