Menu, Peter & Kohler

Type of object
Technique and material


18.5 x 23 cm

Menus first appeared towards the end of the Middle Ages in the form of a banner and then on paper mainly to inform cooks and waiters of the order of dishes. With the birth of restaurants around 1760, menus began to be prepared for clients and were often set out on a large board in the dining room. Smaller individual menus only appeared in the 19th century. They were decorated with drawings and advertisements for food and helped refine table settings.

Typical examples: Two menus from 1923 detailing the wedding feast for the Pamblanc newlyweds in the Montbenon Casino in Lausanne. One side reveals French gastronomy in a list of dishes popular at that time, such as leg of lamb or Bresse-style chicken, together with illustrations of two Swiss-German castles. The other side carries slogans for the Peter & Kohler brand of Swiss chocolate. Such menus proved an excellent means of advertising.