Reikalein, pronounced “rake-a-line”, was born when my friend discovered that sandwiched between “Christine” and “Syrad” hid a Japanese middle name ripe for germanising. Since “-lein” is the suffix to denote diminutive beings, you might have guessed I’m not very big…

I have a healthy appetite though, not only for eating food, but for knowledge relating to all things pertaining to the production and preparation of good, clean and fair food. Yes, that’s right, I am a Slow Food proponent. I find I belong in that sweetspot between hippie and foodie when it comes to my attitude towards what I put in my shopping basket and where I choose to dine.

My upbringing is to blame for my voracious appetite as I was born with two palates – a Japanese one and a broadly European one, having lived in the UK, Italy and Switzerland.

To some my life may seem like a series of detours, but to me it’s an ongoing journey which has brought me to Switzerland for the time being, where being asked ad infinitum whether I can teach people to make sushi sparked my interest in giving anti-sushi workshops.

My overarching theme is teaching people what Japanese people really eat ate (and should go back to eating!) and, in doing so, extolling the virtues of gut-friendly foods, namely in the form of ferments of all different varieties. It’s what I was brought up on and what I know my body to need, having gone through the painful road to recovery from an illness I attribute to my temporary abandonment of such foods. Now, however, I’m the picture of health and have the community in my gut to thank – it never fails to give me a swift reminder when I’ve been negligent.


En guete! Buon appetito! Enjoy!