A breath of fresh air blows for Russian cuisine through the Northeastern-region of the largest country in the world, and through the kitchen of visionary Igor Grishechkin who tells great tales of Russia’s history with his superb dishes.

From the opulent tsar-area of the Romanoffs, over the Communist Soviet Union, to a tantalising New Russian Cuisine partly shaped through the struggles of embargoes. It’s with pleasure that we present to you CoCoCo – a game changing restaurant built equally on fame, nostalgia, taste and passion.



When we first heard about CoCoCo, it was some years ago when attending a function in Moscow with the conversation being Russia’s future in gastronomy and in which direction it was going.

“You must go to Saint Petersburg”, our Russian friends said. “Things are more creative there. In Moscow, it’s all about the money.”

An interesting statement taken into consideration that we, at the time, had co-created some ten successful events in Moscow during 3-4 years and witnessed how a silent revolution had travelled through many kitchens of the city.

Instead of importing massive amounts of opulent luxury products on a daily basis, local chefs understood that to achieve future culinary greatness, they needed inventions of their own.

A revolution strongly enhanced by recent years of Western embargoes, where chefs across Russia now rediscovered their own culinary history, products and pride, and through limitations found a new core-creativity and blossomed over the years onto the plates of cities such as Moscow and Saint Petersburg alike.



Moreover, our friends spoke of this young woman: a celebrity, fashion icon, patron of the arts and owner of Saint Petersburg’s most coveted restaurant.

Naturally we were intrigued and two years later had the pleasure of spending a couple of days with this unimpressed, yet kind and humble entrepreneur who so effectively puts action behind her words.

It is no wonder that she thus serves as a role model for many Russian women within the country’s growing restaurant industry.

In the food world it’s mostly the chefs that are the ones praised for pioneering or revolutionising what and how we eat. But as often as this is true, some of the unsung heroes are the people who find themselves as financial and front of house creators instead of over the stove.

Igor Grishechkin, Matilda Shnurova and Gaggan Anand.

One of these is Matilda Shnurova, who has pioneered the slow-food way of thinking in Russian cuisine – long before the culinary spotlight started shining on Europe’s giant neighbour in the East. You just didn’t know it.

But for the Russians, Matilda Shnurova needs no further introduction. Well known as half of one of Russia’s super couples – she was married 11 years to Russia’s leading rock star – and over the past 6 years having created one of the most trailblazing restaurants in Saint Petersburg, she has more than made her mark as a talented food entrepreneur.

She has placed the focus firmly on local products and a re-imagined version of traditional Russian cuisine.

Igor Grishechkin is the innovative Executive Chef responsible for creating the fairytale dishes at CoCoCo. But his talent is just 50% of what makes the coveted restaurant so popular – the yin to his yang is undoubtably Matilda.



There are two main pillars to explaining CoCoCo. First and foremost it’s to cook and use local products from farmers in Northern Russia, and secondly to stay true to Russian history and cuisine.

This proved to be a very big challenge in the beginning as the availability was so limited which resulted in expensive prices, and restaurants serving Russian cuisine not being at all popular.

But since opening their doors in 2012, Igor, Matilda and the rest of the team at CoCoCo has attracted the attention of the world press – including the late Anthony Bourdain broadcasting his visit to the restaurant – but even more still, they changed the minds of the Russian population with their endeavour to make Russian cuisine en vogue yet again.

Above: The Fabergé egg immediately evokes emotions of history and the Russian Imperialism by creating a white chocolate version with caviar, sauce hollandaise and gold that recalls the famous Easter jewel that Tsar Alexander III gave to Empress Maria Feodorovna each year.

Below: (created in 2012) a piece of pop art or an edible bite of sweet history of a mother’s favourite, but now broken flowerpot? How about both.

This feature has also been achieved by some noteworthy collaborations in Igor Grishechkin’s kitchen.

Internationally acclaimed chefs Mauro Colagreco of Mirazur in France and Gaggan Anand of Bangkok’s Gaggan (ranked as No. 3 and 5 on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list) have both made guest appearances alongside Igor, with more to come in the future to further introduce Russian cuisine to his peers.

Igor explains that CoCoCo is not about reconstructing Russian recipes handed down by generations, but more about using Russian produce and traditions, giving it a contemporary twist and using modern techniques.

The end result will be narrating a story in history for the guests by evoking Russian culture and emotions. All of which Igor creates by looking back to his own childhood memories.

“It’s like a theatre experience”, he says.


Chef Igor Grishechkin exclusively offers his excellence to lectures, food festivals, consultancy and exclusive dinner parties.

In case of interest or/and press, please contact Kristian Brask Thomsen at:

Bon Vivant Communications is a culinary embassy representing star chefs and restaurants, chateaux and high-end wineries as well as working close together with various luxury hotels, gourmets festivals and bespoke concierges services.

The diplomacy speaks to a strong network of 600 journalists, bloggers and writers, as well as 5000+ global diners around the world.


Hungry for more? Read Royalty of Russian Dining.