In spring, me and three close friends spent 2 nights in Copenhagen celebrating my birthday and sampling as much of the nordic cuisine we could.
Once we had checked in at our hotel SP34 (whose bedroom set I wanted to pack up in to my suitcase) and had a little browse at HAY house we headed out to our first stop, tacos at the Hija de Sanchez stand in Trovehallerne. A unusual choice you might think, but I had been hearing such a hype about the taco stand by Rosio Sanchez, a ex-Noma pastry chef, that I had to check it out and it did not disappoint. If you can find tacos this delicious in Copenhagen, it gives me hope for London’s offerings.
After wolfing down the tacos and a few Modelos our next stop was Aamanns. There we balanced out the tacos with a traditional smørrebrød of tasty rye bread topped with a variety unusual things, and washed down with some dangerously strong rye flavoured snaps.
Dragging ourselves away from the snaps, in our tipsy state, we wandered into the wonderful Botanical Gardens of the Copenhagen University. I recommend visiting pre-lunch as the heat of the gardens mixed with the alcohol has a somewhat delirious effect.
After a self led walking tour around the sites that mostly involved the buildings featured in Borgen, we headed back to the hotel via the overrated Tivola for a little rest before dinner.
Once we had made full use of the hotel’s complementary wine hour we left for dinner. Unfortunately the world famous restaurant Noma that kick started the new nordic food scene was closed. However lucky for us and are wallets, popping up in its kitchen was its new, more casual and more affordable restaurant 108 Copenhagen (Which is now located in a site around the corner from Noma).
At 108 we ate cured squid in bacon broth with mirabelle plums. Little balls of rich braised ox tails with coriander seeds and the unusual addition of fresh pine which was fantastic, a stand out dish for sure. After that it was a salt baked celeriac with hay cheese and then a strange linseeed pie with cauliflower in truffle cream that was intense. Lastly, it was lamb belly with a salad of sorrel. A wonderful dinner and I can’t wait to revisit in their now permanent restaurant.
Once we had finished our drinks and a palette cleansing ice cream, we jumped in an uber back across the city to a cocktail bar called Ruby—A cool bar set out over a few floors. Resisting our food comas, we drank old fashioneds in the cosy lounge downstairs to see in my 26th year, and then finally heading back to the hotel for bed.
The next morning after picking up some pastries we took a train for 30 mins to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, located just outside of town. I can’t stress enough how spectacular this museum is, located in a beautiful setting on the coast with a mix of old and modern architecture and a fine collection of modern art pieces. It’s a must visit for art lovers and I would recommend it to anyone. A wonderful place to start off your birthday.
After travelling back to central Copenhagen we headed to the old meat packing district and uber trendy area Kødbyen to have lunch at appropriately named Kødbyens Fiskebar. A fantastic fish restaurant where we ate oysters, giant bowls of mussels and a mouthwatering dish of fresh scallops, pickled pear and pine nut oil.
After more naps and more complimentary wine we took a taxi out to Amass which was the location of the big birthday dinner. Located by the water in a huge impressive industrial space and surrounded by gardens where a a lot of the kitchens produce is grown.
After having a little exploration of the gardens, the sun was beginning to set as we sat down to our elaborate tasting menu. It was an incredible meal and the most memorable I have ever had. Each course delivered to your table by its chef and each with a different strange and distinct taste complimented by its wine pairing perfectly. A very special dining experience.
Of what we had, my favourite dishes were the pollock with enoki mushrooms, sweet potato and Nasturtium vinegar. The vibrant and beautiful carrots with salted goat cheese, pickled fennel seeds and reduced why. Finally, the rich but comforting lamb breast with cabbage, mussel and parsley.
Seven courses, their respective wine pairings and a few rounds of snaps later we left Amass with our dignity only just intact. Pilling into an uber back to Kødbyen to a fun bar named Bakken where we drank more and then danced from bar to bar around the square until we had to take ourselves home whilst the next day was still saveable.
Waking up feeling less than fresh, we set out for the Design Museum walking via the beautiful old area of Nyhavn. Having somehow worked up an appetite again we went to Manfreds, a cosy and friendly wine bar/restaurant up in the Nørrebro neighbourhood of the city. A little brother of Relæ across the street, another renowned Copenhagen resturant (a place on my hit list for my next visit to city).
If you are only in Copenhagen for a long weekend like we were, its the perfect place to end your trip after a couple of days of tasting menus and challenging ingredients, plus a lot of the big hitters are closed on Sundays.
We soothed are hangovers with comforting bowls of goulash with potatoes and kale. The star of this resturant has got to be there famous beef tartare with cress, mayonaise and crumbled crunchy rye bread. The best I have ever had.
It was then off to the airport but not before stopping by Mirrabelle bakery for a coffee, a freshly baked cookie and to fill our bags with there delicious rye bread.