Daniel Berlin Krog, Gastrologik, Djuret and Operakällaren – The blog is still alive

The blog is still alive. Since my last blog post I have had several dinners worth mentioning on the blog. I just haven’t had the time or energy to post any reviews. I will try to put up some blog posts soon but in the meantime I would like to briefly share some of the dinners. Full set of pictures from all the dinners but one can be found on my Flickr page. Below are links to the Flickr Albums. My intention was to write about more than these four restaurants but the post is already so long that the other restaurants will follow in coming blog posts.

Daniel Berlin Krog

Daniel Berlin with a hen from Bokeslundsgården

In July I had an absolutely stunning dinner at Daniel Berlin Krog which managed to surpass my high expectations. It is definitely a world class restaurant. This was my fifth visit and I will be back again in a couple of weeks. I think that it will be interesting to see what Guide Michelin thinks of Daniel Berlin when the first Nordic edition arrives early next year. In my opinion it should get at least two stars. Daniel has his very own style of cooking. The quality of the produce is great. It’s cooking on a very high level..

Mackerel with seaweed and horseradish

There are few other restaurants where you get the same impression of time and place as Daniel Berlin. Many top restaurants in the Nordic countries focus on Nordic ingredients but Nordic isn’t always equal to local. If you live in the south of Sweden (or Copenhagen) it’s pretty much the same distance to the Mediterranean as to northern Sweden where the for example the vendace that gives vendace roe from Kalix is fished. Sweden is quite a big country. At Daniel Berlin however all the produce come from area near the restaurant, I think not more than around 100 kilometers. That makes a visit to the restaurant a special and unique experience. Local produce is of course not equal to good food but at Daniel Berlin localness never comes at the expense of deliciousness. A truly great restaurant. Daniel Berlin Krog The photos on Flickr

Gastrologik

Langoustine from Fjällbacka, a cream made of the langoustine head and raw and pickled kohlrabi

I have posted a couple of reviews of one of my very favorite restaurants before. For a more information about the restaurant and chefs/proprietors Anton Bjuhr and Jacob Holmström please see one of my previous reviews .In the last four months I have had two dinners at Gastrologik one in the end of July and one in September. Both meals, like all the previous ones, were great and according to me definitely worth at least two Michelin stars. Gastrologik currently holds one star. Jacob Holmström and Anton Bjuhr focus on the produce that is the best at the moment. The menu therefore changes constantly. I have know had six dinners in total at Gastrologik since they opened in late 2011 and not had a single bad dish. Quite impressive I would say. Especially considering the ever changing menu.

The two pictured dishes were absolutely magic. The picture above shows a langoustine with raw and pickled kohlrabi and a cream made of the langoustine’s. Brilliant. The second was a smoked wild turbot with very mild and delicate onion, almost like onions from Cèvennes, and a wonderful sauce made of the turbot. Both dishes are contestants for the title Dish of the year.

Spruce smoked wild turbot with this year's first yellow onion and turbot bouillon

New for this season is a Communal Table which seats up to eight guests. You can book individual seats at the Communal Table but you will sit alongside other guests and everybody is served at the same time. Jacob and Anton spend a lot of time at the Communal table serving and presenting some of the courses.  Gastrologik The photos on Flickr

Djuret

Butcher’s terrine, foie gras, apple and hazelnut

Djuret is a meat restaurant in Stockholm’s old town which focuses on one animal at a time. When e.g. cow is on the menu every single dish is based on cow. As of August this year head chef Mikael Einarsson and restaurant manager Daniel Crespi have made some changes to the menus. The à la carte menu is out in favor of two different set menus. A three course menu called 12 x 8 is power fine dining à la  the super hedonistic Leijontornet 12 x 8-dinners which the restaurant hosts twelve times every year. The second menu is a six course tasting menu called Signature. I had the Signature menu where all courses consist of at least one cut of the cow 

Fried entrecôte, cabernet sauvignon, artichoke lardo from Köttslöjd

With the new menu concepts chef Einarsson with team has taken food to a higher level. It is definitely as good as several one Michelin starred restaurants. Food is know more fine dining-like than before. There is still a rustic touch but plates are smaller and more elegant. Since every course is based around a different cut of the animal and different cooking methods are used for each course there is enough variation despite the fact that beef was omnipresent throughout the menu.

The quality of the meat was very high and the dishes were well balanced and delicious. The only let down was the dessert which was a bit uninteresting. The price for the Menu Signature is 750 SEK which represents very good value for money, especially in a Stockholm where restaurant prices don’t really seem to mirror the general inflation of consumer prices.

At the dinner I also got some information about Daniel Crespi’s and Mikael Einarsson’s upcoming restaurant Izakaya Köttslöjd which will open in September next year. I cannot say more know but I think it will be really great and definitely the most talked about restaurant of 2015 in Stockholm. Expect some spectacular cooking.

Djuret – The photos on Flickr

Operakällaren

Chef des Cuisines Stefano Catenacci with the duck press

This spring Operakällaren regained the Michelin star it lost a couple of years ago. Based on my dinner in april Michelin has made a correct decision. Operakällaren dates back to 1787 although the current dining room is not more than 120 years old. It could very well be the most beautiful dining room in the world. A dining room which itself is worth a visit.

Operakällaren

There are probably some people that overlook Operakällaren due to the fact that food is more classical French than New Nordic. But that’s a mistake because here I had one of this years most memorable dinners. I wouldn’t say it was as good as Gastrologik or Daniel Berlin but it was nevertheless a very special dinner. On wednesdays they serve what is called menu caneton, a three course dinner based on French duck where a duck press is used in the dining room to finalize the sauce that comes with the duck breast. Watching Chef des cuisines Stefano Catanacci press the juices out of the duck though de duck press and finish the sauce is great entertainment. But it is definitely not all about show. The duck was super delicious. The menu caneton is highly recommended.

Rhubarb being flambéed with vanilla infused vodka

Operakällaren may be the most formal restaurant in Stockholm but the atmosphere in the dining room was very relaxed. At no other fine dining restaurant do guest laugh as much as at Operakällaren. Service is of course exceptional.

Operakällaren The photos on Flickr

Follow me on Instagram or Twitter for updates

Oaxen Krog – Stockholm

Oaxen Krog

Efter att hösten 2011 ha serverat sin sista middag ute på ön Oaxen slog Magnus Ek och Agneta Green upp dörrarna till nya Oaxen Krog på Djurgården i Stockholm våren 2013 (följ denna länk om du vill se hur bygget av huset gick till). Nu är resan till restaurangen betydligt kortare och enklare och utsikten är nästan lika vacker. Från såväl terassen, där man kan ta en fördrink och äta aptitretarna, som matsalen har man en väldigt fin utsikt över Saltsjön.

När krogen låg ute på ön Oaxen ansåg Guide Michelin att den låg för långt bort från Stockholm för att kunna tas med i Main Cities of Europe. Nu är detta hinder undanröjt och Oaxen tilldelades i år en stjärna i Guide Michelin.

Nedan följer noteringar från en middag i mitten av juni 2014. Liksom på gamla Oaxen är det väldigt många ingredienser på varje tallrik. Det är därför inte helt enkelt att uppfatta alla smaker och det är ännu svårare att komma ihåg allt. Det blir därför inte fullständiga beskrivningar av samtliga serveringar.

Svampchips med hjärtmusselkräm

Mushroom crisps with cockle cream

 -

 Vaktelägg med lagerbladsaska och Kalixkräm

Quail egg, bay leaf ash and roe cream

Ett vaktelägg, som var kokt till relativt fast konsistens, serverades med någon form av kräm i vilken löjrom från Kalix hade blandats.

Jag skrev ursprungligen att löjrommen inte såg ut som löjrom från Kalix brukar göra och att detta fick mig att undra om det verkligen var Kalix. Om man förstorar bilden ser man att kornen nästan är genomskinliga med en orange prick inuti samt att de är större än vad Kalix brukar vara. Sedan jag publicerade detta inlägg har jag blivit upplyst att det genomskinliga utseendet orsakas av såsen som kornen låg i. Såsen innehöll syrad ostvassle vilken får kornen att koka.

Dragonkräm med friterad fläder, jäst torkad gris och jordärtskockspulver

Tarragon cream, fried elderberries, fermented and dried pork and Jerusalem artichoke powder

-

Lökkräm i friterat örtbröd med lufttorkad högrev

Onion cream in fried herb bread and one year dry cured chuck

Kvällens bästa ammis. Inuti det friterade örtbrödet låg en underbar lökkräm. En tunn skiva av lufttorkad högrev adderade lite sälta och bastoner till den söta krämen och brödet.

Skinka

Dry cured ham

Om jag minns rätt så var denna skinka egengjord och lufttorkad i ett år. Det är förvisso kul med något som gjorts in-house men tyvärr var det ingen märkvärdig skinka. Jag upplevde den som ganska blek. Den var dessutom alldeles för salt. Enligt min mening höll den inte enstjärnig nivå.

Platträkor

Prawns

Räkorna (en per person) som serverades stekta eller grillade hade en mycket fin söt smak. Vi fick även en sås till men jag minns inte vad det var. Det var godare att bara äta räkan som den var utan att doppa den i såsen.

Tvåhundraårig islandsmussla och kräm på syrade ärtor, ärtsoja smaksatt med rostade örter, råskivad jordärtsskocka samt rågbröd

200 year old mahogany & cream of sour peas, pea soy sauce with roasted herbs, sliced raw Jerusalem artichoke & rye bread

Tyvärr minns jag inte denna rätt i detalj. På tallriken låg två små bitar av islandsmusslan samt en hel del andra komponenter. Musslan försvann bland de andra ingredienserna.

Örthalstrad havskräfta med ramslök, natursyrad grädde, rökt späck, ättikschips och grillad dill

Herb grilled langoustine with warm sour cream, grilled lettuce & mushroom lard with mushroom soy sauce

Havskräftan hade halstrats tillsammans med tre olika örter (timjan, rosmarin och salvia). Själva havskräftan var väldigt liten och inte särskilt imponerade men örthalstringen gav den en fin smak. Kräftan försvann i ramslökskrämen och den syrade grädden. Krämerna tog helt över och gjorde rätten obalanserad.

Grillad färsk Skillebyvitlök med potatiskräm, rökt torkad äggula, kirskål och brödsmulor i brynt smör

Grilled fresh Skilleby garlic with potato cream, smoked dried egg yolk & ground elder with bread crumbs in brown butter

Liksom flera av de andra rätterna bestod denna rätt av för många ingredienser vilket gjorde den obalanserad. Den innehöll dock en del komponenter som var väldigt goda. Att kombinera potatiskrämen med rökt och torkad äggula var riktigt bra. Även den friterade kirskålen var väldigt god. Den i äppelcidervinäger stekta kirskålen blev dock för mycket även om den tillförde nödvändig syra.

Granstekt spindelkrabba med havregransgröt och kålrabbi

Spruce fried spider crab, oatmeal & spruce porridge & kohlrabi

-

Tunt skuret rått reninnanlår med hasselnötter, kräm på tallskott samt gröna syror och kålrabbiblast

Thinly sliced raw topside of reindeer with hazelnuts, cream of pine sprout, green sorrels & kohlrabi haulm

En av kvällens bättre rätter. Tunna skivor av rått innanlår av ren samsades med hasselnötter, en söt kräm/pasta av hasselnötter, tallskottsemulsion och gröna blad. Det var inte särskilt mycket kött på tallriken men renen var av fin kvalitet och kombinationen med hasselnötter riktigt god. Sötman balanserades fint upp av de syrligare komponenterna.

Sju sorters gryn i getyoghurt med ljummen tartar på makrill, djurgårdsblomster, svartbeta och persiljejuice

Seven kinds of grain in goat yogurt with lukewarm tartar of mackerel, flowers from Djurgården with black beet & parsley juice

Makrill i två varianter, som stekt och som ljummen tartar, serverades med svarbeta, persiljejuice och en getyoghurt i vilken sju sorters gryn hade blandats. Den här rätten var dessvärre riktigt undermålig. Jag förstår inte alls kombinationen av de olika ingredienserna. Den stekta makrillen funkade förvisso fint med persiljejuicen men tartaren och getyoghurten med grynen gjorde bara rätten konstig. Tyvärr var den stekta makrillen överstekt vilket gav den en mindre angenäm textur. Mindre tilltalande textur hade även getyoghurten med sju olika sorters gryn.

Iwagyu rostbiff med vårmurklor, svart trumpetsvamp, svartrot och slånlav från Mörkö serverad med kräm på fermenterade morötter samt libbsticka

Roast beef from IWagyu with spring morels, black trumpet mushrooms, salsify & oakmoss from Mörkö served with cream of fermented carrots & lovage

Den här rätten var lite som ett smörgåsbord. En massa goda grejer men det blev tyvärr för spretigt.

Vårlamm bakat i björknäver med tunt skuren rå svamp, puré på rökta äpplen och svamp samt rödlök i fermenterade blåbär

Spring lamb baked in birch bark with thinly sliced raw mushrooms and a puré of smoked apples & mushrooms served with onions in fermented blueberry

Den här rätten var totalt obegriplig. För mig var det bara en samling ingredienser som inte passade ihop. Vad äppelskivan gjorde på tallriken förstod jag inte alls.

Sorbet på stensöta och lakritsrot, kräm på vit choklad, fläderblomskapris, transparenta päron samt karamelliserade fänkålsfrön

Sorbet of pollypod fern & licorice root, cream of white chocolate, elderflower capers, transparent pear & caramelised fennel seeds

-

Glass på myskmadra och sorbet på rostad färskost med åkerbär, brända pannkaksmulor & pistagepasta

Ice cream of woodruff & toasted cream cheese sorbet with Arctic raspberry, burned pancake crumbs & pistachio paste

I grunden var det här en god dessert. Låt vara att det hade räckt med ett sorts krispigt element. Att servera åkerbär i mitten av juni känns något märkligt. Jag har svårt att tro att det finns vilda åkerbär nu.

Jag har tyvärr inte så mycket positivt att säga om denna middag. Visst är det matlagning på hög nivå men dessvärre är maten alldeles för invecklad, överarbetad och spretig. Det är genomgående för många ingredienser och smaker på varje tallrik som inte skapar någon harmoni. Jag tycker heller inte att smakerna hänger ihop.

Ute på ön Oaxen fanns det alltid en känsla av tid och plats i maten. Den känslan finns tyvärr inte på nya Oaxen. Råvarukvaliteten var ok men inte fantastisk och inte i nivå med de bästa restaurangerna i Stockholm. Dock är det inte helt lätt att avgöra detta när varje rätt är full med så många olika smaker. Enligt min mening var det här inte en middag på enstjärnig nivå. I den bedömningen har jag inte tagit hänsyn till priset som jag tycker är väldigt högt utifrån nivån på matlagningen. Servicen var dock perfekt och genomgående mycket trevlig. Jag har nu varit på Oaxen sju gånger, varav sex gånger på gamla Oaxen. Jag tror att det dröjer innan jag går tillbaka.

Följ mig på Instagram or Twitter för uppdateringar.

Daniel Berlin Krog – Skåne Tranås Spring 2014

Cod - Roe - White Asparagus About two months ago I had an absolutely wonderful lunch at one of my favorite restaurants Daniel Berlin. Unfortunately I have not had time to post a review and I don’t think that I will manage to do that before my next dinner at Daniel Berlin in about two weeks. I will therefore just share some photos from the lunch along with saying that Daniel Berlin keeps on serving food at the very highest level. It is a very unique experience. Absolute world class food. I therefore recommend you to go there as soon as possible.

Follow me on Instagram or Twitter for updates. In two weeks I will also visit Noma for the first time.

White asparagus – Cream – Butter

White asparagus - Cream - Butter
-

Marehomp – Lovage – Rye
Marehomp - Lovage - Rye
-
Fermented apple – Chanterelle
Fermented apple - Chanterelle
-
Turnip – Browned butter – Mustard
Turnip - Browned butter - Mustard seeds
-
Quail egg – Dried Cow – Oregano
Quail egg - Dried Cow - Oregano
-
Yeast pancake – Rosehip – Pork fat
Yeast pancake - Rosehip - Pork fat
-
Bird liver – Chestnut – Cinnamon
Bird liver - Chestnut - Cinnamon
-
Lumpfish roe – Horseradish – Ättika
Lumpfish roe - Horseradish - Ättika
-
Mackerel – Seaweed – Chlorophyll
Mackerel - Seaweed - Chlorophyll
-
Egg yolk – Nettles – Potato
Egg yolk - Nettles - Potato
-
Parsnip – Linden – Hazel
Parsnip - Linden - Hazel
-
Veal – Ramson – Garlic mustard
Veal - Ramson - Garlic mustard
-
Yoghurt – Rosemary – Egg white

Yoghurt - Rosemary - Egg white

Tickets – Barcelona

Tickets Barcelona

Tickets in Barcelona is probably one of the toughest reservations in the Europe. It is possible to reserve tables up to two months in advance but tables seem to disappear as soon as they are released. When I went to Barcelona this time we booked the trip less than two months in advance and it was totally impossible to reserve a table. This however doesn’t mean that it is impossible to get into the restaurant. I have heard from a couple of people that its worth going there just when they open because there are often no-shows. We went to the restaurant about a quarter before they were to open and luckily got a table.

Tickets’ olive-S

Tickets’ olive-S

Unlike Albert Adriàs other restaurant next door, 41 degrees experience, there is no tasting menu at Tickets. Tickets is a tapas restaurants where you order as many tapas as you want. It’s a good idea to let the staff choose a number of dishes for you because it’s quite difficult to read the menu. It was also quite difficult to hear the presentations of the food when it was served. I can therefore not give detailed information of what the dishes consisted of.

Crab in avocado cannelloni

Crab in avocado cannelloni

The technical level of the food is quite high with some elaborate presentations. One of the desserts, ”The Corks”, a coffee brioche with a praliné mousse looked exactly like a real wine bottle cork. It was also very delicious and had a great combination of textures; soft on the outside and crunchy on the inside. The classic elBulli olive spheres are also on the menu. I recommend you try the air baguette with Joselito ham. I didn’t eat it this time but I had it at 41 degrees. It’s brilliant.

Orange salad with Gordal olive jus, mint and ras el hanout

Orange salad with Gordal olive jus, mint and ras el hanout

All is not about technique though. We also had an orange salad salad with olive oil and ras el hanout and a wonderful avocado cannelloni filled with crab. The quality of the produce is generally fine but not spectacular. The cooking was faultless. I have heard quite a few people saying that the food at elBulli was strange and not always especially delicious. That is not the case at Tickets (or 41 degrees). Here everything was delicious and even though there is a lot technique in some of the dishes the food is never challenging. I would rather say it’s quite comforting.

White asparagus in almond milk

White asparagus in almond milk

This was a very good dinner, especially considering the price. We payed around 55-60 euro per person for the food. I would say that it is difficult to eat better for that kind of money. But if you disregard the cost of the meal I don’t really think that Tickets lives up to the hype. Maybe my assessment is affected by the high expectations I had before the dinner. Two years ago I had a mind-blowing dinner at 41 degrees experience. And some of the dishes are served in both 41 degrees and Tickets so I expected the food to be at the same level.

Papada “El Manteca” El Mollete planchada

Papada "El Manteca" El Mollete planchada

Tickets is currently ranked no 57 in the world by San Pellegrino and Restaurant Magazine. In my opinion there are a number of restaurants that should be ranked higher. That said I would happily go back to Tickets. If you look at it as the tapas restaurant that it sets out to be; it’s brilliant and quite unique. I do not think that there is any other restaurant where you can have tapas of this level without experiencing a full tasting menu. It is much better than the tapas bar Inopia that preceded Tickets. Tickets is highly recommended if you are in Barcelona but it is not worth a special journey.

Follow me on Instagram or Twitter for updates.

Manchego cheese foam in mini airbags with hazelnut-olive oil caviar

Manchego cheese foam in mini airbags with hazelnut-olive oil caviar

-

Tartar of tuna with soya, ginger and wasabi sauce

Tartar of tuna with soya, ginger and wasabi sauce

-

Traditionally cooked lentils with duck escabeche

Traditionally cooked lentils with duck escabeche

-

Confit artichoke with quail egg yolk and salmon roe

Confit artichoke with quail egg yolk and salmon roe

-

The corks, Lavazza coffee brioche with praliné mousse

The corks, Lavazza coffee brioche with praliné mousse

-

Raspberry rose with licorice meringue

Raspberry rose with licorice meringue

-

Sweet maki, lime marshmallow, mango and nori gelatin

Sweet maki, lime marshmallow, mango and nori gelatin

Hisop – Barcelona

One of my greatest discoveries during my previous trip to Barcelona in October 2012 was the one Michelin star restaurant Hisop. Located on a quiet side street to the busy Avinguda Diagonal it is not the restaurant you just stumble upon. Neither does it seem to get much attention in traditional or social media, except for the fact that it holds one star in Guide Michelin.

Hisop is run by chef Oriol Ivern Bondia. The restaurant is quite small, seating around 30 guests. The interior design is rather minimalistic yet it feels very comfortable and not stiff at all thanks to table cloths and flower arrangements on the tables. When it comes to the food choice is between an à la carte menu or a nine course tasting for 59 euro. The tasting menu, which must be described as a real bargain, is highly recommended. Mark-ups on wine seem to be fair. I had a bottle of one of my favorite white wines from Spain Ossian. The wine, which retails for about 17 euro, cost 30 euro at Hisop.

Grilled octopus, kaffir lime and seawater soup

Grilled octopus, kaffir lime and seawater soup

The dinner started with a seawater and kaffir lime soup with grilled octopus. The soup was made of mussels and the flavored with lime zests. A very good start, the kaffir lime giving a fresh contrast to the grilled octopus. Maybe there was a little bit too much kaffir lime. The soup tasted more of lime than of sea water (or mussels).

Cuttlefish, garlic and parsley

Cuttlefish, garlic and parsley

Very thin slices of cuttlefish with a garlic emulsion and a parsley sauce/emulsion. A quite simple dish yet wonderful flavor combinations. The best dish of the night.

Mackerel, tomato and basil in different textures

Mackerel, tomato and basil in different textures

Mackerel with candied tomato and basil in different textures; as a crumble, a very thin jelly disc and a sauce made of mixed basil.

Asparagus with tuna and Jabugo ham

Asparagus with tuna and Jabugo ham

Raw tuna with white asparagus cooked two ways and a Jabugo ham mayonnaise. The flavor combinations worked quite fine but the dish was a bit unbalanced with too much mayonnaise which made it very fatty.

Fish of the day with morels and rocoto

Fish of the day (like a scorpion fish) with morels and rocoto

I didn’t get the name of the fish but the waiter said that it was almost like a scorpion fish. The fish had a quite chewy texture. It was served with green asparagus and a a creamy sauce with morels, which didn’t really fit with the other components. There were also some rocoto on the plate, in what must have been the texturas pearls.

Suckling lamb with chanterelles and lavender

Suckling lamb with chanterelles and lavender

The suckling lamb had been cooked sous-vide and the seared quite hard. A little bit to hard for me. It was served with some chanterelles and a purée of something that I do not remember a the time of writing. This was a quite rich dish which would have benefitted of some acidity. It didn’t really have the elegance of a dish that you normally associate with suckling lamb.

Lavender sorbet

Lavender sorbet

A very delicate lavender sorbet was served to cleanse our palates before the desserts.

Pickled strawberries and beetroot

Pickled strawberries and beetroot

A very good dessert with the earthiness of the beetroot sorbet acted as a backbone to the sweetness och sourness of the pickled strawberries.

Blood orange, juniper berry and “tocinillo”

Blood orange, juniper berry and "tocinillo"

This dessert was much better than it looked. Tocinillo is a Spanish custard. Unfortunately I do not remember this dish in detail but it was a very good combination of the custard, blood orange sorbet and the juniper berries which added some character.

Grapefruit with passion fruit eucalyptus

Grapefruit with passion fruit eucalyptus

Normally the tasting menu comes with one cheese serving and two desserts. Since my girlfriend is pregnant we were kindly offered to choose a dessert from the à la carte menu instead of the cheese. Like the previous course this dessert was also much better than it looked. I am sorry but I don’t remember the exact components but I can say that it was a very good end of the dinner.

This was a very good but not fantastic dinner. There were good flavor combinations but some dishes were a bit unbalanced due to the amount of fat and lack of acidity. The quality of the produce was fine but not remarkable. Hisop is worth its Michelin star, although I wouldn’t say that it is as good as the one Michelin starred restaurants in Stockholm. For 59 euro Hisop represents astonishingly good value. If you want to have solid good food and do not want to spend a lot of money Hisop is highly recommended.

Follow me on Instagram or Twitter for updates.

Bistronomy in Stockholm

Ssäm, korean blood sausage, Marenne oyster and kimchi Nook

If you live in Barcelona or London you probably don’t associate Stockholm with inexpensive restaurants. But if you look beyond the Michelin starred fine dining restaurants you will find a couple of restaurants that serve ambitious food without a price tag to match. It actually seems like the French bistronomy trend is slowly catching on in Stockholm. This post will focus on four of the most recently opened restaurants; Lilla Ego, Nook, Shibumi and Sushi Sho. I wouldn’t say that they (alone) are worth the trip to Sweden but if you’re going to Stockholm and don’t just want to have fine dining-food these restaurants are the definitely worth a visit. If you live in Stockholm all are highly recommended.

Lilla Ego

Daniels vinnarrätt ÅK13, fast bra. Serveras med dovhjortssadel, bakade champinjoner och vinägersky

Lilla Ego opened late last year and very quickly became the hardest reservation in Stockholm. The restaurant is run by chef patrons Daniel Räms and Tom Sjöstedt. Both have won the prestigious competition Årets kock (Chef of the Year), basically the Swedish cooking championship. In stark contrast to the New Nordic fashion of less is more there is a maximum overload of flavors. Every single bite is packed of flavors. Nowhere in Stockholm do you eat more delicious food than at Lilla Ego. You could call it comfort food but there is more complexity in the dishes than you normally would associate with comfort food. I have had four dinners at Lilla Ego and every single dish has ben perfectly balanced and cooked to perfection. In my opinion Lilla Ego performs on one Michelin star-level. There is no tasting menu just a regular à la carte menu.

Oklassisk fläsktartar med smaker och tillbehör från djupaste Småland. Men tolkad på Lilla Egos vis.

Please follow this link to my Flickr album for more pictures from Lilla Ego.

www.lillaego.com

Nook

Lamb, browned cabbage purée and hazelnuts Nook

Nook is run by chef Claes Grännsjö and restaurant manager Alexander Bäckman. Before opening Nook Claes Grännsjö was head chef at the now closed one Michelin star restaurant Kock & Vin in Gothenburg. He also did a very short stint at Björn Frantzén’s pub The Flying Elk in Stockholm. Alexander Bäckman have also worked at Kock & Vin. In addition to an à la carte menu and two different three course menus for 300 and 400 SEK respectively there is a list of snacks and you can have a whole roasted suckling pig if you are a party of four to six persons. The majority of the dishes at Nook have an Korean or Asian touch. A recommendation is to start the dinner with some snacks. I had an excellent ssäm with Korean blood sausage, oyster and kimchi which was followed by an equally delicious steamed bun with pork, pickled cucumber and Hoisin sauce. My main course was a super tasty dish of lamb served in two ways with cabbage cream, cabbage and hazelnuts. This is very close to one Michelin star level cooking and it’s exceptional value for money.

Tartar of char, cucumber, avocado, mustard seeds, wasabi and mussel vinaigrette Nook

Please follow this link to my Flickr album for more pictures from Nook.

http://nookrestaurang.se

Shibumi

Beef tartar, chili, radish, cucumber, vendace roe Shibumi

This year’s most anticipated new restaurant is one Michelin starred chef Sayan Isaksson’s Shibumi. In the same building as Esperanto (one Michelin star) and Råkultur there is now also an Izakaya (Japanese pub) where focus is on warm Japanese food (at Råkultur you can have very good sushi). Sayan Isaksson’s plan was to open a pub with a bit of a ”rough” feel but being a master of creating beautiful food it seems like he could not refrain from adding a touch of Esperanto magic to the food at Shibumi. At no pub will you get as elegantly presented food as at Shibumi. The food is of course very delicious. I have just been to Shibumi once (it opened in the end of April) but I will definitely return several times. The highlight was an amazing beef tartar with chili, cucumber and vendace roe. Food is served in mid-sized portions.

Temaki Ice cream - Brown tea and Ginger and shiso sorbet Shibumi

www.esperantorestaurant.se/shibumi/

Please follow this link to my Flickr album for more pictures from Lilla Ego.

Sushi Sho

Skipjack tuna Sushi Sho

In Stockholm there are sushi restaurants in basically every block. Unfortunately most of them are crap. For a couple of years the best sushi in Stockholm has been served at the above mentioned Råkultur. But since about two months there is a serious contender to the title of having the best sushi in town. I am not sure if they have reached their goal yet but they are getting better and better. Sushi Sho is a rather small restaurant with about eight seats at a counter just in front of chef Carl Ishizaki and four seats at a separate table. I recommend that you choose the omakase menu where every nigiri and other types of dishes are served one after the other. I am no expert on sushi but at least by Swedish standards this is very good. In my opinion there was a little bit to much soy sauce on the raw nigiris. I should mention that I am not a huge fan of soy sauce which easily becomes to dominant. Carl Ishizaki carefully grills some of the fish using a kitchen torch. With the slightly browned fish there was a much better balance between salt, fat and the slight caramelization. All of the torch grilled nigiris were excellent. I will definitely return several times to Sushi Sho. This is definitely a restaurant to watch.

Cod yuzu Sushi Sho

www.sushisho.se

Follow me on Instagram or Twitter for updates.

Hedone – London

Variations of citrus Hedone

I have a couple of great dinners that I would like to share on blog and more will come. Unfortunately I do not have the time to write proper reviews. Instead of publishing half year old reviews I will post some very summarized reviews. This, the first post, will be about an amazing dinner at Hedone. Posts about Daniel Berlin Krog in Skåne Tranås and Nook will hopefully follow soon.

Caviar, bone marrow and brioche

Caviar, bone marrow and brioche Hedone

I assume that readers of this blog already know the story about Hedone and its chef proprietor Mikael Jönsson. I will therefore skip the background info this time. This was my second dinner at Hedone. I first visited Hedone back 2011, just a couple of months after its opening day. That dinner was stunning and a real eye-opener on how food can taste. The only restaurant that I had been to at the time (including some Michelin three star and 50 Best top ten restaurants) that served produce of the same high quality was Etxebarri in Atxondo. The scallops I had that night was beyond everything that I had had up until that day. Even today I always compare scallops with the ones at Hedone. I have had some good ones but non as good as Hedone’s.

Poached oyster and granny smith apple

Poached oyster and granny smith apple Hedone

Hedone was very good in 2011. Now it is amazing. When it comes to ingredients quality I would say that Hedone is a benchmark restaurant. Of course you get good produce at several restaurants but at very few do the ingredients shine in the way they do at Hedone. Everything just burst of flavour. The highlight this evening was a green asparagus from, if I remember correctly, Luberon in France. I do not completely agree with Mikael Jönsson when he says that food in Sweden doesn’t taste anything. There are some excellent produce, especially at two of my favorite restaurants in Sweden Gastrologik and Daniel Berlin Krog . But when it comes to asparagus Sweden doesn’t really seem to come close. The asparagus at Hedone was astonishing. Even better than the extremely good asparagus I had at Astrance last year.

Asparagus and pistachio

Asparagus and pistachio Hedone

Since my first visit the food at Hedone has become more elaborate and complex. In 2011 the plates were fairly ”simple” (in a very good way) with just a few ingredients on each plate. Normally I prefer that kind of ”simple” food to overly complicated dishes consisting on many components. Now there seem to be more labour put into every dish. There are still just a few ingredients on each plate and the produce shines as much as before but now there is more complexity. In my opinion this is three Michelin star food beating most high ranked restaurants that I have been to.

Scallop

Scallop Hedone

Other highlights this evening were (1) a Liquid parmesan ravioli with onion consommé, pancetta and horseradish, (2) Turbot with cauliflower, broccoli and a sauce made of smoked fish stock and (3) Millefeuille with crème pâtissière, grapefruit and saffron. The texture of the millefeuille was just unbelievable, so feathery light yet not dry at all. A true masterpiece texture wise. Though I was not equally fond of the grapefruit and saffron combination. Unfortunately the scallop was not as good as last time, which Mikael admitted, and I found it slightly over cooked. The truffles didn’t really impressed me but besides that, it was a stunning dinner. I will definitely return. In fact if I could only eat at one restaurant for the rest of my life it would probably be Hedone (not counting my two favorite restaurants Gastrologik and Speceriet which sort of have become my second home) .

Turbot, cauliflower and broccoli

Turbot, cauliflower and broccoli Hedone

Follow me on Instagram or Twitter for updates. This week I will have canard à la press for dinner at Operakällaren in Stockholm, which regained its Michelin star this year and next week I will go to Barcelona.

For more pictures, with higher resolution,  from this dinner go to my Flickr-account.

Liquid parmesan ravioli, onion consommé, pancetta and horseradish

Liquid parmesan ravioli, onion consommé, pancetta and horseradish Hedone

-

Suckling pig, morels and carrot

Suckling pig, morels and carrot Hedone

-

Sika deer and endives

Sika deer Hedone

-

Millefeuille; crème pâtissière, grapefruit and saffron

Millefeuille; crème pâtissière, grapefruit and saffron Hedone

-

Warm chocolate mousse, powdered raspberry, passionfruit jelly and Madagascar ice cream

Warm chocolate mousse, powdered raspberry, passionfruit jelly and Madagascar ice cream Hedone

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 26 other followers