If you have been paying attention to what and where is hot in food around the world, you will appreciate that Copenhagen has really been raising the bar when it comes to its cooking.
In this article we take a look at the capital of Denmark as a food-lover’s destination, with some hints and tips on how to plan your expedition and some of the things to try and include in your itinerary
Noma is still setting the standard
Frequently named as one of the best restaurants in the world, Noma was first opened in 2003 by Chef Rene Redzepi. What makes Noma really exciting is the way it has reinvented traditional Nordic cuisine to really celebrate the ingredients and showcase the freshness of flavors.
A dinner at Noma is not inexpensive, and you will need to book well in advance to secure your table, but it is absolutely worth it – a unique experience that you will treasure for a lifetime. Also worth keeping an eye on are some of the special food events that the Noma team organize – particularly popular are the seafood dinners where they take you out onto the harbor and serve you the freshest seafood you can imagine.
Have a sandwich
One of the things that you will notice on a lot of restaurant menus is ‘smørrebrød.’ In simple terms, smørrebrød is an open sandwich, but the Danish have elevated it to a fine art and it is now virtually their national dish. Smørrebrød began life as a simple lunch for farmers, but has evolved to almost an art-form and a national obsession. The construction of Smørrebrød begins with a slice of rye bread, then topped with fish, meat, or cheese, then a bit of sauce of dressing on top. If you are presented with a selection of Smørrebrød with different toppings, then there is a specific order in which you should eat them – look to the locals for some guidance so as not to make a Smørrebrød faux pas.
The herring is actually delicious
Pickled herring may not sound like much of a delicacy, but when you are in Copenhagen it is absolutely one of the things that you need to try. It is a traditional dish that traces its origins back to the time of the Vikings. The herring is often eaten with rye bread, onion salad, and eggs. If you are doing it properly then you wash it down with Aquavit – the local schnapps. The Aquivit helps the fish swim to your stomach, is what the locals tell me anyway.
Where to stay
Whatever type of accommodation that is right for your budget, there are plenty of different types of options available for you to consider. There are some spectacular luxury and boutique hotels within the city center, or you might fancy something a bit quirky like staying on a hotel that is actually a boat moored in the harbor. If you are travelling as a family, then the benefits of a private home rental may be appealing or if you are looking at Copenhagen apartments, holiday periods can be quite busy, so it is important to book early.