Recommendations from the World Best Sommelier?

When I think about the worlds best sommelier being Swedish, I feel a small rush of pride. Even though I am not Swedish. Nevertheless I have been fascinated by Arvid Rosenberg, who won the title this year. He seems very down to earth, not like one of these rock star sommeliers. He basically says he worked extremely hard for six years to be ready for the competition. I can respect that. Continue reading “Recommendations from the World Best Sommelier?”

The Best Wine Bars in Stockholm

It is almost 1am in the morning when I am writing this post. I have just arrived at my hotel in Poland, unpacked and answered the most urgent emails. I was actually considering going to sleep (as I should), but then thought I cannot leave the blog empty until Friday. Without putting major effort into the writing, this is my olive branch to you: a comprehensive list of the best places for wine in Stockholm. I really gave some thought to this list that I made for my travel site, Tripsteri. So it is definitely not a quick fix. It is THE list you should consider when coming to Stockholm for wineventures!

Enjoy!

19 Glas: Stora Nygatan 19
AG: Kronobergsgatan 37
Bar Nombre: Odengatan 36
The Burgundy: Yxsmedsgränd 12
Corvina Enoteka: Kornhamnstorg 47
Cultur: Österlånggatan 34
Eriks Vinbar: Stadsgården 6
Garage del Gusto: Västmannagatan 54
Gaston: Mälartorget 15 ja tavaratalo NK, 4. kerros
The Green Queen: Norr Mälarstrand 64
Hornstulls Bodega: Hornsbruksgatan 24
HTL Lounge (Cava-baari): Kungsgatan 53
Monks Wine Room: Lilla Nygatan 2
Naturligtvis: Kommendörsgatan 23,
NOFO Vinbar: Tjärhovsgatan 11
Vin Valvet: Södermalmstorg 8
Wijnjas Ost & Vinkällare: Scheelegatan 3
Xarcuteria: Hantverkargatan 40

xx Soile

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Gaston in Gamla Stan
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Corvina Enoteca
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Corvina Enoteca
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Cava served from low glasses at Monks Wine Room (big dislike)
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Visiting 19 Glas in Gamla Stan
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Hornstulls Bodega
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Hornstulls Bodega

Wineweek 76: Cherry Blossoms and More Exploring in Gamla Stan

Something special is in the air every spring when the cherry trees of Kungsträdgården (Kings Garden) blossom. The park is located in the middle of the city, right next to the “Harrods” of Stockholm, Nordiska Kompaniet. The park has about 40 something trees. They were a gift from Japan to the King of Sweden in 1998. Continue reading “Wineweek 76: Cherry Blossoms and More Exploring in Gamla Stan”

Going Wild at Chef & Sommelier

A few weeks back I heard the concept wild food for the first time. It all makes sense now, several restaurants offer self picked kale, or apples from the chefs backyard. It is not just about growing with ecological methods, its about picking food from the wild. Ingredients without any production-like manipulation. That is wild food, and supposedly it is very cool.  Continue reading “Going Wild at Chef & Sommelier”

Remembering Reims

Exactly a year ago, I was in Reims, and I was excited. We had just spent all day at the grower champagne fair: Terres & Vins de Champagne. This year, we decided not to go. Frankly because we do not really see ourselves expanding to champagne right now. The monopoly is already really good with the French bubbly, and we will not be able to compete. We will rather focus on what we are great at, which is cava.  Continue reading “Remembering Reims”

Wineweek 75: Exploring Gamla Stan

This week, things have been moving forwards. We have finally contracted with our new warehouse, ordered all of our summer wines, and organized transport. In a week, the new warehouse in Copenhagen should be bulging with wonderful wine. I can’t wait! What is a bit special about these orders is, that we have started taking in much more small batches. The aim has been not only to increase the selection, but also have some more high end stuff to sell via the monopoly. The papers for selling at the monopoly are still lying on the table, but the intention of sending them in is (ahem) high. Continue reading “Wineweek 75: Exploring Gamla Stan”

Riding the Izakaya Wave with Jason Atherton – Sosharu London

Jason Atherton is opening new restaurants at a rate not seen since Gordon Ramsey had his rapid expansion phase. And note, I have always been impressed with the consistently high quality. But after a recent disappointing re-visit to his Singapore restaurant Esquina I was not sure what to expect from his new upscale izakaya in Londons Farringdon. We visited a few weeks ago during our short spring break in London.

Sosharu has jumped on the izakaya trend, and as most of the places in Europe, it has missed the point and idea of an izakaya.  The common missunderstanding seems to be that an izakaya is fine dinign or at least a nice Japanese”bistro”. It is rather the opposite, a shady and smoky bar with some simple food (like yakitori and ramen), that one crawls to after a drunken evening at a bar before heading home. As most new European izakayas, Sosharu is made much fancier than an izakaya usually is in Japan. My initial annoyance has however started to subside, so I can sort of forgive Sosharu for this sin. And I must say, it does seem that Jason at least has some idea of what kind of food an izakaya should have, as beneath the fancy outer layer, there is a simple and delicious menu. If it werent for the price tag and difficulty to get reservations, I could definitely chow down some of that tempura as bar food.

The ambience aims to be an upper mid-range cool bar and restaurant and in that they succeed really well. The space is cool and inciting, and you can see some into the kitchen. They offer a nice selection of cocktails and wines. I love the house champagne, Les Murgiers, which comes from Francis Boulard. The beer selection could however easily be expanded. I am much more fond of having a fresh malty drink with my asian dishes rather than wine. The beers that were on the list however were nicely selected.

The main attraction here is the food. It is a mix of small dishes and some bigger bowls and I strongly recommend sharing. All the food we had was really good but the standout dishes were in general the tempura and the different grilled meats. I was also really happy about the bacon wrapped cherry tomatoes (I think I love everything with bacon). The rice bowls were also really good but required some waiting time, so I would make sure to top up with some starters.

Service was friendly and a despite some waits for drinks I would still say they got the basics right. Would happily visit again.

xx Soile

Say Welcome to Torelló!

The reason I am posting today as opposed to my usual time on Wednesday is very simple. I was just too busy. Too busy introducing the newest member of the Winecurious family, Torelló, to some of our best clients. This deal has been cooking for a while. We have been in discussions with Torello for almost half a year, and finally all of our efforts have been rewarded. Our first shipment of Torelló wines will leave Spain next week.  Continue reading “Say Welcome to Torelló!”

Wineweek 74: Portugal on my Mind

The week has been exhausting. Not that I have been doing any heavy lifting. However, I have had to concentrate 24/7 on work. All good stuff, but just too much at the same time. Or wait a minute. Perhaps I can call that heavy lifting after all. Having to use your brain at such a high capacity can feel like you have a backpack filled with rocks on your shoulders. So when Friday came, I was feeling relieved. That first glass of bubbly Friday evening tasted better than ever. I am not a comfort drinker, but this time a glass of wine was just what I needed to relieve the stress. I also received a guest from Finland, so the rest of the weekend was all set t be awesome.  Continue reading “Wineweek 74: Portugal on my Mind”