From Barcelona with Love

It’s that time of the year again – cava overdose time. Normally we have timed our visit to the first week of October, the week of the cava festival Cavatast. This year, however, we decided to come early and stay in Barcelona instead. Sant Sadurni is a train-ride away and it always takes more time to visit the winemakers than we anticipate (we always end up drinking cava with them for hours). Now we are just drinking cava in Barcelona by ourselves (smirk). If you are interested in Cavatast, you can find a survival guide here. In this post I have collected a few old favorites from Barcelona – where should you go for a good glass of wine. I am of course also going to post about some new finds (but more about those on Sunday). Continue reading “From Barcelona with Love”

The Star in the Woods

I get an ominous chill from the title of the post “Star in the Woods”, like “the cabin in the woods” – PM & Vänner is not quite like that. Quite the opposite, it is one of the warmest restaurants I have ever been to. Literally. The restaurant is located in the small-ish city of Växjö in Southern Sweden (thus I call it the woods). It has one Michelin star and it is one of five restaurants in the world granted the Wine Spectator Grand Award in 2017 (ONE OF FIVE!!). Continue reading “The Star in the Woods”

On the Rooftops of Stockholm

Rooftop bars, I have always had mixed feelings about them. I admire nice views and having a drink in fresh air, but a rooftop and quality drinks seems to be an impossible combination. There are a few exceptions, like Smoke and Mirrors in Singapore, although there the service is poor. I just don’t get it – why does it have to be so? Probably because a rooftop will always lure in customer anyway, so why bother. Takpark in Stockholm was to some extent different.  Continue reading “On the Rooftops of Stockholm”

Amber Wines at Ambar – Stockholm

Stockholm has been blessed with many new wine bars this years. Two weeks ago we enjoyed a fine range of interesting wines at Folii in Södermalm, and last Friday we tried out newcomer Ambar on Tomtebogatan. In June I also introduced Dryck as a new addition to the Stockholm wine scene. Its great to see such a development taking off on the wine-side. Wine is so popular at the moment, that restaurant owners dare taking some risks with very narrow concepts. Ambar is a good example of brave specialization, they serve a wide range of orange and amber wines with Japanese food. Sounds weird perhaps, but it is actually a lovely and working combination. And the jolly personnel make the visit feel even more special. Continue reading “Amber Wines at Ambar – Stockholm”

The Return to Joses

The best restaurants are the hardest to write about. Especially when you have some personal memories of the place, like um.. first (and probably second and third) date with hubby, reunions with friends and, well, Thursdays. In London everybody goes out on Thursdays. I will never be objective about Joses. But I can try explaining what got me so attached and what it is that keeps calling me back. Joses is a wine and tapas bar on Bermondsay street in London, just blocks away from where I used to live (when I was still cool). Continue reading “The Return to Joses”

Helsinki’s Best Bars for Nature Wines

I had a quick look at my statistics last week, and one of the most popular posts of all time is my review of Helsinkis wine bars a few years back. All the places in that post are still relevant, I would go for a glass of wine at Latva, Vin Vin, Soil Wine Room and Sinne Helsinki any day. However, there are is a new genre of wine bar in town, that should really be mentioned – the natural wine bar. Nature wines are produced without any help from synthetic chemistry: pesticides or additives like clearing agents. They are usually unfiltered and can have some sediments that make the wine murky and thick in color. There is a skin contact-trend going on which means that you can also find orange, and amber-wines on the lists. Continue reading “Helsinki’s Best Bars for Nature Wines”

The Little Gin Bar at Nytorget – Bar Agrikultur

Nytorget is kind of a hipster-cool city oasis. It’s a little park in SoFo (South of Folkungagatan), Södermalm, surrounded by charity shops and vegan cafes. I have long avoided hanging out there. Not because I don’t like second hand or vegan, but rather because it is so crowded by locals and tourists and the food and drinks selection has been limited. This summer, everything has changed – Bar Agrikultur has opened next to the park. Now, I have been hanging out around Nytorget every week. Other newcomers, like Café Pasqal opening a branch there will make it even more attractive. Continue reading “The Little Gin Bar at Nytorget – Bar Agrikultur”

Dinner in the Archipelago at Oaxen Slip

I often get questions about Swedish cuisine – what is it besides meatballs? And furthermore, where can you eat something Swedish? Stockholm, as many big cities, cater to a vast variety of styles of food, and a traditional and hearty Swedish menu has not been trending. The restaurant scene is dominated by New Nordic, Asia inspired and French bistro -styles, as well as vegetarian and vegan aspirations. None of these, except for perhaps New Nordic, is very Swedish. There are a few restaurants though I can recommend for a Swedish experience. Bistro Oaxen Slip on Djurgården island is one of them. And here are some reasons why. Continue reading “Dinner in the Archipelago at Oaxen Slip”

My Best Tourist Tip in Town – The Flying Elk

I often get questions from friends visiting Stockholm: where would I recommend to eat. You would think this is a question I love answering, however, I actually find it a bit hard. I could recommend tons of places, but I run into hesitation. Why? Three things. Firstly popular restaurants in Stockholm require advance booking. A lot of advance booking. So all of those who are not extremely well planned (90%), will just hit a wall when trying to score a table. Which is a bit discouraging. Second, many visitors will find the Stockholm price level for food high. I find it inconsiderate to suggest something that will cost an arm and a leg, so I need to really think of those price worthy places that are easy on the wallet . Third, people like eating different things, and I am generally suspicious of restaurants that think they can master several cuisines (if you advertise that you master everything – I suspect you master nothing). And as you know, I never, ever, recommend something that I don’t think is good. Continue reading “My Best Tourist Tip in Town – The Flying Elk”

Yakitori and Japanese Cocktails at Yardbird – Hong Kong

As I sat down to write this post, I realized, it is already a month since we came back from Hong Kong, and I haven’t even started going through all the places we visited. There were some pretty awesome restaurants there, and it would be a shame to keep them just to myself. Yardbird is one such place: well known by local expats, but rarely mentioned in tourist guides. Perhaps for the reason that you cannot reserve a table, so who wants a bunch tourists queuing to get into your favorite restaurant.  We were lucky enough to be tipped off by a friendly waiter at restaurant Amber, so there we were, a quarter before Yardbird opened, waiting to get our hands on some of that awesome yakitori.  Continue reading “Yakitori and Japanese Cocktails at Yardbird – Hong Kong”