Posts tagged things to do
Posts tagged things to do
When we booked our flights to Stockholm we envisioned a warm and summery June weekend with delicious food and good company.
Au contraire, mother nature didn’t have the same idea in mind. We flew in at 6:30pm on Saturday night and, along with the other few hundred passengers on the plane, we displayed shock and horror when the pilot announced it was a mere six degrees outside. "Six? No! Surely not in summer… Maybe he said 16?"
Six degrees it was. And not only was it six degrees, it was also windy and raining. Just all round miserable. Our plans of cruising around the Stockholm archipelago on a sunny top deck of a boat were replaced by the reality of us huddling inside a boat cabin in scarves and jackets and bravely racing out onto the deck when we spotted something worthy of a photo.
But, as the song goes, two out of three ain’t bad, and we were lucky to have both superb food and great company.
I’d been looking forward to seeing one of my newly engaged Kiwi friends who’d followed her Swedish boyfriend home more than two years ago. They kindly offered us their lounge for the weekend, Tara greeted us with baked goods in the form of traditional Swedish saffron buns, and Chris charmed us with his cocktail making skills.
They were also in charge of the dinner reservations. Rolfs Kök, booked out even on a Sunday night, was clearly a popular restaurant and by the end of the night we could see why.
For starters we tucked into freshly baked bread rolls and a platter of cured meats and while Si went with the adventurous and sophisticated option of Red wine braised cheeks of ox with truffle for the main I very quickly settled on the fish ragout with shrimps, clams, cream and aioli after spying it at the table next to ours.
Both dishes were superb and the ox cheek was one of the most stunning dishes I have ever tried - the meat melts in your mouth and the rich dark sauce complimented it well. I had major food envy after stealing a bite from Si’s plate.
Now, it’s worthy to note that Stockholm is an expensive place, especially when it comes to dining out, so our 1,400 Krona bill for the table was actually very reasonable - particularly for such a high quality experience.
Also worthy of a quick mention is Köttbaren, which happens to be right across the road from Rolfs Kök. It’s a meat bar - doubling as a butchery and as a bar/restaurant.
We arrived for an impromptu meal late on Saturday night and expectantly had to wait twenty minutes or so for a free table in the busy restaurant. I was more than happy to sip on my drink and browse the shelves of delicious looking meats, sauces and spice mixes that were on display. If it weren’t for the hassle of customs I would have bought a whole trolley of things, including their homemade caesar salad dressing and truffle oil.
I also killed a bit of time staring at the blackboard menu trying to make up my mind. Everything sounded delicious -bolognese, roast beef and potato salad, pulled beef burger…
I finally decided to try the BBQ Pork sandwich, as pork isn’t something we often eat in our house and I’m a huge fan of BBQ flavours. I couldn’t fault it - the meat was tender, the sauce was rich, and the serving was huge. Si had the Oxchili & salsa fresca which had a good kick of spice and came with a basket of fresh bread for dipping. The prices were decent at Köttbaren - with the meals averaging around £15.
I’d heard Jamie Oliver sing praises about Swedish food in his “Jamie Does” series and I’m pleased I got to try it for myself. The restaurants we visited were definitely world class and produced some of the best dishes I’ve eaten in the year and a half that I’ve been living on this side of the world.
The city is magic with the beautiful scenery of the archipelago and the medieval old town - Gamla Stan. This part of Sweden is the most touristy, but also had some of the best cafes. We were pleasantly surprised with the quality of coffee in Stockholm and I particularly loved the cardamom rolls sold in many of the city’s bakeries.
Even the bad weather couldn’t sabotage our trip in the end and all in all our experience of Sweden was fantastic - filled with delicious food that I’ll be craving for a long time to come.