Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Foodie tour of Stockholm

We had a little mini-break in Stockholm last weekend. Though there was nothing little about the ambition that went into planning our day there... Over the years I've spent a lot of time in there whereas for The Boy Next Door this was the first trip in nearly two (!) decades!





See, a day in Stockholm- cruise actually only means 6,5 hours in Stockholm. I'd planned the day so rigorously there were only two roughly 15-minute-windows for any kind of "relaxation", "kicking back" and "holidaying" - even those by a sheer accident. I'm starting to realize why I usually travel alone... even Goebbels would probably make better company!

But there is a lot to see and experience (and eat!) in Stockholm. Street food is having a major moment here, too and the closest food trucks in the abundant offering can be found on hittatrucken.se.





Usually (no matter what I've had for breakfast and especially on board MS Gabriella's Food Garden I had a lot... of everything) I'd normally start my day in a rather perverse fashion with a tunnbrödsrulla. See, this little guilty pleasure of mine is usually what the Swedish party-goers finish their alcohol-fuelled evenings off in the early hours of the morning. They are available at just about every kiosk - Valhallagrillen for instance is a bit of a legend. It's local flatbread rolled and stuffed with mashed potatos, sausages (two; grilled - not boiled!), shrimp salad and crispy roasted onion. And ketchup and mustard of course. Every bit as sinfully wrong delicious as it sounds!


We started our tour in Södermalm - how else. Stockholm is much like London (another favourite of mine!) in that it consists of different neighbourhoods, each with a lively village-like atmosphere and loads of great little local restaurants and shops and all things cute. Wonderfully bohemian and laid-back Södermalm has risen to international fame among the travellers and especially its SoFo (area South of Folkungagatan) has plenty of cafes, boutiques, restaurants and vintage shops to keep one busy for the whole 6,5 hours.


But, if you're short on time, head over to Nytorggatan, home to for instance this adorable little old-fashioned RE Oriental Mataffär.







Fika (a coffee break over a freshly baked pastries) is another local institution. We had our first one at String, one of the many funky cafes on the street. On weekends most of them offer an affordable breakfast buffet/ brunch ( SEK 8 over here).





Right next door there's Pärlans Konfektyr that sells hand-made toffee. Insanely good! Like, absolutely every single one of them! But if you can only manage a few, make those vanilla and sea salt, cardamom... and salty liquorice.






"Life is too short for bad meatballs" is the founding principle of another Nytorggatan resident: Meatballs. As the name suggests, they are specialized in meatballs. Good meatballs. Made of beef, salmon, reindeer, calf, game... you name it. Our choice? Wild board with tarragon. Delish.






If you do have time (and the energy) to venture out of SoFo, Östermalm is another good address. For their market hall alone. Counter after counter heaving with fresh produce, charcuterie and fish and seafood I never find back home. This is my idea of Heaven!







Between shopping stop for a glass of wine and continue for lunch at massively popular Lisa Elmqvist (show up early or be prepared to join the queue!) who serves fresh fishy treats from their own shop along with an impressive selection of aquavits. Or, feast on Middle Eastern treats over at Beirut Café (can't go wrong with sambosek lahme and lahm badjin!)





Just around the corner from market hall you'll also find Ladurée, home to macarons I just can't seem to be able to say "no" (or "nej" or "ei" or "non" or "nein") to. Aaaaah-mazing. Especially my perpetual favourite: caramel au fleur de sel. 

And though I might occasionally claim I'm not one for sweets... there's a chance that's not entirely true. Also located in Östermalm, at Sturegalleria shopping centre there's also Gateau, bakery that is home to divine florentines and walnut brownies. 







And in case either one of us was still hungry after all this... we had reservations for brunch!  Yes, for real. Loves to eat, lives to eat... But hey, more on that in the next post!

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ANYONE FOR SECONDS?



      




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