Scan Magazine, Issue 108, January 2018

Page 94

Scan Magazine  |  Restaurant of the Month  |  Denmark

Located in one of Copenhagen’s oldest buildings, Restaurant Puk offers guests a ‘hyggelig’, historic and quintessentially Danish experience.

Restaurant of the Month, Denmark

The past and present of Danish cuisine Set in one of Copenhagen’s oldest and most ‘hyggelige’ historic buildings, Restaurant Puk is the perfect place to experience the past and present of Danish cuisine. In the hands of chef Uffe Andersen, the restaurant has become known for its traditional Danish kitchen, where everything is made from scratch with high-quality ingredients. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Illa Bonany

For more than 250 years, guests have been dining and wining in Restaurant Puk’s atmospheric lower ground floor premises in the heart of the Danish capital. However, the quality might not always have been quite what it is today, with the restaurant now in the hands of chef Uffe Andersen. Raised on a farm in Denmark, Andersen is very much a stickler for high-quality produce and cooking methods that accentuate its goodness. And, while he acknowledges that traditional Danish cuisine might have been slightly side-tracked and outshone by New Nordic in recent years, he does not believe that this is due to the 94  |  Issue 108  |  January 2018

essence of the traditional cuisine, but rather the execution. “I feel like we are proof that traditional Danish cuisine still has a role to play in Copenhagen’s food industry. But I also believe that the fact that we make everything from fresh ingredients – that there’s no cheating – is key to our success. Because old-fashioned Danish cuisine where the red cabbage is straight out of a can is, quite frankly, unappetising; it doesn’t have anything to do with gastronomy,” he says. Indeed, the strong focus on quality combined with tradition has earned the restaurant a strong following, not just among tourists drawn in by the enthusi-

astic TripAdvisor reviews, but also among local couples and business people.

Traditions and expectations In 1539, the lower ground floor that today houses Restaurant Puk was the home of the Royal Brewery. Miraculously, the building survived the many fires of Copenhagen and, in 1750, the space was turned into a traditional tavern. Ever since, it has been known as a quintessentially Danish eatery serving food and drinks to kings and commoners throughout times – literally: in the late 19th century, King Christian VII and his mistress were among the regular guests. The long history and expectations that followed with it were convincing reasons for Andersen to carry on with the traditional Danish cuisine of the place. “We fully recognise the New Nordic movement, and that’s also a large part of what we do in our catering business, but when

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