Restaurant of the Month
Bror Ditlev combines a passion for gourmet with eco-friendly produce.
Restaurant of the Month, Denmark
Oh brother! That tastes good! Great food, fine wine and an informal atmosphere have built the reputation of one eatery in southern Denmark. But Bror Ditlev (‘Brother Ditlev’) in Kolding is also committed to using local, seasonal, free-range produce. By Karen Gilmour Kristensen
Photos: Flying October
Behind the restaurant is a team of young, skilful people with a shared interest in fine dining. What started as a hobby project has turned into a renowned gourmet restaurant with quality at its heart. “Our menu is simple, but with a French touch,” says spokesperson Rasmus Vemmelund. “We aim for piquant flavours, not bland ones.” Flavours play a huge part when matching dishes with suitable wines. The wine and food pairing is a key element at Bror Ditlev, and it’s done very carefully by Vemmelund. However, there’s no reason to dress up before spending the evening at this es110
tablishment. Vemmelund and his team strive to create a casual atmosphere in which everyone feels welcome – something that sets the restaurant apart from others in the fine dining sector. “We need to do things the way we want to, even if running a more formal restaurant would be safer,” Vemmelund reflects. “Our hearts must be in this, otherwise the end product won’t be good.” Sustainable agenda When putting together the menu at Bror Ditlev, most of the produce needs to be local, in season and tasty. “We try to keep 95 per cent of our produce Danish,” says Thomas Dissomma, head chef. “Moreover, we try to keep it as local as possible.”
Keeping it local means collaborating with nearby hunters. Since Bror Ditlev brands itself as a sustainable fine dining restaurant, it avoids industrial meat altogether. Instead, it mainly relies on wild meat as its source of protein – with some flexibility. “When there is no wild meat in season, we use lamb instead,” says Dissomma. “It comes from a CO2 neutral farm, on which the animals can roam around freely. To us, it’s important that the produce we use has had a good life. We won’t use animals that have been raised on industrial farms and never seen daylight.” Besides caring for the produce, Bror Ditlev’s sustainable agenda also covers the protection of the environment. When using fish and seafood from the Danish seas, the restaurant specifies to its suppliers what sort of produce they want. “We use line-caught fish only, and we want our scallops to be picked by hand,”