A guide to Copenhagen’s endless array of smørrebrød Take a dazzling, delicious (and maybe slightly schnapps-hazed) tour of Denmark’s national treasure: the open-faced sandwich, in all its various guises. by Alexandra Pereira
tep one: prepare to unbutton the top button of your trousers. Step two: leave your bike at your hotel because you will be convinced to enjoy more than a few glasses of schnapps during your lunch, at some places more than others. Step three: follow our guide below to discover which spectacular smørrebrød joint is for you. MOUTH WIDE OPEN We recommend making time in your vacation for more than one open-faced sandwich stop and leaving at least an hour or two to indulge. A French baguette outside Le Sacre Coeur this is not, nor a German bratwurst on the street before you hurry onto the next museum, smørrebrød is a great Danish tradition which is to be entertained and enjoyed at leisure with friends. You will see just as many aging gentleman smashing aquavit glasses over their smoked mackerel on rye at the city’s best traditional restaurants as you will see bustling tourists. ASIAN-FUSION WONDERLAND: ROYAL SMUSHI The newest of all smørrebrød spots is conveniently located right next to the Royal Porcelain Factory should you be hunting for a souvenir. This quirky and kitsch café takes English and Japanese traditions to a whole new level of a mashup, and serves up sushi-inspired afternoon tea in the form of Danish open-sandwiches including fresh and smoked salmon, traditional mackerel and yolk, tartare and delicious edamame and green side salads. Also on the menu are a smattering of fresh cakes and sweet pies, plus the traditional Danish dessert of cream and red berries rødgrød med fløde. Enjoy an Alice in Wonderland inspired decor of high ceilings and girlish charm. Crank up your afternoon tea with sparkling wine after a pot of Earl Grey. FIT FOR A KING’S GARDEN: ORANGERIET After a stroll in Kongens Have (the King’s Garden) and a peruse of the crown jewels at the Rosenborg Castle next-door, take a seat in this gorgeous, light-filled restaurant—the former orangery of the royals and also the former premises of famed new Nordic hotspot Geranium. The
WOW Power to the people
The newest of all smørrebrød spots is conveniently located right next to the Royal Porcelain Factory should you be hunting for a souvenir.
standard still remains high here: expect visual twists on traditional chicken and tarragon mayo which are served looking like works of art with delicate peels of apple and fresh herbs. Avocado and shrimps on rye and their curried herring also fly out of the kitchen. The poached pear with lemon thyme, blackberry sorbet and warm white chocolate foam dessert is a fantastic palate-cleanser, and all this seated in under heaters in the perfectly manicured garden, couldn’t feel regaler if you tried. THE ULTIMATE DELUXE GENTLEMEN (OR WOMEN)’S LUNCHEON: KRONBORG This inner-city dining room, with green and white checked tablecloths and immaculately dapper waiters is a Copenhagen institution for longstanding regulars and gastronomy connoisseurs the world over. Request to be served by the fantastic Ib, and outside on the
street so you can people-watch. Be ready for their epic “Gentlemen’s Lunch” with an empty stomach prepared for all the fried place and sweet remoulade, roast pork with apple sauce and fresh beef tartare with raspberries you can handle. Each mouthful will be punctuated with a different schnapps—homemade on site, I recommend the dill, then the horseradish as you move from seafood to meat respectively. Expect to roll yourself away and over the cobbles of this old, crooked, atmospheric street at least two hours later like a true gent. WINTER HYGGE: TOLD AND SNAPS Another traditional mainstay, candlelit and extremely hygge, and positioned conveniently close to the picturesque Nyhavn for all your boat-watching and theater-going. Told and Snaps is run by a legendary woman-about-town and serves up insanely good Norwegian salmon on