Where to go for Old School Lunch in Copenhagen
Aamanns Etablissement // www.aamanns.dk
Adam Aamann pioneered the new wave of “smørrebrød” in Copenhagen. He is modernizing the tradition, finding new ways of presenting the food. More importantly though, he is a fantastic developer of the craftsmanship, always seeking out new kinds of fish, experiments with wild herbs, creative pickling and a clear dedication to the ambition of creating a Nordic food language. But if you are one of those who thinks, that sometimes the top gastronomes in Scandinavia are making too mild a cuisine, lacking intensity in taste, Adam will show you a different direction in Nordic cooking, knocking your socks off with concentrated flavors. His food is both traditional and innovative at the same time.
Schønnemanns // www.restaurantschonnemann.dk
Old school is often the only school: Schønnemanns is a place that does it the old fashioned way. Once a slumbering place, it was turned around a few years back and is now amongst the top places for a smørrebrød lunch in Copenhagen. It looks the same though: a traditional cellar, heavy waiters with a tone like a master sergeant, long list of classical interpretations and no nonsense servings. This is a traditional place that has kept the atmosphere of en everyday lunch restaurant unimpressed by modern ventures in gastronomy or interior decorating. Try the fried, smoked eel with scrambled eggs on rye bread – it’s addictive. Most of the time you’ll dine with Copenhageners meeting for working lunches or catching up on old acquaintances.
Gammel Mønt // www.gammel-moent.dk
The place that was there all along – a place for traditional gastronomy, classic haute cuisine dominated by Danish seasonal foods at night, and during the day possibly one of the best lunch restaurants in Copenhagen, also serving several of the open sandwich classics. The charismatic patron, weighing past the scale of most weights, is a walking advertisement for his own kitchen. He has won several awards for his traditional pickled herrings, taking pride in setting the standard for traditional quality. The restaurant is located in an old brothel, one of the oldest and protected buildings of Copenhagen. It is often uniquely decorated by the finest artists of the town that also eats here regularly, since the chef, Claus Christensen, has sponsored many talents since college and is running a gallery for contemporary art along side his passion for fish, wild mushrooms and some of the most concentrated sauces you’ll ever taste. His fried plaice is absolutely untouchable. Gammel Mønt is connoisseur’s place, but not for health fanatics overly concerned with their cholesterol count.
Orangeriet // www.restaurant-orangeriet.dk
A beautiful old green house in the middle of the preferred recreational parks in Copenhagen, at summer filled with sun craving young people. Jasper Kure is a former Danish competitor at the Bocuse d’Or championships, where he came in at fourth place in 2009. He virtually grew up in the neighborhood and always dreamt of getting this charming and bright restaurant for himself. He has been a chef at several of the top restaurants in the city, and it’s a rare thing that a chef with a top gastronomy profile like Jasper is giving attention to “smørrebrød” which he interprets in his own style. This is a place where decorative and modern haute cuisine lives alongside the classic lunch. Orangeriet is great place for feeling the essence of Nordic gastronomy, which arcs both a working class tradition like open sandwiches and ambitious gastronomy.