I think Copenhagen is my favourite city in Scandinavia. Well, all things considered, Stockholm’s archipelago is not bad either. And the fjord of Oslo: lovely! Hum, what I mean is… I love Scandinavia! But seriously, Copenhagen is really a nice town. If you move away from Strøget, the main pedestrian street, you will quickly get the feeling that Copenhagen is indeed one of the few Western capitals that still are ‘liveable’. With a bit more than a million inhabitants, Copenhagen is undeniably a regional centre of culture and business, but it has somewhat successfully managed to keep a human, laid-back side and is one of the world’s most environmentally (and bicycle) friendly cities, which suits me quite well.
Last time I went to Copenhagen was when my friend Marion had just started her raw food diet and told me all about it. I had heard about Raw 42 so I decided to give it a try while I was there. How strange, although highly enjoyable, to see that the vegan establishment is popular and appreciated by all sorts of people, from elderly couples to student groups. While you might expect raw food in a hippish, cheap kind of place, Raw 42 is modern, trendy and centrally located. It is possible (and slightly cheaper) to take away, but you might want to eat in and enjoy the creative sitting. The menu, almost uniquely composed of salads, is in Danish but my humble knowledge of Swedish was enough to help me. I chose the ‘crudités/almonds’ salad (fennel, carrots, baby spinach, cress, almonds and dates). When I saw that the people next to me had taken the tomato and avocado one, I almost regretted my choice. Not for long though: probably one of the best salads I ever had, and although I didn’t expected it, pretty filling. The funny thing is I normally hate dill, and I realised too late there was some in the salad, but my! It was freaking delicious, and this salad is now part of my favourite recipes. While you might find it a bit pricey, it is still reasonable for Copenhagen and the experience is enjoyable. The products are fresh and mainly organic.
If you happen to be in intriguing Christiania, this is the one place you have to go. You can chose to sit in the rustic and cosy interior, or outside if the weather allows it. I went there for lunch on a Saturday and the staff had just finished preparing the food when I arrived. As it is a cooperative, the staff changes every week, as does the quality of the food depending on the cook. I have to say I got very lucky when I went there, as I had one of the best soups ever – if not the best. It was a simple but flavoursome vegetable soup (potato, carrot, parsnip, celery and ginger) served with bread. The salads were mouth-watering but I was quite full already, so I decided to be reasonable and finished my meal with a homemade masala chai. Probably my favourite place in Copenhagen: great location, great atmosphere, great prices and great quality (98% of the products are organic).
Cafe N, Blågårdsgade 17
A small but cosy place, with a friendly atmosphere (and staff!), where you can get Copenhagen’s best veggie burgers and homemade fries. I definitely recommend it!
Den Gronne Kaelder, Pilestaede 48
Another place for fresh but somewhat expensive food: here you can choose between several soups, sandwiches and plates. Quality is good without being exceptional. To be honest, the only thing I liked was the intimate atmosphere that the restaurant provides.