I’m just back from a trip to Stockholm, so prompted by a whole week of Scandinavian days I thought I could get online a few lines on my experience in the North and this post is going to be on all the restaurants we visited in town. We were with friends who live there and who know the city, thus we experimented every type of cuisine. So get your bellies ready because you will find quite a lot of food-wise ideas below!
First of all, any tourist visiting the city must be prepared for the cost of life which, at least for us Southeners, can look quite expensive at first. There are though, two little tips you might want to keep into consideration while flicking through pubs and bars looking for a place to eat:
- LUNCH: At lunch time many restaurants offer “Dagens”, i.e. set-menus with a main dish + a free drink (usually tea or coffee) ranging between 80-120kr (€8-12) per person.
- WATER: Anytime if you have something to drink or eat, all restaurants, pubs and cafés will serve you water for free. So if you want to save a few pennies while having your meal you can always go for water rather than for a normal drink.
TYPICAL SWEDISH FOOD:
Across the city there are plenty of restaurants and pubs serving typical Swedish food and particularly the famous Swedish meatballs with gravy, cranberry jam, sweet & sour cucumber and mashed potatoes. We generally had them while visiting around and hitting the main touristic attractions, but you can find them pretty anywhere. The places we tried:
- SJÖCAFEET: Right next to the Vasa Museet, this is a small café with tables placed next to the water for a nice view of Stockholm’s canals. Self-service – you can choose between pizza, meatballs and the menu-of-the-week specialities. Open 9am-10pm. // Prices: @ 150-200kr (€10-20) per person. // Address: Galärvarvsvägen 2, 115 21 Stockholm; Website: sjocafeet.se
- SKANSEN: One of the most famous attractions in Stockholm, Skansen is an open-air museum offering a number of restaurants and cafés which serve typical Swedish food. // Prices: Vary depending on the restaurant, our lunch menu was for less than 100kr (€10) per person // Address: Djurgårdsslätten 49-51, 115 21 Stockholm; Website: http://www.skansen.se/en
- Restaurants in Gamla Stan: if you fancy a really nice Swedish restaurant you just need to look for “Swedish restaurants in Gamla Stan” on Google and you will find a number a places across the whole island. This is the oldest and most touristic area of the city though, so food can be a little more pricey.
THAI: KOH PHANGAN
An explosion of colours in the quiet streets of Södermalm, this restaurant welcomes guests with fluo sunsets on the walls, colourful lanterns, exotic flowers and wild animals’ calls. We had a lovely thai dinner here enjoying good food while immersed in an unexpected and cheerful atmosphere. I definitely loved the whole set-up with tables placed in little and intimate corners floating on water and occasional indoor tropical storms hitting the restaurant (no worries, you won’t actually get wet!).
Prices: Main dish + shared starter + water @ 200-250kr (€20-25) per person
Main dish + starter + drink @ from 300kr above (€30)
Address: Skånegatan 57, 116 37 Stockholm; Website: http://www.kohphangan.se/
If you look for a nice Italian meal I would definitely recommend Vapiano. We used to love this chain when we lived in the UK and couldn’t forget to stop by for a visit. What I like the most about this place is the idea of a nicely cooked lunch/dinner with genuine ingredients which you can personally season with the fresh herbs (oregano, basil, rosmary) placed on your table as well as spread across the whole restaurant. Also, the atmosphere here is very relaxed and the staff very friendly.
Menu: Salads, pasta, risotto, pizza, bruschetta and desserts
Prices: @ 150-200kr (€15-20) per person
Address 1: Munkbrogatan 8, 111 27 Stockholm; Address 2: Götgatan 78, 118 30 Stockholm
Address 3: Kungsbron 15, 111 22 Stockholm; Address 4: Sturegatan 12, 114 36 Stockholm
On our last night out in Stockholm we wanted to go for something special that would spice up our dinner, thus our friends took us to Bollywood, in Vasastan. The restaurant is quite small and only has few tables available (better to book in advance on a week end) while the staff can be a bit “direct” with guests, but I swear this place is worth a visit ‘cause their cuisine is just amazing. I definitely have to mention my mango chicken tikka masala, a mixture of sweet and sour that honestly won my heart!
Prices: @ 150-200 kr (€15-20) per person
Address: Roslagsgatan 9, 113 55 Stockholm; Website: http://bollywoodindiancuisin.se/
BREAKFAST AND DESSERTS
SWEDISH AFTERNOON BREAK: VETE-KATTEN
Right in the middle of Norrmalm and very close to Stockholm’s High Street, in Vete-Katten we enjoyed a nice cup of tea with the very typical Swedish sweets. A vast choice of desserts is available and guests can try Kanelbulle (cinnamon roll), Kardemummabullar (cardamom roll), the Princess Cake as well as a number of other treats while immersed in the peculiar Alice-in-Wonderland atmosphere of this tea-room.
Address: Kungsgatan 55, 111 22 Stockholm; Website: http://www.vetekatten.se/
FRENCH: PETITE FRANCE
They say that French breakfasts rank amongst the best in the world, so on a Sunday morning we couldn’t miss a relaxed brunch at Petite France. Here, for a set-menu of 95kr (€9.50) you can have a cup of tea or coffee, an apple or orange juice, a chouquette, a granola yogurt and a sandwich of your choice. If you wish, cinnamon rolls, croissants, pain au chocolat and other sweet meals are also available (which sweet-loving Italians as we are cannot refuse, of course!).
Address: John Ericssonsgatan 6, 112 22 Stockholm; Website: http://www.petitefrance.se/
If you fancy a nice drink in town I would then recommend checking out the Scandic Continental’s rooftop bar Capital (quite posh but the view is gorgeous – Vasagatan 22, 111 20 Stockholm), the Icebar by Ice Hotel Stockholm (the whole bar is completely carved in ice – http://www.icebarstockholm.se/en/), the Soap Bar (http://www.soapbar.se/) and the Gården Bar & Grill (a nice outdoor bar with music and tables gathered in front of a dandelion-shaped fountain – gardenstockholm.se)
Finally, for the adventure-ready ones who want to hit the city and skip time&money-consuming restaurants, I recommend entering local stores such as ICA, Coop or Pressbyrån and go for packed meals such as ready salads, chicken or pasta for a lunch on the go.