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VÆKST — NEW NORDIC, VEGETABLE-FOCUSED DINING

VÆKST — NEW NORDIC, VEGETABLE-FOCUSED DINING

Walking into Vækst, you’ll almost certainly feel like you just stepped into a garden party. Strings of bulbs hang throughout, giving a yellow tint to the walls overgrown with greenery. Framed in the center of the space is a two-story greenhouse, setting the tone for the culinary magic at play here. A flowerpot with a base of goat’s cheese and baby garden veggies for dipping, fennel-seed buns accompanied by a wooden spatula to layer on the whipped butter, and a salad of vibrant tomatoes, prepared with ramsons, toasty almonds and a light sesame dressing, leave strong impressions with their delicate, floral notes and popping colors. Both the grilled beef tenderloin, with smoked marrow and tarragon sauce, and sprinkled with a concentrated white powder of yucca root, as well as the fried brill with Danish green peas and a fragrant mussel sauce, are highly recommended mains. A new star on the menu is the raspberry sorbet with dark chocolate clusters, fresh berries and pickled raspberry oil that’s vibrant and green. Just this summer, the restaurant group behind Vækst, Cofoco, announced that it was the first in Denmark to be entirely dependent on solar energy, producing 30% more energy than is currently used across its 13 restaurants. The future of Vækst is definitely looking very green. (Text: Victoria Pease / Photos: Chris Tonnesen)

Vækst, Sankt Peders Stræde 34, 1453 Copenhagen-Inner City; map
Mon-Sat 12-14.45h, Mon-Sun 17.30-24h

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CENTRAL HOTEL AND CAFÉ: ONE-ROOM PLEASURES IN VESTERBRO

CENTRAL HOTEL AND CAFÉ: ONE-ROOM PLEASURES IN VESTERBRO

Sometimes less is more – and Central Hotel and Café is a shining example of this truism. Tucked down a quieter street in Copenhagen’s lively Vesterbro neighborhood, this shoemaker’s workshop-turned-hotel has channeled all its energy into one beautifully-appointed room. The pocket-sized boutique has the feel of a sophisticated ship’s cabin, with built-in furnishings handcrafted by the owner himself, dark wooden beams and leafy green wallpaper. The amenities are also top shelf: a luxurious Eden bed, an in-room iPhone preloaded with handy local information and a stocked minibar. Whether you’re a guest or not: At the snug street-level café, cross your fingers for one of the four seats and enjoy coffee by Denmark’s The Coffee Collective alongside toasties, croissants and nostalgia-inducing milkshakes and banana splits. If you’re feeling adventurous, hop on a bike courtesy of the hotel and head to Mirabelle: an independent bakery and eatery owned by Noma-alumnus Christian Puglisi. Take a seat in the bold black-and-white tiled space and try their juicy rye and 68% chocolate croissants, all of which are naturally-fermented and organic. (Text: Victoria Pease / Photos: Jon Norstrøm, Mirabelle)

Central Hotel & Café, Tullinsgade 1, 1618 Copenhagen-Vesterbro; map
Café open Mon-Fri 8-17h, Sat 10-17h, Sun 10-16h

Mirabelle, Guldbergsgade 29, 2200 Copenhagen-Nørrebro; map
Mon-Sun 8.30-21.30h

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LA BANCHINA: SPRITZ, HARBOR VIEWS & A WOOD-FIRED SAUNA

LA BANCHINA: SPRITZ, HARBOR VIEWS & A WOOD-FIRED SAUNA

Wind down the afternoon with a visit to Copenhagen’s most relaxed waterside café. Located on the northern island of Refshaleøen and best accessible by bike (about 15 minutes from the center), La Banchina looks like an upscale surf shack – complete with a wooden pier, moored houseboats and a year-round sauna. The bar specializes in natural Italian wines and a must-try spritz that’s made with prosecco in place of straight up fizz and the organic aperitivo Rondo in place of Aperol. Started as a “Havnekneipe” (harbor pub) and transitioned into an eatery, more than anything the team behind La Banchina wants people to feel like they’re on vacation: With a no-reservations policy, no music outside (to better enjoy the birds and waves), an outdoor kitchen, and a barefoot-luxury vibe that has guests dangling one foot in the water with the other balancing a plate of oysters – we think there’s definitely something special in the air – and it’s not the subtle hint of algae. (Text: Victoria Pease / Photos: Anders Elmshøj, Eder Lopez Ponce)

La Banchina, Refshalevej 141A, 1432 Copenhagen-Refshaleøen; map
May-September Mon-Fri 8-23h, Sat-Sun 9-24h; October-April Mon-Fri 8-16h, Sat-Sun 9-16h

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THE BRIDGE STREET KITCHEN: GOURMET HEAVYWEIGHTS TO GO

THE BRIDGE STREET KITCHEN: GOURMET HEAVYWEIGHTS TO GO

Across from the bright facades of Copenhagen’s iconic Nyhavn waterfront and the Inner Harbour Bridge, find Copenhagen’s new meeting point of worldly flavors. Here, on the Greenlandic Trade Square, once the meeting point of fish merchants and traders, is where The Bridge Street Kitchen opened this summer. A collaboration between Copenhagen Street Food (formerly behind Paper Island) and the owners of Noma, the waterfront square brings together a mighty bunch of kitchens, bars and cafés that best represent Copenhagen’s gastronomic scene. From all-day porridge options by Grød, who serve a wonderful chicken congee with spring onions, peanuts and sesame oil, try also the poke bowl with marinated salmon, seaweed and pickled ginger at California Kitchen to really make the wait worth it during peak hours. There are also greasy-delicious burgers by Gasoline Grill, Michelin-recommended smørrebrødat at Palaegade, and four bars serving local brews and lemonade nestled within colorful beach house-style stalls. Grab your lunch to go and settle down on one of the many beer benches and lounge chairs while canal cruises and electric boats drift through the harbor. (Text: Victoria Pease / Photos: Martin Kaufmann)

The Bridge Street Kitchen, Strandgade 95, 1401 Copenhagen-Christianshavn; map
Mon-Sun 10-22h
Grød and The Coffee Collective Mon-Fri 8-22h, Sat-Sun 9-22h

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L.A. POKE — CALIFORNIA LIFESTYLE IN A BOWL

L.A. POKE — CALIFORNIA LIFESTYLE IN A BOWL

Craving a taste of California without leaving Berlin? L.A. Poke is the place. It’s not salty sea breezes on the menu, but rather the flavors of the big city. Poke, a dish of raw fish with all sorts of healthy toppings, was originally created in Hawaii but popularized in Los Angeles before taking the international culinary world by storm. And now, the poke trend has landed in Berlin too. At L.A. Poke, bowls are filled with a wide selection of wholesome, regional ingredients that diners can mix and match to their heart’s content. Founders Laura and Asif will be more than happy to share their recommendations for the perfect mix, from spicy tuna to fruity mango to intensely green wakame seaweed salad. In just four steps, your personal poke bowl will be ready to devour. It’s not only the bright and vivid bowl concoctions that are a treat for the eyes, but also the cheerful, feel-good colors of the interior design. Before drifting away in daydreams of California, make sure to try the house-made lemonade, with the refreshingly zippy taste of shiso herb and togarashi chili. (Text: Jasemin Uysal / Photos: Pamina Aichhorn)

L.A. Poke, Alte Schönhauser Str.44, 10119 Berlin-Mitte; map
Mon–Fri 12–22h, Sat 12.30h–22h

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