The CPH Crawl (IV): noma

As we thought to be back in our comfort zone after a bit of rock’n roll at The Paul, René surprised us completely. As we had all eaten there in the three days before (in shifts as we couldn’t organize another joint diner) there was not really much of the current menu or any classic dishes that he could serve us. So he went in a different direction…

Sitting in the bar/lounge area as the restaurant was fully booked he first had a snack of sea buckthorn which René frequently uses in his dishes. This one was jelly like yet fresh and a good start.

Sea Buckthorn

Wine was served blind – although I had the 2008 Arwen when I dined at nome the day before I guessed wrong. This is a wine named after René’s daughter grown on the Danish island Lilleø and elaborated in Germany – a fine blend of Solaris, Riesling, Silvaner and Sauvignon Blanc which was crisp, fruity and very vivid on the palate…

The we got cod milt, cucumber, dill jus and herbs. Milt (containing the fish sperm) or shirako is quite a delicacy in Japan which René visited recently. It is quite a challenge not to be put off by the sheer announcement of the dish but I bravely tried it (Steve didn’t: “I don’t eat sperm”). The milt was slowly poached, creamy and a bit like custard – its main contribution to the dish was clearly texture whereas it did add a slight veal-ish taste much less fishy than expected. All together the dish worked surprisingly well and I must admit I kinda liked it. And, the harmony of flavours and the freshness/rawness is really typical of René’s cooking…

Will I order it if on the menu? Maybe not in the first place…

Cod's Milt

The second dish was cod liver which turned out to be quite fishy. The jogurt-like cream and the berries balanced the dish a bit but this was somehow harder to eat than the cod milt.

Cod Liver (I)

Cod Liver (II)

So, how was this stop? Refreshing in terms of dramaturgy because both dishes where light and herbal. Typical because both dishes were really noma-esk. Brilliant as it showed that the mind plays an important role when it comes to actually taste a dish. Your expectations send some warning signs and it is hard to overcome your revulsion to try the milt – in the end it turns out to less problematic than the liver where your mind gives an ok straight ahead (well, if you like liver…). Interesting because even crazy foodies have limits when it comes to certain products. Memorable as I will still tell my grandchildren (when they are older;-) about this very night…

Thanks René and the whole team for this special dinner!

The Copenhagen Crawl is Coming Up

When I started reading the international food forums and blogs I almost immediately stumbled on Steve Plotnickis’ Opinionated About – the first post I read was about Steve’s brilliant dinner at Oud Sluis which forced me to go there this very year. A couple of posts later I read that chef Sergio Herman of this very restaurant had called Steve and asked for advice where to eat in New York. Finally, this ended up in Steve arranging the first restaurant crawl with him and Sergio eating at various important NYC restaurants on one night.

A bit later Steve met Jay Rayner who was about to write his book “The man who ate the world” and they discussed whether Jay could follow Steve while he was dining in New York. Inspired by the crawl with Sergio Steve finally proposed a NYC restaurant crawl in search for the perfect meal. The idea is simple: just assemble some of the best restaurants in town, think about their strength & weaknesses and then visit them one after the other which each serving some of the signature dishes. Setting is up, however, turns to be less that easy as Steve reported.

Since these 2007 events attention of the global food scene has moved north to Copenhagen where noma is maybe the brightest star and has a couple of very interesting brothers and sisters which are important in their own right (too bad that Geranium has closed their doors). So, quite naturally, Copenhagen would be ideal for a crawl and Laurent (from Gastros-on-Tour) and Trine (from Very Good Food) arranged the Copenhagen crawl: one city – one dinner – six guests – six restaurants…

The restaurant line-up for Feb 4:

– 17:45 : Kiin Kiin * –
– 18:30 : Herman * –
– 19:30 : The Paul * –
– 20:30 : Noma ** –
– 21:30 : MR * –
– 22:45 : Sollerod Kro * –

The foodie line-up:

– Very Good Food (Danish food blogger)
– High-End-Food (me;-))
– Food Intelligence (French food blogger)
– Opinionated About Dining (US food blogger and restaurant guide owner)
– Gastros on Tour (French food blogger)
– (Belgian restaurant webguide)

It will be very interesting to see how these restaurants show us their aspects of Nordic cuisine, how the different styles and dishes interact and complement each other and how the overal nordic ‘movement’ presents itself…

Stay tuned – besides on Facebook coverage will be provided on each blog…

Wonderful noma

Some reviews are harder, some are easier – after all the brilliant reports on noma by Trine, Laurent and many others what is left to be said? Fasten your seatbelts and prepare for one of the most remarkable and interesting culinary adventures available today… And don’t forget to clear your mind – it will be a quite different one not to be measured by usual standards…

noma stands for nordisk mad which basically means Nordic cuisine – that’s what noma is all about? The name already tells the story? As you will see it is more than that – more of a movement, a philosophy… All in all very thought-through but nevertheless very natural and not arranged…


noma (thanks to Trine)

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