One of the chefs in Copenhagen that we really like is Christian Puglisi, a Sicilian-born chef who moved to Denmark in the ’90s. Before this trip we had only dined at Manfred’s and it was the highlight of the visit. So this time we decided to try as many as possible…beginning with Bæst!
A few highlights from the Bæst website with their food philosophy:
A place where the best Danish, local, sustainable and organic produce is combined with Italian craftsmanship to create a unique dining experience. Made by hand and eaten by hand!
Instead of importing mozzarella, we make it ourselves with the best raw milk – from our 16 cows grazing at Farm of Ideas, just 50 km from the restaurant – and stretch it by hand several times a day.
A restaurant where pizza is made of local flour, gently fermented, then baked at blasting 500°C in a wood-fired, custom made oven, built for us in Naples.
Babette was recommended to us by a colleague for dinner. She had me at cozy little winebar, but peaked my interest even more when she told me they have a small but interesting and constantly changing menu and great pizza!
I did a bit more research and read that this is a chef’s favorite – that in the weekend you may find some of Stockholm’s most famous chefs enjoying a glass of wine! Babette was opened by three sommeliers and one chef, so it makes sense that wine is at the forefront of the menu. From Stockholm Food Stories, “Notably, the restaurant opened up in an old pizza joint and they have kept the pizza oven as the main cooking item – which of course adds an extra layer of complexity for Olle T Celltom when cooking the food. The pizzas are tasty, made with really good produce and innovative thinking when it comes to how to combine the quite classic Italian toppings on the pizza, and especially it is impressive to be abele to produce the pizzas in a standard pizza oven. One would have guessed that they like so many places would have flown in a oven from Naples, but no. This is your oven from the pizzeria on the corner.” So of course we had to split a pizza!
For our first meal in Stockholm, we headed to Meno Male (recommended by a Stockholm colleague) for a Neapolitan-style pizza. We were staying in Östermalm, the north-East neighborhood of Stockholm and were happy that it was a mere 5 minutes from our apartment!
They have a selection of pizzas to choose from or you can create your own. I have to say I’m not too daring when it comes to pizza, and ordered my favorite – spicy salami, mushrooms and red onions. I couldn’t wait to take my first bite when it came to us fresh from their giant pizza oven. Delicious!!
For my parents’ last night in Belgium we headed to one of our favorite places, Orso Pizzeria. Orso is located in Berchem, a small city in the province of Antwerp – but only 15 minutes away by tram, so not too far! It’s a small place where you definitely need to reserve ahead of time for a table. The pizza is super delicious and they serve their own naturally fermented wines!
I’ve been really fortunate the last few years to celebrate my birthday abroad – last year in Copenhagen, the two years previous in New York City – but with our upcoming trip to Japan, this year we kept it low key.
Because my mom was celebrating her birthday in Antwerp, of course we wanted to go out for dinner. I feel like over the years my parents have really gotten to know Antwerp the city, but not really Antwerp the province, which comprises of many smaller cities. For the birthday dinner we decided on Orso Pizzeria in Berchem. Berchem is most famous for its art nouveau style architecture. On our way to dinner we were able to look at all of the beautiful houses!
One tradition that started a few years back, is that when my mom is in town we go out for a class of champagne at Café Impérial. It doesn’t matter what time of year, we always go to celebrate. Café Impérial is a beautiful café located in the Paleis op de Meir, the former Antwerp residence of Napoleon Bonaparte. So fabulously French! And this time we were lucky enough to celebrate on my mom’s actual birthday!
This was my parents’ last day in New York. We had to part after breakfast, because they had tickets for the afternoon matches at the US Open. So we grabbed breakfast sandwiches from a street vendor to eat in Bryant Park. Afterwards we visited the New York Public Library, then met up with Christine and had lunch at the first pizzeria in America. Day 4 is also the day we transitioned from staying in Midtown with my parents to Chinatown with Christina!