Copenhagen: Exploring its Canals and Culinary Scene
Copenhagen is a vibrant city packed with culture and beautiful canals to explore. This capital of Denmark is known for its delicious Nordic cuisine, from traditional dishes to modern restaurant fare, as well as its historic canals that make an ideal spot for cruising and taking in the sights. Whether you’re traveling to the city for a short visit or an extended stay, it’s worth carving out time to take in Copenhagen’s canals and tantalize your taste buds.
1. Exploring the Winding Canals of Copenhagen
Copenhagen is a malt-scented mashup of narrow cobblestone streets, cozy canals, and fuel-injected culture. Exploring its many canals is an experience like no other, and it’s no surprise that the city has been named one of the most beautiful in northern Europe. A cruise through the city’s canals provides an up-close look at picturesque sights, like houseboats, bridges, and the city’s many beautiful buildings.
But it’s not all just tourism – Copenhageners are very passionate about their culinary scene, and during your tour, you’ll be able to sample some of the local delicacies. Here’s a list of must-try Danish treats:
- Smørrebrød – open-faced sandwiches featuring unique toppings like pickled red onions and smoked herring.
- Æbleskiver – round pancakes often filled with apples.
- Rugbrød – dense, dark rye bread that is typically served with cream cheese or jam.
And for those with a sweet tooth, nothing beats the famous Kanelsnegle (cinnamon rolls). Go beyond the tourist traps and take a cruise through Copenhagen’s winding canals to discover its unique culinary scene and stunning sights.
2. Discovering the Heart of Copenhagen’s Culinary Scene
Nestled in metropolitan Copenhagen lays a culinary landscape full of lavish canal-side restaurants and mom and pop eateries with a variety of options for even the pickiest of palettes. Exploring the canals of the vibrant city can be both tantalizing and overwhelming, which is why discovering the best culinary gems of Copenhagen is of the utmost importance.
1. On the Waterfront
The waterfront of Copenhagen is lined with a multitude of waterfront restaurants that provide diners with the chance to indulge in snacks and meals while taking in the sights and sounds of the harbour. From open-air cafes and bistros to upscale seafood and steak restaurants, exploring the waterfront of Copenhagen will definitely be a memorable experience.
2. In the City Centre
The city centre of Copenhagen is home to an eclectic mix of restaurants, cafes, bakeries, and bars that provide a great variety of cuisines from all of the world. From hearty Nordic dishes to Mexican tacos, anything you might be craving can be found in the city centre of Copenhagen. The local hipster cafes that feature freshly brewed coffee and delicious pastries are also not to be missed.
3. Taking a Food Tour
If you want to get an in-depth look at all the local eateries and truly take in all the tastes of the city, taking a food tour is the way to go. There are plenty of tour companies that provide guided tours of the best eateries in the city as well as historical information about the area. Most tours also include tastings of authentic local dishes.
4. Going Beyond Copenhagen
There are places beyond the city of Copenhagen that offer amazing culinary experiences as well. A train ride away from the city are small seaside and countryside towns, each with their own special dishes. Exploring the small fishing villages outside of Copenhagen can be especially rewarding, as they offer a great variety of freshly caught seafood.
3. Exploring the Multitude of Cuisine Options
Copenhagen’s culinary culture has undergone a revolution in the past decade. Tourists and locals alike are in for a treat when it comes to trying a unique variety of flavors. From modern Scandinavian taste sensations to traditional Danish favorites, there’s something to tickle every palette.
The city’s numerous Michelin-starred restaurants are excellent choices for a gastronomic adventure. Noma has been awarded the honor of being named the world’s best restaurant four times. Both fine dining and casual eateries are available in the city for food lovers seeking culinary experiences. Fresh, local ingredients are used to create dishes from all over the world.
The must-try cuisines include:
Regional delights can be found at traditional Danish eateries. This includes flavors like smoked salmon, pickled herring, and potatoes with meat. Copenhagen’s hippest venues serve up shareable, small-plate menus, allowing guests to sample many dishes and tastes. Local breweries have increased the variety of beer for beer lovers.
Vegetarian and vegan restaurants are popular, providing delicious plant-based options. Bakeries serving pastries from around the world make for a perfect snack. For sweet tooths, chocolatiers offer handmade artisan treats.
4. What to Eat and Drink in Copenhagen
Copenhagen is situated by the sea, and its natural resources can be seen on the dinner plates of the local restaurants. Open-faced sandwiches and numerous types of fish dishes are some of the traditional foods to try. Herring, salmon, and mackerel are some of the more popular fish found in the area. Restaurants also offer other seafood dishes like shrimp and cod.
Coffee and Pastries
When in Denmark, don’t leave out experiencing coffee and pastries. There is an excellent range of coffee beverages such as latte, cappuccino, and espresso. One of the most popular local pastries is the kanelsnegle, which is a cinnamon roll filled with cream and almonds. Smørrebrød is also popular, which is a variety of open-faced sandwiches with various toppings including shrimp and eggs.
For a sample of more traditional Danish meals, bring a hearty appetite for dishes such as stegt flæsk (pan-fried pork) and frikadeller (meatballs), as well as red cabbage and potatoes. And no trip would be complete without tasting the area’s signature dish, smørrebrød. It is an open sandwich, served on rye bread, with various toppings and accompaniments like smoked salmon, shrimp, mayonnaise, and boiled eggs.
Copenhagen is home to some of the best microbreweries in the world. Carlsberg is a notable local beer, and other popular beers are Tuborg, Søgaards Bryghus, and Amager Bryghus. They range from light to dark lagers and wheat and malt beers to a variety of fruit and specialty brews. For something a little harder, Aquavit and snaps are the preferred choices.
5. Where to Find the Best Meal Experiences in Copenhagen
Copenhagen’s culinary scene dishes up something delectable to tantalize everyone’s taste buds. Whether you want to sample classic Danish dishes like smørrebrød, follow a food trail sampling some of the city’s best restaurants, or take a canal tour with foodie pit stops along the way, you can be sure to come away feeling full and content. Here are five places to find the best meal experiences in Copenhagen:
- Restaurant Barr: For a classic smørrebrød experience paired with a few modern twists, Restaurant Barr in the Vesterbro neighborhood is your go-to destination. Hearty and traditional, this eatery serves up its signature Danish open sandwiches with a rustic yet contemporary sensibility. There’s an extensive selection of toppings to choose from including shrimp salad, pickled herring, roasted pork, and others, with a range of drinks to complete the experience.
- Nomad: Enjoy a true culinary journey with Nomad’s five-course tasting menu. Using only the freshest seasonal ingredients, dishes here range from creative takes on traditional recipes to brand new ideas. All of this wow factor comes in a minimalist, industrial-chic setting that’s perfectly complemented by Nomad’s rustic yet sophisticated approach to Nordic cuisine.
- Bryghuset Canon: Located in the trendy Vesterbro area of Copenhagen, Bryghuset Canon is a lovely spot serving up both classic and modern Danish dishes. This vibrant restaurant features a beer and cider tap, a tasty selection of cocktails, and hearty house-made dishes like smørrebrød, risotto, and wild boar. And don’t forget their selection of delicious desserts.
- Tivoli: For a truly unique meal experience, look no further than Tivoli. This vibrant amusement park is home to a variety of different eating spots full of character, from international restaurants to street food markets. Ideal for families and children, this is a great option for those seeking a fun and delicious dining experience.
- Canal Tours: To top off your foodie adventure, take a canal tour along Copenhagen’s beautiful waterways. With a range of tours to choose from, you can experience the city from a new perspective while indulging in a culinary feast with on-board tastings during the trip. From traditional Danish delicacies to modern fusion dishes, you have plenty of options to satisfy your appetite as you sail the canals of Copenhagen.
6. Insider Tips for Enjoying the Culinary Scene in Copenhagen
Copenhagen is a mecca for food lovers. Whether you are seeking an exotic Danish dish or looking for old-world charm, you will find it here. Here are some helpful tips to experience the best of Copenhagen’s culinary scene:
- Try Traditional Dishes: Copenhagen is home to some of the most iconic dishes in Denmark. Do your homework ahead of time and discover what dishes are traditional in the city. Indulge in the local delicacies like open-faced sandwiches, aebleskivers, and smørrebrød.
- Visit Markets: Visit Bopa Plads and some of the other markets around Copenhagen to pick up freshly caught seafood and quality groceries. Immerse yourself in the local atmosphere and stock up on food so you can prepare your own delicious dishes.
- Mix with Locals: Copenhagen’s vibrant food scene is made even more enjoyable when enjoyed with locals who can define the culture and traditions. Ask locals for recommendations on where to eat and get the chance to experience some of the best-hidden gems the city has to offer.
- Explore Beyond Copenhagen: Copenhagen is the perfect starting point to explore some of the unique Danish food found throughout the country. Go on a culinary road trip and be sure to sample dishes like flaeskesteg, stegt flaesk and sild. Try something new and enjoy the diverse flavors of Danish cuisine.
With these simple tips, you will get the most out of your time in Copenhagen and the culinary experience that awaits you. Ready to explore? Pack your appetite and take a bite out of Copenhagen’s food scene. Whether you’re looking to take a relaxing boat ride or sample some of the best culinary delights in Europe, Copenhagen is a destination that’s sure to take your breath away. From its emerald green canals to its vibrant culinary scene, anyone who visits the city will be left feeling marvelously refreshed and relaxed. So head over to Copenhagen and immerse yourself in the city’s unique offerings. You won’t regret it.