One of the things I was most looking forward to trying in Copenhagen was the New Nordic cuisine the country has become famous for following the ‘Noma revolution’.
The trend has now extended far beyond Rene Redzepi acclaimed restaurant and many great little places have started focusing on slow, locally-sourced food & imaginative combinations of flavours.
If you failed to secure a table at Noma, your next best option to experience this new way of gourmet thinking is Geist.
Minutes away from the ever-crowded harbour, at the back of a quiet courtyard, lined with dark wood, low lighting and gorgeous vintage glasses, Geist is an absolute gem of a restaurant.
It’s busy and intimate, elegant and cosy, trendy and relaxed.
A whole world of oxymores, that shouldn’t work and yet, somehow, do.
The menu, a sort of ‘a la carte’ tasting menu, works much in the same way.
And choosing proved much easier with a couple of cocktails at hand.
Front: Lemon in lemon in lemon, a refreshing combination of gin, lemon juice, orange blossom water and other citrusy bits).
Back: Mezcal sour, a Mexican-inspired, smokey take on a classic.
Both perfectly mixed, very creative and very much at the image of the food to come.
Starting with Grilled avocado with green almonds and curry.
Creamy avocado, crunchy green almonds & the exotic yet subtle taste of curry powder…
Such a simple combination, yet one I had never tried before but will not make the mistake of forgetting now that I have!
Beautiful, wafer-thin Tartar of Norway lobster with yuzu and hibiscus.
Silver onions with tamari, ginger, lime and sesame.
Crunchy, Asian-inspired, slightly pickle-y, they made for the perfect bridge-dish between the light, fresh options that preceeded and the deeper, more savoury ones to come.
The first of which was the very essence of surf & turf: Scallops and chicken wings with browned butter.
Sweet and soft atop crunchy & umami and finger-licking good!
The last savoury dish was a bit more of a traditional one: Carrots with young pigeon and mustard.
Perfectly cooked, game-y pigeon breast, topped with a honey-mustard sauce and served alongside some sweet pickled carrots and roasted legs as a little snack on the side.
Needless to say, those disappeared before I was even done taking pictures of the food!
…and the rest didn’t last long either, which is just as well as it allowed us to move onto the best part of the meal.
Now, it’s no secret that I’m rather partial to pudding, but Geist took things to a whole new level of sweets’ paradise with some madly brilliant dishes.
Salted wasabi cream toffee.
Unexpected, challenging, and very much the sort of dish that makes your brain work as much as your tastebuds.
At first, you get hit by the powerful, almost mustard-y taste of wasabi and you go ‘na-ah, this really wasn’t meant to be’. But the next second, the sweet, creamy, slightly salted caramel takes the lead and before you know it, you’re going back for more…
The same was also true for our second dessert, Vanilla ice cream with blueberries and black olives.
Even though this time, the experience sort of went backward; things start in a much less aggressive way with the familiar notes of vanilla, followed by the slight acidity of the blueberries and right at the end a subtle yet unmistakable richness of black olives.
A beautiful combination indeed.
In true Danish fashion, we ended things up with coffee…
… and some lemon cotton candy! Best petit four ever? I (and my inner 5-year-old) sure think so!
Absolutely wondaneful from the beginning ’til the end & definitely one for the Copenhagen bucket list!
Geist, Kongens Nytorv 8, 1050 København, Denmark
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