Back to Stockholm
On the high end Operakällaren is the poshest, great food, great service, great wine list, one of the most beautiful restaurant rooms in the world, but expensive. Fredsgatan 12 is a great place for modern cooking with influnces from Southwestern US (duck liver tacos!), Spain and Asia. You absolutely have to order their antipasto which is actually a sampling dish with 5-7 small courses, none Italian. It even has a Michelin star. Its sister restaurant called Restaurangen is a cheaper hipper place to try the same style of cooking. You can even sit at the bar. Pontus in the Green House is the placve for power dinners with a brand new tasting menu every night. Also expensive. But with the current exchange rate, no extra tax and service included in the prices you may get out cheaper than similar style and quality places in place like New York, Paris or London. Just keep away from hard liquor like Martinis and remember that you only need to leave about 10-20 sek (1 to 2 dollars) in tip per person unless the service was extraordinary in which case you may want to go to 5-10% of the bill. But never 15-20% as at least a 12% tip is included in the prices on the menu.
Mike, did you ever check out this place I suggested last time you asked? See link below.
If you did eat there...or elsewhere...post notes if you have a sec, ok? More tip-strewn conversation may smoke out more Swedish (or Sweden-traveling) chowhounds, all for the greater chow good.
How expensive is Sweden these days? I was there in about 89, and it was frightful.
re: Jim Leff
Not much in the way of chowhounding on this trip. Too busy with work even to grab a beer most nights. I did return to Halvtrappa Plus Gard, which is pretty well known place near the Stureplan. I had a really good appetiver there - chopped "scallop tartare" on a thick oval of smoked salmon, topped by a fresh basil leaf and tomato salsa. The main courses were also quite good, and I didn't have anything this time which made me think the chef was trying too hard to work just one more flavor into each dish. I also went to a place called Primo near the Radhuset T-station. Good Italian/Swedish fusion. Another really good scallop app there - hazelnut crusted, I think fried. And a fresh pasta with shellfish (mussels, shrimp, and I am pretty sure I found some crawfish tails in there) and spinach. I returned there a couple times - Reasonable prices and proximate to my hotel. Also had a pretty good pizza and some tasty lamb chops. The tapas at Mera, around the corner from Halvtrappa, were not great, but I was drawn back on account of making friends with the bartender, which came in handy as the bar turned into one of the late-closing-time night clubs.
I did not ferret out the cafeteria downtown - Most of my lunches were spent in the various Stockholm suburbs, and by dinner most evenings I was too wiped out to try and really dig around for anything new.
Stockholm is expensive, but the exchange rate is pretty favorable to the dollar right now: 10 kroner, as opposed to the 8 or so last time I was there.