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May 17, 2001 09:27 AM

sweden for chowhounds....

  • j

Dear chowhounds,
there has been very few comments made about the status of "chowhound venues" in sweden. It would be interesting to hear about your experiences from a european horizon. A lot of interesting stuff has happened in the 1990's and swedish chefs have received quite a recognition in the european cocking-competitions.

As I see it, one of the most peculiar resturant's in the 1990's has been the Petri Pumpa in southern sweden. Sometimes referred to as influenced by Ingmar Bergman due to their serious attitude, asceticism and grey scale look of the food on the plate. However, the resturant has been enourmously influential in the now general praise for "simplicity" that is guiding the chefs as well as the journalistic commentaries. As a reaction to the economic boom in the late 80's and glamourous eating Petri Pumpa was a vanguard in the revival and rediscovery of "low profile" ingredients such as root crops and cabbage.

What's around the corner? For chowhounds there is an upcoming younger generation of chef's, among others, Pontus Fritiof at Pontus in the Green House in Stockholm and Niklas Ekstedt at resturant Niklas in Helsingborg. These two might be on the verge of developing something really distictive of their own.

By all means I think you will find sweden, in a European perspective, quite priceworthy, at least outside Stockholm.


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  1. You write very well, Johannes. Are you a professional food writer? Which part of Sweden do you call home? (Parenthetically, I have relatives in the Stockholm area who I'd like to visit one of these days.)

    1 Reply
    1. re: Pan

      Thanks Pan! No, no, I'm not a journalist, just an ordinary restaurant-visitor enyoying my meal and paying the bill myself :-). Gothenburg (south-west) and Skåne (deep-south) would be my "home" regions. Bye the way, I'm now living in Staffordshire, England, and, yes, I have had a very nice, although expensive, meal at The Fat Duck. Just had to try out that restaurant. I do not agree with some of the commentaries on this forum about The Fat Duck. In my opinion, FD does not just work with very "focussed" tastes. There is a lot of complexity involved that does not create confusion but harmomy.
      I hope to have at least one more nice dinner before I leave England. For the moment my main contender is the merchant house but I've not decided yet.
      Do visit your relatives, and enjoy the thrilling Stockholm eating-scene. /Johannes