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Sep 26, 2010 07:47 AM

Bergen, Norway

Will be in Bergen, Norway this coming weekend for 2 days. Staying near the fish Market. Heard food is very expensive there.

Any suggestions of cafe's, Lunh and dinner places in the area? Since we are only there for 2 days, we'd like to try foods we can't get here in London or local specialties.

Thanks in advance.

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  1. Is this really the only post on Bergen on the Europe board? That's all that came up in a search at least. Help appreciated for finding decent meals that don't cost and arm and a leg. For one nicer meal, I was thinking of going to Wesselstuen or Smauet Mat & VInhus, thoughts? We ended up finding a guest house for WAY cheaper than the hotels so have some more leeway with meals but still looking for deals. Thanks in advance.

    13 Replies
    1. re: Joanie

      I've emailed my friend who lives in Bergen. will try to get some names.

      1. re: Joanie

        Her reply:

        For something traditional Norwegian that is not too expensive I would have to say Pigvinen. It's not fancy, but has a really good atmosphere and serves food that is very typically Norwegian, like your favourite dishes from your grandmother's kitchen-type. Good for lunch, dinner, or drinking at night, serves food from 1 p.m until 2 a.m. I don't know anyone who doesn't like it there. :)



        If they are going to be here THIS weekend, the weather is supposed to be wonderful so I'd suggest they go to USF Verftet, which is the best place in town to have lunch (or dinner) outside in the sun. It's an old sardine factory which now houses venues for concerts, theatre, art shows, etc, and a restaurant. It's right by the water, but away from the tourist crowds around the fish market, and to get there you go through one of the older neighbourhoods in town with little narrow cobblestone streets and little white wooden houses. You can walk there easily (you can walk most places within the city centre in Bergen in less than 30 minutes) but I'd suggest they get a map so they don't get lost. The address is Georgernes Verft 12 (?).

        If they are willing to spend a little more, they should have dinner at Spisekroken. The food is amazing, local and seasonal, so the menu changes all the time. Perfect for a romantic date.

        Cornelia is a very good place to go for seafood, it's located in Kjøttbasaren which is right across from the fishmarket. "

        Naboen is one of my favourite places to eat and drink, they have a restaurant upstairs and pub (which serves less expensive food) downstairs. Some traditional dishes. Address is Sigurdsgate 4.

        For cafés one of my favourites is Bar Barista. Good for coffee, smoothies, sandwiches, cakes, it's cosy with books, boardgames, a jukebox, etc, and again you get away from the worst tourist crowds. Stølegaten 8 (a few hundred metres behind Bryggen).

        Otherwise the best coffee in town is probably to be found at Det Lille Kaffekompaniet at Nedre Fjellsmauet 2. Find where the funicular goes from (Fløybanen) and walk up the steps on the right side of the station, and then it's right into a little side street to the right.

        Also on the same street as the funicular station is Godt Brød, which sells wonderful organic bread, sandwiches, etc.

        There are also some nice cafés in a little street called Skostredet.

        They should stay away from places like Egon, Peppes, etc, unless they want tasteless American dishes (the interiors of these places are traditional and quite cosy so you could easily be fooled)."

        Hope this helps

        1. re: Joanie

          She also added:

          "To Kokker (Enhjørningsgården 29), Smauet Mat & Vinhus (Vaskerelvsmauet 1), and Potetkjelleren (Kong Oscars gt. 1A)."

          1. re: atomeyes

            Nice, thanks a lot. Will add this to my info and check web sites. We're not there til Aug. 25 for 4 nights. What does she think of Wesselstuen? i want to try reindeer. If she's up for it, I'm happy to chat by email: joanie at wmbr dot org.

            This post now makes 3 times the info on Norway on this board.

            1. re: Joanie

              not sure if she'd be the type to exchange email, but I'll ask.

              and I'd assume that a fair # of Norwegian restaurants would sell reindeer (unless its seasonal)

              1. re: Joanie

                She hasn't been there for years and said she hears its so-so

                1. re: Joanie

                  I think my friend saw you walk by. she recognized you from your blog. she was kind of shocked and didn't say hi.
                  kind of funny

                  1. re: atomeyes

                    Are you kidding? I just got back Sunday (after also going to Tromsø and Oslo), where would this have been? I certainly was all over town and will write up the report soon. If she really saw me, she def. should have said hi but I have a feeling it'd be hard to recognize someone from a web site (the site?)

                    1. re: Joanie

                      sorry. also posted that in your Norway review.
                      she sent me a msg saying she swears you walked by her, and yes, it was from the small pic from your blog.

                      1. re: atomeyes

                        Hopefully she or you enjoyed the review. Maybe it was too long for people to deal with.

                        I also was thinking you posted that she saw me on Aug. 25 and it would have been odd that she saw me on my first day in town. Not impossible tho, that day I ran into someone who knew me thru a Seattle friend, so it is indeed a small world.

                        Now I just need to deal with the credit card bill from this expensive trip.

                2. re: atomeyes

                  All good recommendations above! Especially Naboen, Cornelia and Verftet are excellent.

                  I will add "Jacobs Bar&Kjøkken", our favourite place for both food and wine. Affordable (by Norwegian standards; you get a 3-course meal with wines by the glass for under 1000 kr.)


                  "Colonialen" should also be checked out. It's a "deli", a cafe and a fine restaurant, all in one great place. Excellent sandwiches! It's located across the street from the park in front of the theatre, around the corner from Wesselstuen.


                  The Cafe Opera close by is a student favourite, good atmosphere, good coffee, and affordable lunch dishes.


                  You ask about Wesselstuen. I love the place, but usually don't eat there. Food is ok, but nothing special. Can't comment on Smauet mat&vinhus, because it's been years since my last visit.

                  Hope this is helpful!

                  1. re: MrsQuesne

                    Thanks for those suggestions, will look into them esp. Jacobs. When you say you love Wessel but don't eat there, do you just get drinks there or what? Thanks.

                    1. re: Joanie

                      Yes, we usually just go for drinks at Wessel. It's a great place to spend a few hours with friends.

              2. There is seriously good food to be had in Bergen. I was taken by Norwegian hosts a couple of years ago to Hanna Pa Hoyden, a slow food/locavore restaurant that provided a memorable dinner. The chef only uses ingredients from Norway (foreswearing, e.g., the use of garlic as it is not native to the country). Whatever one thinks of such purism, it is in this instance the basis for creative, ambitious and--the key thing--delicious cooking, especially notable for seafood. "Wines" are, as I recall, made from fruits other than grapes (see garlic, above). Didn't try them, as Pa Hoyden also has a very strong beer list, thanks to the presence in Norway of the quite excellent Nøgne craft brewery. Sorry to be too late for the OP, but if you're serious about food (and why else would you be on Chowhound?), Pa Hoyden is worth a visit. I have seen it compared to Denmark's Noma, for instance, though not having been to the latter, I can't say how accurately:

                Also, if you are a beer geek, Henrik's is an excellent bar for atmosphere, knowledgeable staff, and quality selection, including, again, a strong list of Norwegian beers. (This is the kind of place that takes its staff to California craft breweries on an "educational development" trip. You have to love social democracy.):