Written by Anete Kruusmägi
Sweden is like a fairytale country with Stockholm’s colourful old town and traditional red wooden houses scattered all over its coastal islands. Swedish life is familiar to us through Astrid Lindgren’s heartwarming children stories. Already taking a look at Ilon Wikland illustrations, we could get some hints on how people lived there and what they ate.
It’s not a secret that one of the best ways to understand culture is through its food, and luckily Sweden is home to five restaurants that have earned two or more Michelin stars. So let’s take a look at the top 10 restaurants in Sweden.
Oaxen Krog — Fine Dining in a Shed
If you care about exquisite interior design, and food that is not only delicious but also looks and smells irresistible, then you should find your way to Oaxen Krog. This two-star establishment is housed in a refurbished boatyard shed, and its interior design is inspired by marine industries. So you have a nice view of the water while you eat and if you wish, you can sleep on a boat opposite the restaurant.
On your plate, you will find Swedish cuisine like oysters with curds of soured milk, and kohlrabi in soured whey. You can pamper your tastebuds with a 6 or 10-course tasting menu.
Colourful Food in Gastrologik
Another great restaurant in Stockholm is Gastrologik. The dining room in this two-star restaurant is full of light. White curtains, furniture and tablecloths are there to bring out the colours of their meals. It truly feels like an artist has arranged the dish on your plate. Think about grass-green fresh peas or a fish sprinkled over with colourful flower petals. As a New Nordic place, Gastrologic values local, seasonal and organic produce. So expect to taste a lot of vegetables like fresh and fermented garlic, asparagus or perfectly cooked fish. When it comes to more creative dishes, you can also try a Nordic taco.
Interesting combinations in Frantzen
This three-star restaurant In Stockholm looks the complete opposite of the light and breezy interior of Gastrologik. Here the interior is dim, even dark, and the dishes are carried to you often on back plates and trays. This is not just one of the 10 best restaurants in Sweden, but in fact, holds the sixth position in World’s 50 Best Restaurants list.
Here the Nordic cuisine blends into modern cuisine. In Frantzen, You can find local international and Asian flavours. Be prepared to try surprising combinations like chawanmushi with foie gras and aged pork.
Feel like home in Aloë
Swedes know how to dine. Long gone are days when fine dining meant sitting stiffly in an overly formal setting. Coming to Aloë is like reaching home. The interior is almost homey with its big glass panels, dark walls and wooden ceilings. So, in addition to a great food experience, you’ll surely get some ideas on how to decorate your own home. And the really incredible fact is that the owners Niclas Jönsson and Daniel Höglander designed the place without any help from architects.
When it comes to flavours, you’ll probably taste some caviar, foie gras, reindeer with grilled and smoked apple, black currant and Bagnoli truffle.
Vollmers: Dishes Inspired by Childhood
Stockholm is not everything that Sweden has to offer. A coastal city in southern Sweden, Mamlö is well worth visiting for great food experiences because here is located one of the best restaurants in Sweden— Vollmers. You’ll find Vollmers in a 19th-century townhouse on a cobbled street in the old town. This two-star restaurant offers the best local food. Some of their dishes are even inspired by the owner’s own childhood memories.
Vollmers welcomes you with white tablecloths, plush carpets and comfy chairs. Yet it’s definitely not overly formal.
Food in Vollmers is a mix of French and New Nordic cuisine. For example, you can taste red beet ravioli with Danish smoked fresh cheese and prickled spruce shoots on top.
This one-star establishment is another airy and full of light dining place, perfect for people who yearn for sunlight. Their classy yet modern interior and wonderful tableware is a treat for design lovers. Food-wise it’s a place that serves modern cuisine with occasional Asian notes.
The restaurant that is located on Djurgården island in Stockholm, offers some of the best food experiences in Sweden. Try asparagus in hollandaise, for example, or wood-fired quail.
Ekstedt: Food Prepared on Fire
In this one-star restaurant in Stockholm, everything is about the fire. Expect smokey flavours and caramelisation, But why fire? The reason is simple. The owner of this trendy place, Niklas Ekstedt, grew up in a small village in Northern Sweden. He decided to bring the feeling of the great outdoors to his restaurant. So, he makes traditional Scandinavian dishes using local ingredients, but he doesn’t use any gas or electricity but cooks everything on fire. If you can, reserve a seat at the counter to experience the wood-burning oven, fire pit and chargrill. Yet Ekstedt is not making simple barbecue here. Instead, he prepares oysters, scallops and reindeer on fire.
Operakällaren for the lovers of history
This one-star restaurant in Stockholm charms you with its interior. There’s a danger that instead of looking at your plate, you’ll find yourself admiring the ceiling instead. The restaurant is located in the opera house and it certainly looks like you’re in an opera. Carved walls and ceilings, chandeliers, paintings, beautiful windows, and a huge fireplace screams for classical cuisine and is a wonderful excuse to wear your best dress.
The food here is no less wonderful. You’ll get to taste the best Sweden has to offer: venison, trout, roe, mushrooms and berries. Of course, you’ll find here staples such as caviar, lobster and foie gras. Operakällaren is the place, where Swedish and French traditions melt together in the best way.
If dining in an opera house is not your cup of tea, don’t worry, Stockholm has something to offer to you as well. One-star Agrikultur has a simple and clean interior. Seascape paintings and white tiles on the wall make you think of your grandmother’s kitchen. In this simple, yet stylish restaurant, you find all the best Swedish dishes with a contemporary twist. Flavours are intense just as in your grandmother’s place, only the contrasts are not traditional but more original. What makes Agrikultur special is that they raise their own pigs, hunt and forage many of their ingredients. What can you see on your plate in Agrikultur? Expect to taste lots of pickle and ferment dishes. Be ready to eat fish bouillon, crispy white moss with chanterelles and reindeer heart.
If you are a fan of Japanese food, you can’t walk past this one-star restaurant in Stockholm. In Sushi Sho, you’re seated on the counter in a simple room. But the meals that they are serving here are far from simple. The menu is omakase, which means the cook decides which food you’ll get. So what will you eat here? Expect to try octopus with soy-marinated egg and nigiri sushi. Depending on the season, the restaurant offers a wide array of fish like mackerel, sea bream, cod, turbot and trout served with two different types of Japanese rice. All in all, the menu consists of 15 delicious dishes.
Photo by Shvets Anna from Pexels