Saturday, March 23, 2013

Brunch Your Way around Stockholm part 2

The dessert and cheese selection at Djrugårdsbrunn, picture from their Facebook

To read the story behind and get the earlier reviews in full, please read the first post here! From now on I'll just continue uppdating this post to ensure that everything is easy to find for you.

Total: 22p 
Price: 325kr including coffee/tea.

On the metro out to Fruängen, our expectations were not very high, partly because of the location (quite far from the center) and partly because we thought that it would be hard for any place to live up to a rather steep price tag of 325kr NOT including nonalcoholic beverages like juice. We were almost proved wrong. First we were very happy to find that the service was excellent, from the beginning to the end, friendly efficient and welcoming, best service by far of all the brunches we’ve had. When it came to the cold, a good mix of traditional pickled herring with more modern touches like steamed salmon, wasabi crème with pickled ginger. Good selection, nice presentation and overall great flavors. The hot could have been great, but unfortunately nothing that stuck out, and some was a bit so and so like the over cooked pork and the very salt onion soup. Overall, average. The dessert were good, a wide selection, well presented and our favorite the crème brulee was perfect. Also a nice cheese selection with homemade apple compote and the white chocolate lime mousse was  very good. On the downside, the burnt mini croissants, why on earth were they even served? We spent a leisure 2,5 hours here and were not once asked to leave, the waitresses were very attentive, friendly and answered any questions we had. Overall, very good brunch, nice friendly atmosphere without the need to be posh, guests were anyone from a new born to the great grandmother and everyone seemed content. The only minus was the price, if you charge 325kr, we would at least expect juices to be included, I would even expect them to be freshly squeezed, now we orders a fresh apple juice each and made the tab run up another 120sek.. Well worth  visit, if you can afford it.

Total: 14p 
Price: 295kr including, coffee, tea, several juices etc

Comment: Beautiful setting, nice walk around the islands right outside and cozy sofas. The cold courses were very very good.  A few great salads, excellent marinated Parmigiano,  beautifully cured prosciutto, tasty warm freshly baked bread. After this we were extremely excited to continue our leisure brunch, but oh the disappointment! Something called mackerel lasagna was definitely the worst thing we've tasted so far, and the rest wasn't much better. Tasteless, finished before 1/2 of the guests had eaten (despite another serving at 14.00) and just bad all together. They ran out of coffee, they ran out of the otherwise extremely likable fresh oranges that you could squeeze yourself and did nothing about it? Left with 4 empty plates at our table (same goes for the rest of the restaurant) since no one had bothered to pick them up, we advanced to deserts that were uneven to say the least. 4,5 points for the crème brulee, 1 or 2 for the rest of them. When we left the only way to pay by card was to pay in the overcrowded reception, standing in a big line, mixed with other brunch guests and hotel guests checking out. Sad to see the deterioration after such a great start but big plus for freshly squeezed orange juice, and that coffee, tea juice, smoothies etc were included!

Price: 210Sek not including coffee/ juice

Comment: This is one of those places you should go to during the winter. Decorated like an old library, nice comfortable sofas and armchairs. The food is comforting but quite average, nothing is out of the ordinary apart from the cured salmon that was great, the best one out of all the brunches we have had. Big plus for the miniburgers but other than that it was just plain. 

Price: 225Sek

Comment: The setting, wow! Well let’s just say it's worth the train and bus ride. We were here on a beautiful ice cold winter day, and it was like a fairy tale. Sitting inside, in front of a crackling fire while looking out over a white landscape was great, unfortunately the food wasn't. On the plus side, drinks (coffee, juice) was included in the price, the cheese selection was good and there was a great homemade apple marmalade to accompany it that we loved. On the down side, the warm food was well bland to say the least. We were not impressed at all. Amongst the cold we found what could have been a good mango salsa that unfortunately contained frozen (!) mango dices, almost no meat and the bread was dry. Overall, go here, but maybe just for a coffee and a traditional kanelbulle? 

Villa Godthem
Total 21p
Price: 299kr, ex coffe/juice

A sunny winter day, with glistering snow is a great day to take a walk along Strandvägen out to the peculiar villa on Djurgården, mainly famous for their traditional “Plankstek”. The restaurant gives a great first impression; the service is friendly and has a quite personal touch. The cold range from traditionally light smoked hams, homemade bread, marinated salmon and several Swedish pickled herrings, all beautifully presented and refilled constantly, no risk of running out here! As always, we would have loved some signed to go with the different plates to explain the details, but we try away and are greatly rewarded. The Hot selection is the best part, we skip the egg and bacon, savor the home made miniburgers, the hoisin pork with a beautifully executed root fruit tartlet, the perfect smoked salmon omelet and we are more than pleased. Our coffee is continuously refilled without asking and when we realize we are running out of time, the waitress goes to check with the maître d, and let us keep our table for an extra hour. We love her and give her the biggest tip so far.. The desserts look amazing, however the flavors just aren’t there, and when they are, they are not pleasant. This is something they need to deal with unfortunately. All in all we really do recommend this brunch, we’ll be back!

Hotell Rival
Price: 265kr ex juice, inc coffee/tea

Rival has managed to keep its old charm but yet survive some more modern adjustments to suit the new Södermalm clientele and they have done it well. We are served by a nice waitress that continue to give great service throughout the brunch despite a large working station, that helps when the food isn’t amazing although descent all the way. The cold holds an ok standard and the serve steak tartar that makes the points go up immediately! The hot is ordinary, nothing special and quite bland to be honest. The desserts are better than the hot selection, a rather wide variety to choose from and well executed, the carrot cake is one of the better ones we’ve had. Sad that drinks/coffee/tea is excluded, it’s not really great value without it.

Cold -3
Price: 285Sek ex juice, ink kaffe

We thought that we had seen it all when we visited Elverket, but no, there are even worse places. At a restaurant with the best possible view in Stockholm one would think that at least the atmosphere points would be high, but no. Sure, it’s a beautiful walk up towards the top, a picture perfect view of the water towards Stockholm to one side, to the other, a great city view over the older parts of Södermalm but unfortunately that is where the good things end. During brunch we cannot enjoy the view as we are seated inside a white plastic tent with no see through parts. We get to place our jackets on the floor and sit on crappy old wooden benches clearly not made to hold the number of people that are now trying out the balance act. The food was just overall bad. Everything was handed out to the buffet at the beginning of the seating time, nothing was ever refilled and several heater weren’t working making 50% cold and the rest was either bland or just over all unidentifiable. The only good thing we found were the directly prepared shrimp crêpes. Sure, we could eat it, it’s not that but if we pay 285sek we expect a bit more then store bought roast beef and potato salad. Desserts consisted of minipancaces that you prepare yourself, great idea but the irons never got remotely warm, making it take forever to finish one. The chocolate cake was dry and bland. Regarding the service staff, they answered in a friendly manner and where polite when we could find them, but we cleared our own table and sorted our own drink rendering them no tip at all.
All in all, take a walk here, bring a sandwich and enjoy the view rather than paying for brunch.

Elverket 9p
Fåfängan 8p