On our last night in Copenhagen we had reserved a table at a one Michelin star restaurant called Kokkeriet. Kokkeriet describes itself as modern and old-fashioned, innovative and traditional, decadent and minimalist, formal as well as down to earth. The restaurant puts out dishes that lean on Danish tradition and grandma’s recipes but does so with a twist and a modern approach. The head chef Morten Krogholm describes his inspiration and philosophy: “For me, food is one of the most beautiful things in the world — it speaks for itself entirely. My style is based on four elements: nature – simplicity – flavor – Danish. In my gastronomic interpretation, Danish is when I’m able to create something that my guests do not immediately recognize, but which can suddenly take them back to childhood memories and experiences with a single special or recognizable scent or dish – although fragmented and assembled anew”.
Kokkeriet is a relatively small restaurant locate in Nyboder’s charming neighborhood in one of Copenhagen’s beautiful, old buildings. The restaurant received a Michelin star in 2006 but lost it in 2007 and managed to regain it in 2009. The Michelin inspectors’ comments on Kokkeriet in the 2019 Michelin guide: “The kitchen takes Danish classics and adds its own modern interpretation; dishes are fresh and colourful and all have their own story. The focus is on the tasting menu; veggies and vegans are well looked after. This very welcoming restaurant, once a corner shop, is intimate and contemporary.”
Visiting a Michelin starred restaurants has been a dream of mine for years and now it was finally time to realize that dream. Kokkeriet that offers separate tasting menus for carnivores, pescetarians, vegetarians and vegans seemed like the perfect option. You can choose a shorter (8 course) or longer (12 course) menu which both begin with an amuse bouche. There is an option of a wine or juice pairing with the menus. We decided to try the 8 course pescatarian menu with the wine pairing. But before you even get to see the menu and order you are served 5 snacks to give you an idea of the food the restaurant serves. After the snacks you are presented with the menu from which you can chose either individual dishes or one of the tasting menus.
The whole dining experience was excellent: the food, the ambiance, the wine pairings, the service… I could not fault anything. It was also a joy to watch the restaurant staff do their job, everything worked like a well-oiled machine. The only time we had to ask for something (more water when we had basically finished eating) the waiter seemed mortified that we had to ask. There were several small touches that I am sure have contributed to getting a star. When you asked for the restrooms you were taken there not just told where they were. One time I went to the restroom and left my napkin on the table it was changed as it had gotten slightly dirty when using it. The check was hand written and with it you got small individually packed handmade confections and a copy of the menu including the wines. As you were ready to leave, the entire staff that had served you came to bid you farewell. Naturally this was not the cheapest dining experience but well worth the money. Now I cannot wait to test out some other Michelin restaurants.