Åland offered culinary delights
Like I promised, here is a separate post on all the lovely food we got to enjoy during our Åland adventure. I had booked a table for us for the first night at a tapas restaurant in Mariehamn called Boquerian. I instantly liked the vibe of the place. They had a huge inviting outdoor terrace area and a rather small indoor dining area. Our table was in a covered area of the outdoor terrace, which was perfect. We both decided to choose four tapas and share a bottle of cava. I selected papas fritas, grilled gambas, halloumi fries, and chevre crostini. Hubby’s choice was olives, grilled gambas, serrano ham, and tuna tataki. Everything we ate was delicious and paired well with the cava. I can warmly recommend this restaurant if you like tapas-style dining.
Bistro style dinner
On day two, we had lunch at Café Kalesch at the Eckerö Post & Customs House. We enjoyed a huge salami-brie sandwich each and some local soda. For dinner, we headed to Indigo Restaurang & Bar. The restaurant offered two separate menus, one for indoor dining and a bistro menu for the terrace. We opted for the terrace. In wintertime, the bistro menu is available in the upstairs gastropub. We started our meal by sharing a serving of fries. I ordered a large Toast Skagen, which is a toast topped with hand-peeled prawns mixed with mayonnaise, dill, red onions, and whitefish roe. Hubby had a large Steak tartare made with fillet of beef from Åland with caper-powder, beetroot-cream, mayonnaise with onions, mustard, and whisked egg yolk. The food was super tasty, and the portions were huge. The only thing that dampened the mood a bit was that I had a bird fly into my hair. It scared the living daylights out of me, and the fact that I’m not a fan of birds, in general, did not help.
Smakbyn by Micke Björklund
On day three, we had a bit of an issue with lunch as the place I had planned to have lunch at turned out to be closed. This resulted in an extempore lunch at Pub Stallhagen, where we shared a chicken and cheese salad and some hummus with toasted islander bread. For dinner, we had a reservation at Smakbyn’s restaurant. I enjoyed fried perch with buttered new potatoes, hubby ate a lightly smoked salmon with creamed potatoes. Both portions were lovely. As we had not opted for any starters we decided to indulge in dessert. I had a lingonberry parfait and hubby had an apple-based dessert. In my opinion, this restaurant is definitely worth a visit. The food was delicious and the atmosphere and service were nice and relaxed.
Superb halloumi burger
Lunch on day four was enjoyed at Mattas Gårdsmeijeri. There is a lovely summer café in one of the buildings that serves a few lunch options and delicious looking cakes, as well as the farm’s own ice cream. The host at Pensionat Stalldalen had raved about the halloumi burger the café served so we had to try it. It was truly amazing and served with a refreshing salad on the side. If I’m ever in the area again I will return for this burger. For dinner, we headed back to Pub Stallhagen. I chose a patty made from ground pike with crushed potatoes. Hubby enjoyed entrecote with a beer-based sauce and potato wedges. We rounded off the meal with salted caramel ice cream from Mattas Gårdsmeijeri, delicious. The food had a nice home-cooked vibe, it was tasty and super-filling. The beers Stallhagen produces are great too.
Three-course dinner with a view
On the last full day, we headed to Pub Niska for lunch. Pub Niska specializes in pizzas called plåtbröd. We shared a pizza with salami, tomatoes, red onion, and rocket. The pizza had a super thin and crispy crust. I am not surprised this is said to be the best pizza on Åland. In the afternoon, we had a coffee and local pancake at this really cute café called Bagarstugan, established in 1866. For dinner, we had a reservation at restaurant Nautical. As this was our final dinner on this trip we decided to enjoy three courses. First, we were served a small amuse-bouche in the form of mushroom soup with bacon crumble. My starter was scallops, while hubby had cured salmon. For my main I again chose fried pike and hubby ate arctic char with miso. Desserts were a Crème Brulee and a chocolate mousse with bilberry sorbet. The dinner was excellent. the restaurant had an air of days gone by, but the food had a modern twist. The views from the restaurant are also lovely, you can look at the museum ship Pommern and the sea.
I was positively surprised by how many lovely places with delicious food we were able to find on this trip. I would go as far as to dub Åland a great destination for foodies.