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Food & Drink

Chef David Zilber’s guide to Copenhagen’s foodie hot spots

Copenhagen based Canadian chef David Zilber is a food scientist and New York Times bestselling author specializing in fermentation. Here he lets us in on where to eat in Copenhagen right now.

David Zilber is perhaps most known for being the director of the world renown Fermentation Lab at Restaurant Noma from 2016-2020, and The Noma Guide to Fermentation, the bestseller book his work there turned into. Currently he works from Copenhagen as a food scientist on the frontiers of flavour and innovation, employing the help of microbes to build a more just and sustainable food system for all. We asked him about his favorite foodie places in Copenhagen at the moment. And don’t forget to follow him on Instagram: @david_zilber

Albatross og Venner. Photo: Agnese Negrini

ˮAlbatross & Venner is an amazing, newly opened bakery that stands out from the rest for their bread’s perfectly hydrated and toothsome crumb, not to mention the amazing selection of viennoiserie on offer everyday, from poppy seed and lemon curd snegel, to moist and waxy canelé. Located in hall 2 of Torvehallerne, right in the heart of Copenhagen, Albatross & Venner began as a dream between two bakers, seeing a collaboration between the German bakery Albatross and Denmark's Omegn & Venner materialize years later as a small stand with a big heart.”

Mangia. Photo: Magnus Omme

ˮMangia is another favorite. Southern Europe finds a comfortable home in Northern Europe with this one. Simple, yet deftly prepared Italian fare as good as you could find on the streets of Milan or Rome. A feat that is no doubt helped by the fact that Mangia's team is composed almost entirely of Italian transplants. They whip up some of the most satisfying fare in town. The menu is deliciously riddled with hazelnuts, sharp cheeses, and tomatoes. I highly recommend whatever version of the plin they happen to be serving on any given day.”

La Banchina. Photo: Kristian Bust

“Whenever anyone comes to Copenhagen during the summer and asks where they have to spend an afternoon, my default answer is La Banchina. The little wine bar slash cafe slash casual restaurant slash swimming hole runs precisely counter to what you'd expect of sleek, cool, Scandi culture. Carved out of few ramshackle structures on the edge of town, its charm will melt your worries away as you sip on pet nat (natural sparkling wine made with the ancestral method where it is bottled before fermentation is finished) or IPA's while the outdoor grill sees a veggie heavy menu waft delicious plumes of smoke overhead, whetting your appetite while you wet your toes in the refreshing harbour waters.”

“My go-to cafe for great coffees, people watching, friendly convos with the courteous staff, neighbourhood locals and even tourists in the know is Atelier September. Some say Scandinavians can be a bit chilly at the outset, but there's nowhere else I've had more people spark up a conversation than this cafe. Food wise, there are plenty of delicious mediterranean tinged vegetarian plates on offer, but don't let that get in the way of the famed avocado mad (just be sure to add a soft boiled egg!).”

Jatak. Photo: Per-Anders Jörgensen

“The last tip you get from me is Jatak. Fellow Canadian Danish transplant Jonathan Tam opened his heartfelt, small monograph of a restaurant last year to much anticipation and lots of fanfare. At its heart, it's a neighbourhood restaurant, serving the families just off of Norrebro's more residential Åboulevard, but (if you can) snag a counter seat before the open kitchen for the 10+ servings, prepare to be transported inside the mind of a chef; through decades of his professional history and cultural heritage. It’s the sort of place everyone wishes they had in their neighbourhood.”

Places mentioned:

Albatross & Venner 
Hal 2, Linnésgade 17 Torvehallerne
1361 Copenhagen
www.albatrossogvenner.dk

Mangia
Bagerstræde 9
1617 Copenhagen
mangia.dk

La Banchina
Refshalevej 141
1432 Copenhagen
www.labanchina.dk

Atelier September
Gothersgade 30
1123 Copenhagen
cafeatelierseptember.com

Jatak
Rantzausgade 39
2200 Copenhagen
www.jatakcph.com

 

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