Nyhavns Færgekro: A taste of Danish tradition and history
Text: Signe Hansen | Photos: Nyhavns Færgekro
Food like your grandmother used to cook it (if your grandmother was Danish), history, and all the maritime charm of Copenhagen’s picturesque Nyhavn – if you are looking for a quintessentially Danish experience, Nyhavns Færgekro might just be the place for you.
Copenhagen is not short of restaurants offering sleek, modern interiors and New Nordic Cuisine; but if you are, on the other hand, looking for a taste of Denmark’s traditional kitchen, historic settings, and a quintessentially Danish charm, Nyhavns Færgekro is one of the few places to go. “As a restaurant, we take pride in the Danish kitchen, in quality, and in making our guests feel at home,” says restaurant manager Bolette Andersen. “That’s also reflected in our menu: it’s not hugely complicated, like those of many other Copenhagen restaurants, but you will get what you expect – when you order an open roast-beef sandwich, it will be good-quality, classic Danish smørrebrød.”
Set in Nyhavn, Copenhagen’s popular 17th-century canal and hospitality district, the two historic buildings that today house Nyhavns Færgekro have a long history of providing a wide range of services, some more glorious than others. An importer of exotic animals, a hairdresser for the rich and famous, and a seafarers’ tavern with upstairs hotel rooms – rented by the hour – are all among past businesses to have been housed in the buildings. Maritime memorabilia, a cosy fireplace and dark wooden beams keep the ambiance of the place’s history alive. Meanwhile, outside on the restaurant’s large terrace, which stays open all year, guests can enjoy the beautiful views and buzzing atmosphere of modern-day Nyhavn.
Tradition and history are on the menu also when it comes to the food itself. One of the most popular offerings is the restaurant’s herring lunch buffet, presenting a dozen-odd different varieties of the traditional Danish smørrebrød topping. Guests can also enjoy a long string of traditional Danish dishes, like ‘frikadeller’ (pork meat balls), ‘tarteletter’ (patty shells filled with creamy asparagus and chicken) and, of course, ‘smørrebrød’ (open sandwiches). To round it off, you can finish with an apple crumble or lemon mousse, desserts that will induce a distant nostalgic glimmer in the eyes of most Danes. “It’s the desserts our grandmothers used to make for us, and that’s how we want our guests to feel – like they’re back at their grandparents’ place,” says Andersen.
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