Travel Guide: Copenhagen I

Having just returned from a few days in Copenhagen in September, I can say with utter certainty that this is one of the best places that I have ever spent my time. There is this incredibly tangible fusion of old world and stark modernity that I found to be captivating, as well as one of the most responsibly sourced, local, organic, and seasonal food and wine offerings that I have ever encountered. Needless to say, my list of places that I adored in Copenhagen is a long one, and the vast majority of them are included below. From the world-renowned sourdough to the natural wine to the locavore “forager” cuisine (not to mention the best pizza I’ve ever eaten, and some of the best coffee too), Copenhagen was an absolute feast for the palate and senses, and a city that I intentionally left a piece of my heart in so that I might someday get to go back to retrieve it. Read on for part one of my Copenhagen travel guide, which focuses on what to eat and drink in this special city.

Don’t forget to check out #caro_in_copenhagen for my photo diary of the trip!

Breakfast & Treats

  • Lille Bakery – This little bakery in Refshaloen has extensive outdoor lawn seating and is perfect for posting up in the sunshine. Grab a Berliner (filled to order with local berry jam), a cup of coffee (they don’t serve espresso drinks), and relax.
  • Lagkagehuset – Go here for one thing: the rye chocolate cookie. One of the best cookie I’ve ever eaten (you’ll want a minimum of three).
  • Karamelleriat – This beautiful artisanal chocolate shop on Jaegersborggade in Norrebro handmakes their licorice chocolates daily (and will often give you a taste of a warm one in progress).
  • Mirabelle – One of my favorite places in Copenhagen, Mirabelle is an all-day bakery with some of the best sourdough in town. Go for the Danish breakfast, and don’t forget to grab their version of a mandel croissant from the pastry window on the way out.
  • Grod – The Danish word for porridge, Grod serves both savory and sweet varieties of this stick-to-your-ribs breakfast. I could barely eat half of the smallest size, so note that when ordering.
  • Andersen & Maillard – I adored the inventive pastries at A&M, such as their deconstructed pain au chocolat and koug aman.
  • Brod – This tiny bakery in Vesterbro is the neighborhood spot, and also happens to be open on Sundays when many other bakeries are closed. Their bread is incredible, but they also have do seasonal fruit-loaded croissants – raspberry pistachio was the flavor of the moment when I visited, and it was delightful.
  • Apollo Bar – The only place even remotely worth going to near the center of town. This little museum cafe is tucked away behind an arcade, and has beautiful decor, outdoor seating, and a killer blueberry, fig, and ricotta toast.

 

Lunch & Dinner

  • Fleisch – Butcher shop by day, restaurant by night. Meat is the name of the game here, and everything is organic and responsibly raised. Don’t miss the pickled peaches from the bar snack menu, and their beef tartare is out of this world. Plus, the decor is true hygge.
  • Baest – The best pizza I’ve ever had is from Baest in Copenhagen. The icing on the cake? Their farm outside of the city is where they grow all of the produce and animals you see on the menu, and they make the cheese and charcuterie in-house above the restaurant. Also, their organic apple and rondo spritz is the best spritz I’ve ever had. Get the selection of cheese and charcuterie, and pizza #1 from the menu (MUST add stracciatella).
  • Manfreds & Vin – This eco-bistro bills itself as veggie-heavy, which is exactly what I needed after a meat and bread-laden few days in CPH. I recommend going for lunch, where you can sit at the bar and select a combo of your favorite seasonal veggies, plus their beef tartare, which is some of the best in the city. The wine list is excellent too.
  • Restaurant Radio – Brought to you by the Noma co-founder, this minimalist tasting menu-only restaurant may have been my best meal in the city. The tasting menu at lunch is an absolute steal, and their wine selection is out of this world. Also, I almost asked for a second serving of their warm sourdough with caramelized onion butter,
  • Hija de Sanchez – The fast casual taco concept from Rosario Sanchez, I much preferred this spot to the dinner I had at Sanchez. The fish tacos are fantastic, there is a yellow hot sauce that is one of the best I’ve ever had, and they make a mean michelada too.

 

Coffee

  • Ipsen & Co – In the heart of Frederiksberg, this small local coffee shop is perfect for grabbing a latte before strolling up to Norrebro. They have shady outdoor seating too.
  • The Coffee Collective – Although there are multiple locations of this hygge cafe throughout the city, my favorite is at the top of Jaegersborggade in Norrebro. It is spacious, beautifully decorated, and you can’t beat their espresso.
  • Democratic Coffee Bar – Famous for the almond (“mandel) croissants baked twice daily, this coffee shop is located in the Danish public library in Krystalgade in the inner city. Hence, I love it.
  • Sonny – This may be tied for top three coffee shops in Copenhagen, and may have been a contender for the top spot had it not been so busy when I was there. Still, even if you can’t get a seat, swing by for a coffee. It’s a beautiful space too.
  • Cafe Atelier September – If you need to grab a coffee in the main city area, this is your jam. Once again, the gorgeous decor gets top points, but the coffee is quality and they have a full menu here as well.
  • CUB Coffee Bar – The official winner of my top Copenhagen coffee shop award. Quiet, peaceful, amazing coffee, and multiple rooms decorated so sparsely yet perfectly that you want to move in.
  • Rist – This hole in the wall spot in Vesterbro became my morning go-to when leaving my AirBnB in the a.m. While I would not say to go out of your way to come here, if you’re staying in Vesterbro, you’ll want to know about this spot.

 

Cocktails & Wine

  • La Banchina – My favorite bar in Copenhagen, hands down. This waterside cafe is the place to sit outside on the water and have a drink and watch the sunset. It is a bit of hike up in Refshaloen, but so worth. They also have docks for swimming and a seasonal sauna as well.
  • The Corner – The wine bar associated with the famed 108 restaurant, this little corner just over the bridge is the perfect place to post up for a happy hour glass of wine and snack before dinner. They do a daily happy hour special on wine, and don’t miss their sourdough with butter and pickled mushrooms.
  • Gaarden & Gaden – This Norrebro wine bar is the place to go in this neighborhood for natural wines (by the glass or the bottle). The bartender could not have been more knowledgable or friendly, and is very amenable to letting you taste what’s open.
  • Brus – In an old iron factory in Norrebro, this brewery is the perfect place to chill while you wait for your table across the street at Baest. It is quite spacious, and their bar is perfect for posting up.
  • Rosforth & Rosforth – This natural wine importer does a weekly tasting on Saturdays from 12-5pm that you simply cannot miss. There is nothing fancy or organized about it – their space is under a bridge, and you walk in and get to taste whatever they happen to be trying at the moment. But the selection is phenomenal, and I ended up staying and shooting the breeze with them for hours.
  • Den Vandrette – Owned by the guys from Rosforth, this amazing harborside wine bar was one of my favorite places in Copenhagen. It feels like a cozy cellar, and their selection of natural wines is unparalleled. They offer a full dining menu as well.  
  • Mother – Right next to Fleisch, this Italian spot is the perfect place to grab an Aperol spritz and sit outside on a bench in the sunshine. Note that they also have a brunch buffer on Sundays that is pretty epic.
  • Ved Stranden 10 – Another of my absolute favorite wine bars in Copenhagen. By now, you must realize that natural wine is the thing here, and this is another place that specializes in it. There are multiple rooms here, and also outdoor curbside tables, plus beautiful decor and a great small plates selection too.

 

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