Preparing the culinary itinerary for our 4 days in Copenhagen, a city that in itself became a foodie pilgrimage, was not an easy task. The hardest part of all was choosing the last restaurant. After this choice is made, no further restaurants can go on the list. Our last choice was Höst and I don’t regret it.
Höst is located close to Torvehallerne market, and was just minutes from our lovely Airbnb apartment. Lead by head chef Jonas Christensen, they serve contemporary Nordic cuisine emphasizing seasonal produce and utilizing traditional methods of cooking combined with a more contemporary approach to Nordic food.
Definitely one of the most beautiful restaurant we dined in, Höst’s design by Cofoco won three international awards, including the world’s best-designed restaurant at the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards. It includes lots of wood and brick, conveying a rustic aesthetic in the middle of a bustling city.
For dinner you can choose between a-la-carte and two different set menus: Höst Signature menu (425 kr. / $62 / 240₪) and Höst menu (325 kr. / $47.5 / 184₪). We chose one of each to experience as much as we can.
Even though on paper there are 3 dishes in each menu, dinner at Höst includes many other “surprises”, as they call it, served throughout the meal. This adds some mystery and a sense of wonder to the meal and perhaps makes it even more fun.
The service was friendly and efficient for most part. I love it that for each dish the sauce was added tableside. Towards the end of the meal the service began to falter, with nobody bothering to refill our empty water carafe and the untouched bread from the start of the meal still sitting idly on the table throughout the desserts (in case we wanted some ice cream on our bread, I guess?).
The music was also great, featuring contemporary indie artists. It felt just like what I would have picked listening to were I at home.
The dinner started with an amuse bouche plate consisting of 4 small bites: Cured beef, which looked a bit like beef jerky but was soft, Egg flans with Eel were my personal favorite, Celeriac ravioli filled with crab meat and Pancake dough filled with mashed potato and bacon which was a fun indulgent snack.
Next we received another “surprise” in the form of Bone marrow with beef tartare, tomato and garlic.
The surprises kept on coming, and the funny thing is that we kind of spoiled all the surprises for the table next to us, because they ordered the exact same thing and saw it being served to us first. The Puff cake with dried mushrooms and crème fraiche was nice but had unbalanced seasoning and too much salt.
The Sourdough bread was the most disappointing we had during our entire time in Copenhagen. It was too dense, too heavy, dry and cold. After taking a bite it felt like a stone going down my throat. It was definitely the weakest link in the meal, which was uncharacteristic given the quality of all the other dishes, and given the fact that bread in Copenhagen was generally excellent.
Then came the starters: Seared flounder with glass cabbage, parsley and oysters sauce. Such a delicate dish and the fish was amazing.
The Seared Norwegian lobster and veal terrine with cauliflower and cep mushrooms reminded Opher of dish his mom used to make. I thought the lobster and veal are not a great match since the veal really overpowered the lobster. I liked the flounder better while Opher prefered the lobster dish.
We can’t go on to the main courses without a little surprise snack in between: Cabbage noodles with squid, poached egg yolk, roasted yeast and chicken broth. Very comforting and a lovely palate cleanser.
After a relatively long pause we received our main courses – Pork Belly from Grambogård with bull’s heart tomatoes, north-sea cheese and ramson capers. Presentation-wise, it doesn’t look very appetizing. Everything accompanying the pork belly was great but the cut itself was disappointing. The meat was overcooked, too chewy and not at all tender as I’d hoped.
The Grambogård beef tenderloin with blackcurrant, beetroot and smoked marrow with tarragon was much better, with amazing sweet bold flavors of the beet and a great cut of beef.
The pre dessert and the “last surprise for the evening” was Yogurt with Danish porter beer ice cream, bread crumbs and raspberries. Certainly a unique and bizarre combination.
For dessert we had two nice items: Blueberry sorbet with brown cheese and cicely.
It was okay, but as I’m not a big fan of sorbet, I wish the bowl had more chocolate in it. But that’s true for any bowl, I guess.
Corn ice cream with caramelized popcorn, raspberries and sheep milk yogurt with chanterelles. Apparently, corn ice cream is very popular these days in Copenhagen. We had corn ice cream as a dessert in three separate restaurants. I really liked the different textures – the soft ice cream, crunchy popcorn and hard caramel candy add a much needed variety in your mouth.
This is one of the highest VFM meals we’ve had. This is also one hell of an adventurous menu for your palette, with bold, experimental flavors, some of which are quite alien to westerners. Comparing all of our meals in Copenhagen, it comes only second to Kadeau .Our dinner lasted around 2 hours, which is less than our other experiences but not necessarily a bad thing. If you feel like having a taste of the new Nordic cuisine without investing more than three hours of your time, Höst offers an amazing proposition.
Make sure to book ahead since the place gets quite busy.