Most of our meals in Scandinavia were from markets or in outdoor restaurants. For example, we ate fresh shrimp, right off the boats, served with mayonnaise and washed down with very cold local beer at a picnic table on the porch of a very small local restaurant on a tiny island outside of Oslo. And in Helsinki, we ate turnovers stuffed with whitebait (very young fish, in this case herring, that are edible whole) from the covered market by the water, followed by some very serious coffee. But in Stockholm, we had one last Michelin moment.
Fleeing the tourist-ridden Old Town, we stopped at F12 for what was supposed to be quick lunch. Three hours later, we were still polishing off the last crumbs in a dining room that really makes you get Swedish design. We had a blast from start to finish, beginning with this amazing house-made local-style black bread, served with more of that unbelievable butter (I ate about fifteen slices in a row even before the first course appeared). We had smoked scallops with lime sorbet, and a pretty excellent take on a roast veal sandwich.
I usually don’t like super-sweet icewines, but our waiter handed us a couple of glasses of a local product. Apparently icewine is new to Sweden. Only a thousand bottles of the stuff are produced every year, and it's impossible to find. It was honey and black pepper in alcoholic form, a perfect way to end a perfect meal on a sunny, lazy afternoon in Stockholm.
Who knew Scandinavia could be so cool?