Saturday, March 08, 2008

Treasures of Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek
















I always return to Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek when I visit Copenhagen. This was one of the sights on schedule as Ketil and I visited the Danish capital. We wanted to pay homage to Sekhmet, the Lion Goddess, and standing in front of her was a powerful experience.



The Egyptian collection offers some real treasures. Dating back thousands of years. Entering the rooms you are faced with pharaohs, sphinxes and other mythical creatures whose meaning has been lost in time.

I have always been intrigued by Egypt, from the first time time I heard about Tutankhamun's treasure and the other hidden graves in the Valley of Kings. That was one of the reasons why I decided to study archeology.

The Egyptians adorned their statues and buildings with their hieroglyphs, and since Champollion read this early writing for the first time in 1822 we actually know a lot about the world in which the Egyptians lived. This is a close up of a hieroglyphs found on a large stone portal framing one of the doors at Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek. I wonder what it means?

Sekhmet - the Lion Goddess

Meet Sekhmet - the Lion Goddess. She used to be the Warrior Goddess of Upper Egypt, and the protector of the Egyptian Pharaohs.

She is made in diorite, an extremely hard rock, very difficult to work with. In fact diorite tools were in ancient Egypt used to cut granite.

It dates back to the reign of Amenhotep III (1391-1353 BC).

There are no records on where the statue was found or originates from.

Anubis - the guide to the afterlife

This magnificent statue is much younger than Sekhmet. It depicts Anubis, or Inpu, Anupu, Wip, or Ienpw.

This God with a Jackal head was supposed to lead you to the afterlife. He was God of embalming, the old practice the Egyptians used to mummify their dead and prepare them for the afterlife. He was in the oldest Egyptian texts associated with the burial of the king.

It is made from bronze and dates probably to the 26th dynasty (664-525 BC). In this period Egypt was ruled by client Kings installed by the powerful Assyrians.

There are no records on where the statue was found or originates from.

See more Egyptian treasures at Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek here

Taittinger Treats



















Opening up a bottle of Taittinger champagne is an event that deserves the right nibble. The combination blinis topped with raw onions, sour cream and beluga caviar was out of the question that particular night, but why not play with the theme.

Buy ready made mini vol-au-vents, heat them up in the oven until crisp. Cut 1/4 of a red onion and mix with sour cream. Just before your guests come, fill the crisp vol-au-vents with the onion and sour cream mix, and top with you favourite caviar. I used caviar made from trout eggs, large, red and shining like rubys.

And Taittinger!!

The Champagne House Taittinger was founded in 1734 and is today one of the few privately owned houses left. 75000 people visit Champagne Taittinger each year to admire their 17 million bottles stored at the property. The Taittinger Brut Réserve is made from 42 % pinot noir, 38% chardonnay, and 20% pinot meunier.

Those of you that drinking champagne is money wasted should enjoy a sip of Taittinger. It has the most refreshing apple and citrus flavour and a hint of minerals. And it makes you buzz. RRRRRRR!!!

Is that you?


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As the number of visitors at Enjoy Food & Travel passed 2000 in February, I wanted to find out who you are, those of you that visit my website. As I started to go through my visitors at Feedburner it dawned on me that Enjoy Food & Travel is going global. I am baffled by the fact that my site is read on all continents. In Las Cruses NM, Belgrade in Serbia, Tehran in Iran, Balozi in the Democratic Republic of Kongo, Belo Horizonte in Brazil, and in North Turramurra in New South Wales people are reading my stuff. I am honoured.

Who are you?

If you go through my map there are certain areas that have more visitors than others. There are relatively few visitors in Asia, South America, and Africa. Most of you are in the US, where I have had visitors from all states except New Hampshire, Maine and Wyoming. In the US most of visitors come from the Boston, New York area, and California.

In Europe I have visitors from countries as Moldova, Russia, and Serbia, but most of you are in the UK, Netherlands, Denmark, and Norway. If you would like to see if you are on the map, browse through, and remember it has 4 pages and you may be on page three.

But remember that there may be many places with the same name, and that I may have placed the pin on the wrong place. If so - let me know!

Share a sight, a restaurant, or your favourite recipe on Enjoy Food & Travel!

Send an email to johnsen.tor@gmail.com, attach a picture and get your story on Enjoy Food & Travel. Then the other visitors may get to know you! Then we could experience what a true global community may be.

And again, thank you for visiting Enjoy Food & Travel!!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

An urban weekends dining




















Living in a big city has many advantages. Dining the world is one of them, tasting American, Asian, Italian and Continental dining after your own choice. This weekend (including yesterday) was a typical example of Urban dining, and all restaurants served great food. Would I return to any of them? Yes indeed. I have visited all of them before.

Fried fat finger food at TGI Fridays

I had known the TGI Fridays brand from the US long before it conquered Oslo. If I want seriously trashy food, I choose to go to one of its three restaurants in the Norwegian capital.

I took my nephew Knut to lunch Saturday in pure gluttony, just to eat fried fat finger food. I wanted to eat two or more of these highly unhealthy treats, and Knut agreed.

Three servings, one Jack Daniels marinated chicken strips with sesame served with Jack Daniels sauce, one jalapeño poppers with sour cream and fried mozzarella sticks with marinara sauce. Yum, yum!

I closed my eyes and found myself in the TGI restaurant in Back Bay in Boston. Seriously unhealthy and absolutely fab!

Status: Have been there before, and will return again. Recommended for these treats, but you are easily bored if you eat too much of the other food.

Follow up on Enjoy Food & Travel: Will eat their junk food again. Not a recommended choice for tourists - find other and more interesting restaurants in the Norwegian capital. There will no review of TGI Fridays here on Enjoy Food & Travel.

Fridays in Oslo:

Karl Johans gate 35, Oslo
Phone +47 22 33 32 00
Official website

Stranden 39, Oslo
Phone +47 24 13 31 00

Klingenberggata 5, Oslo
+47 22 83 20 82


Read more on the Jack Daniels brand and how to use Tennessee whiskey in food

Delicious on Bangkok Thai
It is a very long time since I had been dining on Bangkok Thai. Suggestion from my pal Ketil to choose Thai food for Sunday dinner meant revisiting Bangkok Thai.

That was an extremely good idea. As I was supposed to enjoy another meal later, I chose the most delicious chicken soup with coconut milk, lemongrass, and ginger. The taste was out of this world, but as I tried to eat some of the bits and pieces, I found that they were inedible. With that taste, however, it was irrelevant.

Then I picked another entree, deep fried tiger prawns. I said tiger prawns, and not deep fried broccoli, but in fact I got two large bites of the green stiff, and three prawns with a delicious sweet dipping sauce.

The prawns were extremely edible nibbles, the broccoli had too much batter making them a little soggy and very rich. All in all, very satisfying food.

Status: Have been there before, and will return. Highly recommended, low prices, excellent service and good food.

Follow up on Enjoy Food & Travel: Enjoy Food & Travel will return to give an official review on Bangkok Thai.

Address:
Bangkok Thai
Grønlandsleiret 27, 0190 Oslo
Phone +47 22 17 70 03

More on Thai cuisine?

Read Susanne Kochs experience on The Samui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts

Italian Antipasti at Kampen bistro

As my sister arrived we decided to eat at Kampen bistro, just around the corner. I have dined there several times, and it has always been a great experience.

We decided to share Antipasti price NOK 120 (€15), and a cheese platter priced at NOK 150 (€19).

The antipasti was Italian sausage, prosciutto, salad, vegetables, olives, aïoli, and other ingredients available that day. That evening fresh prawns were added to the antipasti.

The antipasti was excellent for the two of us, eager to eat to have have a good time.

As the cheese was served, I was a little disappointed to be honest.

Described as "matured cheese from Italy, France, and Norway" I had had not expected the pieces to be so small. This is definitely a treat for one, whereas the antipasti had enough food to keep you happy.

Status: Have been there before, and will return. Highly recommended, average prices, good service and excellent food.

Follow up on Enjoy Food & Travel: Enjoy Food & Travel will return to give an official review on Kampen bistro.

Address:
Kampen Bistro
Bøgata 21, 0655 Oslo
Phone: +47 22 19 77 08
Official website

Sicilian Pizza at San Lorenzo

I was treated to a meal at San Lorenzo Tuesday. This is also a restaurant I have eaten before. The menu is restricted to antipasti, pizzas, pasta and dolce. Reasonable prices, and they serve excellent brick oven pizzas. The menu is small, without any meat or fish under offer

I enjoyed a Pizza Etna, named after the famous Sicilian volcano topped with tomato sauce, mozzarella, salsiccia, eggplant, sliced Parmesan and chili. Thin and crispy, delicious salsiccia with MUCH garlic, thin slices of aubergine and fiery chili explaining the reference to Etna.

Great stuff at a nice price of NOK 135 (€18)

Status: Have been there before, and will return again. Recommended, especially for lunch.

Follow up on Enjoy Food & Travel: Will eat there again. The restricted menu means, however, that San Lorenzo will not be given a full review on Enjoy Food & Travel.

Address:
San Lorenzo
Haakon VII gate 10, 0161 Oslo
Phone: +47 22 83 66 00
Official website
info@sanlorenzo.no

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

A Cup of Bacon?




















Remember the small serving cups made from tortillas? I thought I was clever, but my nephew Hans Ørnes had found another serving cup fanatic. Megan, the owner of the blog
not martha has taken this art even further - introducing the Bacon Cup. Megan's idea was similar to that of Michael Smith, but the result was much cleverer and more difficult to make. So if you really would like to take part in a true culinary innovation - listen to Megan.

I will, when I have enough time.

Heritage Tourism on Susi's Blog




















Enjoy Food & Travel co-writer Susanne Koch is the born traveler. She and her husband are real world globetrotters, interesting people to know. She invited me for dinner today, and told me that she are currently working on stories on UNESCO Heritage sites. She told me that she has visited quite a few, and when she started to list them, I found that I had seen a few as well.


The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO):

"seeks to encourage the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity. This is embodied in an international treaty called the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage adopted by UNESCO in 1972."

Here are a few UNESCO Heritage sites I have visited

Grand Place - Brussels

My sister called Grand Place once an outdoor banquet hall. Through the last 15 years, I have enjoyed this beautiful baroque square with its rich architectural details.

Most of the buildings on Grand Place were built the last decades of the 17th century. UNESCO has awarded it its Heritage status as it is:

"an outstanding example of the eclectic and highly successful blending of architectural and artistic styles that characterizes the culture and society of this region."

Read more on Grand Place on Enjoy Food & Travel

Bryggen in Bergen

Bryggen is selected as UNESCO Heritage site through criterion iii. That describes a site should:

"bear a unique or at least exceptional testimony to a cultural tradition or to a civilization which is living or which has disappeared;"

Bryggen bears a testimony to the old Hanseatic League, the commercial union with roots to the old cities by the German North Sea, and Baltic Sea coasts. The houses standing today are around 300 years old, but the way they are built are much older, going back to Medieval times.

Read more on Bryggen on Enjoy Food & Travel

uKhalamba - Barrier of Lances

Another sight is the mighty Drakensberg Mountains in the heart of the KwaZulu Natal province, bordering the mountain country of Lesotho.

Here you find a breathtaking view of tall mountains, rich flora and fauna and cave paintings going back thousands of years.

Read more on the Drakensberg Mountains on Enjoy Food & Travel

The World of Gaudí

For those of us that are in love with Barcelona, it is great that the architect Gaudis work are classified as UNESCO Heritage sites.

From the marvels of Sagrada Familia, Park Guëll, Casa Milà and Casa Battlo. Design wonders from a genius.

More on UNESCO Heritage Sites

Read more on UNESCO heritage sites at Enjoy Food & Travel

Read more on UNESCO heritage sites on Susi's Souvenirs


See other sights reviewed here on Enjoy Food & Travel

See other sights in Oslo here on Enjoy Food & Travel

Monday, March 03, 2008

Shebeen - Fire Brødre reincarnated

As our favourite tavern Fire brødre closed October 2007, it left me and my drinking buddy Ketil homeless. In my article October 21st we asked for your help. To find another place to enjoy our Sunday pints. We have, since then, roamed the city restlessly to find a new regular pub. We have had a few pints at Welhavens Café, not far from The Royal Palace, but we have not found the perfect place to call our own. Then we found Shebeen, and a story with a twist.

I have always wished to have a genuine Irish pub close to where I live. Ketil and I decided, after a Thai meal to check out a new Irish pub in Gamlebyen.

There had been an Irish tavern called Slainté, there before, but Shebeen had opened just two weeks ago. It was 4.30 PM, and we were the only one there.

We ordered two pints of Kilkenny and sat down. We felt immediately at ease, and as I watched the tables and chairs - it suddenly dawned on me. It just had to be the furniture from our old tavern, the dark patinated tables and Windsor chairs, the red leather sofas.

I went to the counter and asked where the tables and chairs came from and the landlord confirmed indeed that they were our chairs and tables fro, Fire Brødre. The landlord told me that even our good friend Fred, from Fire Brødre, worked here during Friday and Saturday night.

Ketil and I decided that this was definitely a sign. We could seek refuge by our old tables, resting on the sofas we have been sitting on for the last 15 years. Shebeen is Fire Brødre reincarnated!!

A new home, at last!!!

Address:
Shebeen
Schweigaards Gate 53, 0191 Oslo

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Old and new taverns of Oslo





















Oslo is an old city. For 1000 years people has lived in the Norwegian capital. Still there are only a few taverns of some age in Oslo. The oldest,
Café Engebret, was founded by Engebret Christoffersen in 1857 in an old 18th century building in Kvadraturen, the city's oldest area. This is a place for those of you with a good budget, but there are a few places where you can eat and drink much cheaper, and some of them has a great atmosphere.

Fru Burums

This is a great place to take a pint, as Fru Burums has no kitchen. This is, however, no problem. As Fru Burums is located in the wealthy Frogner area of the Norwegian capital, you will find many high quality restaurants nearby.

Fru Burums is a remarkable tavern, as here you are seated in the Middle Ages. This as the owner has bought the interior or interiors from old English buildings, as this pulpit from a church dating back to the Middle Ages, now built into the bar counter.

Address:

Fru Burums
Skovveien 3, Oslo
Phone: +47 22 24 80 70

A nice place to eat nearby? Try Martha Mettlig, a great French / modern European restaurant five minutes away.

Asylet

Asylet is located in an early 19th century building at Grønland, on the East End of Oslo. This area used to be a predominantly working class area.

You visit Asylet to drink. The menu at Asylet, does not offer good value for money. I regard the quality of the kitchen as one of its largest drawbacks, as Asylet has tons of atmosphere.

The old building and its yard (see top) is a pearl. During winter you can get a table in front of this old fireplace, and the rooms you sit in are ancient. So, if Asylet focused on the quality of their food, it would be one of the most attractive places to eat and drink in the Norwegian capital.

Address:
Asylet
Grønland 28, 0188 Oslo
Phone +47 22 17 09 39

A nice place to eat nearby? Try Olympen five minutes away.

From Newcaste upon Tyne to Oslo - Two Dogs

Somebody told me that the interior of The Public House Two dogs used to belong to a pub in Newcastle upon Tyne. Whether true or not, it is one of the most genuine British pubs to be found in Oslo.

Located in Brugata, in the very heart of Oslo, five minutes away from Oslo City and the Central Station, it is perfect for a break during your shopping. Do not expect to get Fish'n Chips or Steak & Kidney pie, though. Only liquid lunch served here.

Address:
Two Dogs Public House
Brugata 5
0134 Oslo
Phone: +47 22 17 12 15

A nice place to eat nearby? Try Rice Bowl, a great Thai restaurant, only minutes away.

Stortorvet Gjestgiveri

Stortorvet Gjestgiveri is located in a house where there has been some kind of restaurant for 300 years. Stortorvets Gjestgiveri is probably one of the most charming places to enjoy a good beer.

I have tried their food, and I am sorry to say that it is rather mediochre. Once again it is sad to say that atmosphere you find in this beautiful old house is not strengthened by its kitchen. So, once again, enjoy a beer or wine in the old interior or the beautiful courtyard, and eat somewhere else.

Address:
Stortorvets Gjestgiveri

Grensen 1, 0159 Oslo
Phone: + 47 23 35 63 60
Telefax: + 47 23 35 63 63
See the official website here
E post: bestilling@storgjest.no

A nice place to eat nearby? Try tapas at Café Tenerife at Youngstorget.

Enjoy Food & Travel in Africa 2007


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Enjoy Food & Travel visited South Africa from September 29th to October 11th 2007. In this period we visited Johannesburg, Drakensberg Mountains, Pietermaritzburg, Durban, and Pilanesberg National Park. On this map you can see the places we visited, sights, restaurants, and hotels. Be aware that Google maps does not cover South Africa very well, and many of the markers shows approximate location. Do therefore consult your map if you will visit any places described here on Enjoy Food & Travel.

See my website South Africa from A-Z here