Saturday, September 06, 2008

Images from an exhibition
























I travelled to Schwerin for the sake of the artist that made this portrait of me. Malin Kjelsrud is an extremely gifted artist that managed to capture my eyes in this magic way. I was there to see this painting and the others displayed at the exbibition.


The first round of the exhibition "Urban Portraits" was opened at Jagdschloss Gelbensande April 14th, partly sponsored by the Norwegian Embassy in Berlin.

The exhibition was relaunched at Schwerin Public Library August 21st. 40-50 people was present when the exhibition was formally opened.

Malin Kjelsrud has created contemporary art with an original twist. She creates portraits in strong colours, from photo shots.

She shows a remarkable variation in styles, from the traditional portrait to an emotional variation over Munchs scream a la Kjelsrud.

Images from an exhibition

Here are some of the images displayed at Schwerin Public Library.




















Friday, September 05, 2008

Meals on your way




















I have had no memorable meals while traveling, neither on trains, planes or airports. Still, when on your way, you often chose to kill some time and have a meal. I have been busy traveling lately, and have had a bite on my way. Here are a few meals I had on my way.


Frankfurt International Airport, July 4th 2008

July 4th 2008 I arrived at Frankfurt International Airport on my way to Strasbourg. As I had to wait for nearly three hours for my airport express bus from the airport to Alsace, there was enough time to have a light meal. I sat down in a small bar in the departure area and had a look through the menu.

What better to choose - than a soup.

A potato and carrot soup with "speck, i.e. bacon tempted, and as I ordered a glass of red wine made from Merlot, my favorite I dived into my my crime novel "Red wine goes with murder"

A cup of soup with two slices of dark bread with it, just enough to ease the worst appetite, still having had the feeling of a proper meal.

This was a pretty decent soup, good taste of potatoes and carrots with cream added and with diced bacon. Delicious - as home made. Perfect before a two hour bus ride and the wine glass (or rather two or three......) lifted my moods before the bus ride ahead.

Seafood Bar, Oslo International Airport August 20th 2008

One of the best places to eat, while waiting for take-off is found at Oslo International Airport. Seafood Bar is located in International departures. Here you may indulge in delicacies from the ocean.

This time I chose a slice of "Smörgåstårta", a Swedish specialty. This is the savoury counterpart of the cream cake. Layers of salmon, shrimps, black roe, salad and mayonnaise.

Seafood Bar is not the cheapest place to eat. NOK 120 (€ 15) is very expensive, considering the price of the ingredients. Funny enough, I do not react to the price, as the ingredients are wonderfully fresh and well prepared.

And what to drink? Champagne!!

What is it with champagne. A baby bottle of Piper-Heidsieck giving me two glasses of delicious sparkling nectar, make me feel like a million dollars!!!



Train from Hamburg to Schwerin, August 20th 2008

Meals on trains are hardly anything to write on. I have had bad experiences in Norway. Mediocre food at wicked price is the rule, rather than the exception.

Ketil had described the restaurant on board the German trains in a very favourable way. I had some expectations. As we were on board for less than an hour we had to ask for the meals that did not require too much preparation.

Goulash soup and cold sausage salad arrived at our table. The soup was not too impressive. My fellow traveller Malin Kjelsrud ordered the same as I, and claimed it tasted as something out of a tin. I am tempted to agree with her.

The cold sausage salad was a brilliant idea. Cold sausages, raw onions in a vinaigrette. Very smart and new way to prepare sausages.

But did the restaurant meet my expectations? No! But the beer was inexpensive.......

More stories on food on your way on Enjoy Food & Travel

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Schwerin - an old city




















Schwerin
escaped the bombing raids of World World II. This means that the city you see today has grown slowly and has buildings from many centuries. They are built along the streets of the old city centre that grew up from the 12th century around the large Gothic church. I took a stroll through the old streets, and I saw buildings from different ages. Here are a few.

Historic buildings of Schlachtermarkt

As you enter the Main market square you can walk through a dark passage way and enter the Sclachtermarkt or the Butcher's Market. This mysterious passage has ancient Gothic vaults.

The Schlachtermarkt is a wonderful square with small restaurants and shops. Here I found these two buildings, and I suspect that they are among of the oldest in the city possibly 400-500 years old.





Anno Domini 1574

The oldest dated building is located close to the Schlachtermarkt. This beautiful half-timbered building bears the following inscription on one of its beams:

OHERR ERBARM DI VNSER VNDE WES VNS GNEDICH ANNO 1574

A prayer for mercy of God for the house and its owners written on the solid wooden beam over 530 years ago. It has certainly worked, as it is still standing.

Kunstdrechslerei Zettler Anno 1698

This small house in Schusterstrasse was built the last years of the 17th century. Here you have some very interesting architectural details. On the gable you have an interesting little wooden portrait over an old led glass window.









Schlosstrasse 10 (1765)

The house in Schloss strasse 10 is one of its kind in Schwerin. Original facade with scrolled gable and rococco gables.

It was built around 1765 from a design by Johann Joachim Busch that designed Schloss Ludwigslust close to Schwerin. It is the only example of this architecture in Schwerin







Schwerin Masonic Building (1846)


The Masonic building in Schwerin is located close to Sclachtermarkt. It was a gift from Hofbaumeiser Georg Adolph Demmler in 1846.

The Lodge of Harpokratus zur Morgenröthe was founded as far back as 1809. The most famous monument of Hofbaumeiser Georg Adolph Demmler is the Palace in Schwerin, the home of the Dukes of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Church of Saint Thomas - Strasbourg

On the island that form the main centre of Strasbourg you find another large church. The Church of Saint Thomas is very different from The Cathedral. Whereas the Notre Dame is built in a elegant and light Gothic style, this church looks like a fortress in a solid Romanesque style.

There has been a church here over 1400 years. In the sixth century there was a church dedicated to Thomas the Apostle here, but the current church dates back to 1196. It was under construction for 330 years and was completed in Gothic style.

It is the main protestant church in Strasbourg. The city was a stronghold for protestants until 1681, when the French reconquered the city. As the cathedral turned catholic from this year, the church of Saint Thomas became the Protestant cathedral.

In this church there is a famous organ that Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart once played on in 1778, and another organ designed by Albert Schweitzer was installed in 1905.

Sadly the church was closed when I passed it. It will certainly come back for a visit when revisiting Strasbourg later.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Berlin: Akitama - a stones throw from KaDeWe




















Enjoy Food & Travel co-writers Dagfinn Koch and Malin Kjelsrud visited Berlin August 22nd to August 25th 2008. Here they had a delicious meal in a Japanese restaurant. Here is what they ate.


By Enjoy Food & Travel co-writers Dagfiinn Koch and Malin Kjelsrud


In the old west Berlin near by Wittenbergplatz you are recommended to visit the Japanese restaurant Akitama, with a chic minimalist interior and excellent service. We did, and were very pleased.

Malin chose a Tori Munaniko No Grill as a main course, a chicken filét delicately arranged in a heart shape with salad, rice and a very good and spicy sauce. She was particularly curious of how the quail egg tasted, and it tasted like - surprise; an ordinary boiled egg, only smaller.

Dagfinn went for the Aya-plate as main course and the Miso-Shiru as a starter. It both looked and tasted fantastic! And then Pudding time. We both chose the home made creme caramel for dessert, which Dagfinn described as even better than his own aunt makes. We sincerely apologize to Tante Bjørg for this confession on the net!

This pretty much sums up the quality of the meal! We nearly forgot the wine. a japanese white wine (Oroya), but when arriving at the table it turned out to be a Spanish wine chosen by a Japanese, but the dry and fine aromas were perfect to the food.

So if you go to Berlin, Akitama is highly recommended. The KaDeWe - Berlins Harrods is near by. So after shopping - go to Akitama!

More information see: http://www.akitama.de/

Monday, September 01, 2008

Around the world on Enjoy Food & Travel - August 2008




















By August 31st, 2565 of you had visited Enjoy Food & Travel. In addition to this, an average of 24 of you subscribed daily to feeds, bringing the total number to 3339 in August. I am still curious who you are, those of you that visit Enjoy Food & Travel.

Visitors on all continents

It is Feedburner that has made it possible for me to follow where my visitors come from, and it has been exciting to follow the increase in traffic.

From the humble start in September 2006 Enjoy Food & Travel has grown in size. In average I have published one story each day, and in a month or so the site will have more than 1000 stories on food and travel. As the site has grown, more and more of you visit. The first year I struggled to reach 400-500 visitors a month, now the number of visitors have increased five fold.

There are some hot spots. Most visitors come from the United States and Europe. In the US there are hot spots as the Boston, New York City-New Jersey, Washington DC area, Los Angeles and San Francisco areas. In Europe I am pleased to say that many visitors are in my home town Oslo, from neighboring Denmark, England (particularly Greater London), The Netherlands, and Belgium. The number of visitors are increasing in other countries as well as Spain and Germany.

More visitors from Asia and Africa

There are an increasing number of visitors from Asia. India, Pakistan, and Malaysia, where there are several visitors from Kuala Lumpur and Brunei. This is due to a link from the blog "What is in your tummy?" located in Brunei.

Another growth area outside Europe and North America is South Africa, and particular in the Johannesburg-Pretoria area. I have scattered visitors from different African countries and a visitor from one new location in Africa, beautiful Zanzibar in Tanzania.

Visitors from new countries & territories


In July I am pleased to see that I had visitors from new countries and territories on all continents.

I would like to welcome my first visitors from:
  • Andorra (Massana, August 2nd 2008)
  • Panama (Arraiján, August 5th 2008)
  • Færøyene (Nes, July 8th 2008)
  • Costa Rica (San José, August 8th 2008)
  • Mongolia (Ulaanbaatar, August 10th 2008)
  • Latvia (Riga, August 13th 2008)
  • Albania (unspec, August 15th 2008)
  • Macedonia (Strumica, August 17th 2008)
  • Tanzania (Zanzibar, August 25th 2008)
  • Oman (Muscat, August 26th 2008)
  • Bermuda (Hamilton, August 26th 2008)
  • Bahrain (Manama, August 27th 2008)
  • Dominican Republic (Santo Domingo, August 27th 2008)
  • Georgia (Tbilisi, August 31st 2008)
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!!



Around the world with Enjoy Food & Travel

See location of visitors to Enjoy Food & Travel on this world map.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

One city, four beaches




















People come from all over Europe and beyond to Sitges to eat, drink, eat - and to enjoy its magnificent beaches. When we visited Sitges last year, we knew what Barcelona had to offer. Sitges is however in direct contact with the Mediterranean. This year we could just cross the street and take a swim, whereas in Barcelona you had to take a metro and a 10 minute walk. Sitges is one city with four magnificent beaches.

Beach by Hotel Terramar

We start from the southern part of the city, i.e. from the southern end of the beach to Carrer de Prat de la Riba.

Here there are mainly exclusive villas and condominiums and a few very good hotels just by Passeig Maritime and the beach, as the Hotel Terramar. If you would like to take a drink or have a bite, you will have to visit the hotel or walk into the city.

The beaches are narrower than those closer to the city, and do not have the fine sand as further in. The good thing here is that the beaches are less overcrowded and child friendly.

The beaches in the city centre

From Carrer de Prat de la Riba to the cliff there are two large and one small beach. These beaches are wide and very popular, as they are by the main city centre with restaurants, hotels and shops just by.

This means that they are overcrowded, and if you do not live by the beach (as we did), you will have to endure the company of sun hungry men and women from all over Europe.

One of the beaches is a gay/gay friendly beach. If you wonder which, look for the beach with the men. The others are primarily mixed beaches, but as the liberal city it is, gay couples may enjoy a friendly atmosphere everywhere.

Closer to the church there is a small, but very wide beach. When we were there, this was a venue for a sand volley ball tournament.

Beaches north of Old Sitges

Just north of the old city you find a short but wide beach. Here you find less youths, gays, and singles and more couples with kids.

Here the beaches are interrupted by large cliffs and you may walk further down to find other and smaller beaches. Here you find the only nudist beach as well.

I do not like to stay on an overcrowded beach, but I still like to get a snack and drink. Do as we did, rent a hotel room on the beach front, in the city centre. Then you can just slip into your swimming gear, leave your hotel room, have swim, and go back to your room to change. A snack may be enjoyed on the beach or in one of the many bars and restaurants in the streets near by.