Saturday, September 08, 2012

Hamburg Rathaus

Hamburg Rathaus or Hamburg City Hall is a massive building located in the heart of the city.
The old city Hall in Hamburg was ravaged by fire in 1842. In 1897 the former building was replaced by the new neo-renaissance hall designed by a group of architects led by Martin Haller.
It took 11 years to complete the Hamburg Rathaus. It is a massive building with more rooms than in Buckingham Palace and a 112 meter tower.
It is located in the heart of the city at Rathausmarkt, and highly visible as one of the most characteristic landmarks of the city.

View North Germany from A-Z 2007-2012 in a larger map

Friday, September 07, 2012

Bite-sized food from east and west

Where to eat tapas in Oslo

I love to order bite-sized foods to taste with a cold beer and intelligent conversation. Tapas, dim sum, mezze, and sushi are social foods, to be consumed over a longer period of time. And they often end up less expensive too!

Ten years ago, these culinary traditions were hardly represented on the Oslo culinary scene. Since then much have changed. I will share with you some bite-sized experiences from a few very recommendable restaurants in Oslo. I will first start with some tapas restaurants.


Some of you may have guessed that I absolutely love tapas. In Barcelona I enjoyed my Patatas bravas and tortillas every day. In Oslo I have had similarly great experiences, and you end up paying from €3-6 for a tapa.

In the old Police Station at Grønland you find a tiny tapas-restaurant called Vann og Brød - water and bread. This refers to the food the prisoners were served in one of the wings of this large grey building. Here you can enjoy a great selection of warm tapas as small meatballs in tomatosauce and fried squid, and cold serrano ham in thin slices or manchego cheese, all served with fresh bread and aioli. You can even order a sorpresa, a selection of 6 tapas at €30 per person, and you really get more than enough for a nice evening. You can get a large selection of reasonably priced white and red wines, but the price of the San Miguel served in frosted glasses is quite steep, €6 for a 40 cl, and 7,50 for a 60 cl. So try it! It is a charming, and an unusual restaurant.

Adress: Tøyenbekken 5, 0188 Oslo
Phone: +47 47 28 92 68

Another great choice is Barcelona Tapas bar, situated in the charming Grünerløkka area. I have enjoyed high quality tapas meals here, at the latest a year ago when a few friends asked the cook to compose a tapas menu for €25 per head. We were ten, and we had loads of food on large trays. If you choose to visit this place by yourself, you'll find that the price of the tapas is in the same range as Vann og Brød. This means that €50 will get you a very long way.

Adress: Markveien 42, Oslo
Phone +47 22 37 05 00

Other good tapas places:

Cafe Tenerife: Youngstorget 6. A charming small cafe in the old bazaars, serving traditional Spanish foods and a large selection of tapas. This restaurant offers a great place to sit outside and enjoy your food, under the old archways.

San Leandro: Two tapas restaurants situated in the Vika and Majorstuen areas. A selection of tapas at €3,50 and Spanish cured meats. You may order special menus ranging in price from €25 - 40, where you can get a selection of different tapas.

Adress: Haakon VII gate 10, o161 Oslo
Phone: +47 22 83 34 44

Adress: Sporveisgaten 35B, 0354 Oslo
Phone: +47 23 33 00 33

See other restaurants visited in Oslo and around the world here on Enjoy Food & Travel!

See restaurants reviewed here on Enjoy Food & Travel

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Rating Delicatessen - Oslo

From left: Aïoli, prawns in garlic, fried chorizo, patatas bravas, fillet of beef and skewer (outside photo)
Delicatessen is the name of two tapas restaurants in Oslo, and I went to dine there. Delicatessen was a far cry from the best tapas-places I have visited, and is surpassed by many other similar restaurants in Oslo
Rating Delicatessen, Oslo: BBBB- (3,71 points)

  • Location: BBBB+
  • Service: BBBB+
  • Interior & atmosphere: BBB
  • Food: BBB
  • Beverage: N/A

Delicatessen, Majorstuen is located on a corner in Vibesgate, a quiet residential area in Majorstuen in Oslo’s west end, easy to get to, either by bus or by subway.
If you decide to dine inside, you are seated on rustic stools by small tables. The interior at Delicatessen is quite dark, and there is not much comfort to talk of. There is very little room at the table, and the seating arrangement is very uncomfortable. Besides this, there is practically no space between the tables - you are uncomfortably close to your neighbours.
We were attended by two young waitresses, and as there were hardly no one there (an ominous sign??), so we were given excellent service.

We ordered six tapas dishes at Delicatessen. Scampi with garlic, fried chorizo, patatas bravas, baked fillet of beef, lamb skewer with hummus and bread with aïoli. Scampi was a little overcooked and tasted very little of garlic. Chorizo was very thinly sliced and had dried out - too salt with no good balanced aromas. It would have helped to fry the sausage in sherry. The beef was delicious, medium roasted and served in a slightly sweet sauce.
One big disappointment was the skewer, as the small serving plate contained just one, making it hard to share. The Asian inspired side dishes were delicious (as I had a taste, but had no skewer).
All the tapas dishes were served on a wooden plate, with bread and aïoli aside. Bread and aïoli should, in my opinion, be served as a free side dish when you order tapas for 300 NOK (25 Euros), but at Delicatessen you pay up. The bread was slightly dry and the crust was so tough that you had trouble to bite and chew. Aïoli did not taste much of garlic.
So you are right, apart from the service and location Delicatessen was no big experience. There are a growing number of tapas restaurants in Oslo, and you should consider another one. Food was expensive considering the quality and you were not offered much comfort during your meal either.

More tapas restaurants

View UPDATED: Oslo on Enjoy Food & Travel November 2011 in a larger map