Oh, so many great things to do in Copenhagen this weekend - thank God it’s a long one, with constitution day yesterday and Whit Monday, because there are plenty of things to choose from! I already know my weekend is going to be awesome, because my two lovely and hilarious sisters arrived last night to spend it with me! I hope yours will rock as well, and maybe one or two of these events can help make it so. I’ve selected my top five picks below.
I love wine! And I wish I knew more about it than “I like this one” and “that one has a lot of tannins”. Therefore, I’m beyond thrilled that I’ve found a small wine import company here in Copenhagen (O.M. Nielsen Vinimport) that regularly hosts wine tastings in Frederiksberg. I’ve written about my first tasting focusing the color of wine, and last week I attended a second one. When I read the announcement, I knew I had to go: a rosé wine and chocolate pairing! I love rosé wines, especially in the summer I find them so amazing and versatile, to fish, a light salad, or some pasta on the balcony - my choice is a crisp and chilled rosé. I have to admit that I know shockingly little about them, so I went in the hopes of learning more, and, of course, taste it in combination with chocolate!
The setup was to taste seven different rosés, three of them sparkling (a champagne, a prosecco and a crémant). To each of the wines, we were to taste a hand-picked and hand-made-for-the-occasion chocolate - some were plain, others were filled, all were delicious! They were made by Chokolade-Hex who really did work some magic! You can also find her on Facebook.
I won’t go through all the seven pairings, but will highlight some of my favorites!
On top of the list and at the start of the tasting stood the Champagne Brut Rosé, paired with a simple milk chocolate. I loved the champagne. It was so elegant and refined, and it was not as complex as some champagnes can tend to be. It had a lovely peach color and was very fresh and light.
The next one was the Prosecco Brut Rosé Spumante, which was as girly and soft pink as they come. Unlike a lot of my fellow tasters, I didn’t think it was spectacular in itself, but I really did like the pairing with white chocolate, it fit very well with the sweet, soft, girlish theme.
I realize I said I wouldn’t go through each wine in detail, but I need to name the third one as well - a Crémant de Bourgogne, paired with an exquisite white chocolate praline with Campari filling. To be honest, I don’t like Campari, and I am a bit on the fence about chocolates with liquor filling, because I often find the liquor to be completely overwhelming, so it almost feels like you’re taking a shot! But these ones were amazing. You could definitely taste the bitter notes of the Campari, but the white chocolate amazingly balanced this out with its sweetness. It complemented the Crémant very well.
Three of the “flat” rosé wines were from the same wine maker, called “Seduction”, “Sensation” and “Prestige”. My favorite was the one above, “Sensation”, which was paired with a lovely caramel-filled milk chocolate praline. On of the wines came with glass corks, which everybody was dying to get their hands on (I have two of those from other wines, they are SO practical to re-seal bottles when you put them in the fridge!).
My absolute favorite chocolate was a delicious white chocolate triangle filled with elderflower - in Denmark, there is just no getting around their beloved “hyldeblomst”, especially in the summer. It can be a bit too sweet for me sometimes, but in this case the sweetness was offset with some tangy lime, which worked amazingly well. We paired it with the “Prestige”, but to be fair, I could probably eat an entire case of those babies on their own!
The final wine was a complete eye-catcher, as it had a much deeper, almost red color, whereas all the previous ones had been soft peach/ rose/ pink colors. It was also the oldest one, a “Tavel” from 2010, and we fittingly paired it with a dark chocolate (50% cacao). It was quite spectacular, although not an everyday kind of wine. But if you want your guests to really remember an outstanding wine you served with dinner, this one is for you!
I find myself really enjoying these wine tasting events, and I’m already planning to go to the next one in 2 weeks! They have a number of events upcoming in June, including a Wine and Cheese Pairing and a Blind Tasting, so if you’re interested, check out their Facebook page. All tastings are held at Café Monellies in Frederiksberg and cost 250-300DKK.
(Note: I am not sponsored by O.M. Nielsen nor am I getting paid to attend the tastings or write about them. I pay for my attendance and what I write is my honest opinion. I did swipe one of the glass corks though.)
I suggested in my post on things to do in Copenhagen on the weekend of week 22 to go to the “Free Your Mind” all-day house festival on Refshaleøen. Being a girl of my word, I did go out there myself on Saturday to enjoy some music and maybe a drink in the sun. The weather wasn’t fully playing along, but we decided not to let that stop us! On the bright side, at least it wasn’t crowded!
The place is virtually in the middle of nowhere so I do highly recommend to either come by car or to be prepared to walk at least 2km from the nearest bus station. Not even the “havnebus” (boat bus) will take you closer - it’s about 3.3km to walk from the stop. I guess you could always take your bike from the nearest train or metro station or invest in a taxi.
Located in an old, mostly abandoned factory area, café Halvandet is situated right at the waterfront, with a beautiful view towards Kastellet and Langelinie. You can even spot the Marble Church’s dome. A straw-roofed bar is the center of the large complex, surrounded by different types of seating/ relaxing arrangements. Tables seating 300, over 600 deckchairs and even large sofa-like areas, all kept in white, all invite to lean back and enjoy the atmosphere. There are also activities, like beach volleyball, “human foosball” or kayak polo, that can be booked.
The bar offers cocktails, wine, champagne by the bottle, coffee, and non-alcoholic drinks. The prices are absolutely fair, seeing as they don’t charge any admission fees even for the music festival. A cocktail costs 70 DKK. You can book a table or sofa for 1200DKK (up to 4 persons) that is then used as “credit” at the bar for food and drinks.
They also have a kitchen that’s open all day. You can start your day off with brunch, there’s salads for lunch, larger dishes such as burgers for dinner, and snacks like fish & chips, which I tried. I like when you can taste that the fries were made from real potatoes, though they could’ve been a tad bit crispier. The fish fillet was good, and the remoulade sauce was very tasty as well (but I’m a sucker for remoulade!). I didn’t try any other dishes, but from what I could see on other people’s plates, they looked nice as well.
Generally, the place was clean, although you should keep in mind that it’s and outdoors arrangement, so I wouldn’t expect to be able to eat off the floor. Toilets are availabe and clean as well (although I can’t say what it would be like on a completely crowded day). Big minus is the availability with public transport, although one could argue that this just goes hand in hand with picking such a unique location.
I would definitely recommend the place. You can either decide to spend the entire day, or come for a nice dinner and a sundowner!
Opening hours are from 10am-11pm during summer season.
Wow, these last couple of days have gone by fast, and a lot has happened!
Top left: I went to an amazing rosé wine and chocolate tasting on Tuesday - longer review coming up!
Top right: Amazing dinner at LêLê Street Kitchen in Østerbro - elected Copenhagen’s best takeout in 2013
Bottom left: Wednesday’s soccer match between Denmark and Sweden - I wrote about it on Denmark.dk
Bottom right: Yesterday I ventured into Christiania for the first time ever and I had a blast with wine in the sun and a crazy concert at Loppen. Great burgers, too!
But now, the weekend is approaching fast, so here’s my list of things to do if you’re in Copenhagen!
It’s Lagersalg season!
What - Shopping, shopping, shopping! Lots of brands have clearance sales going on right now - for example Samsøe & Samsøe, Acne or Dryberg/Kern
Why - Because you can definitely get a bargain!
Where - all around Copenhagen
When - different days for different brands
How much - strongly depends on what you take home with you!
More information - AOK’s big lagersalg roundup
Øresundsfestival in Malmö
What - A music festival, mostly featuring lesser-known artists from Denmark and Sweden, but also e.g. Nabiha and Mads Langer
Why - Because it’s a great reason to take a trip over the bridge to Malmö and listen to some cool tunes
Where - different venues across Malmö
When - 30.+31. May, 17h - open end
How much - 1 day ticket 290 DKK, 2 day ticket 500 DKK (includes train tickets and admission to clubs after the festival)
More information - oresundsfestival.com/
More music: All-day house festival “Free Your Mind”
What - An all-day event with house music of all sorts, on Refshaløen
Why - Go there, grab a drink and chill in the sun! The music will be more chill during the day and pick up the pace towards the night
Where - Halvandet on Refshaløen
When - 31. May, 12h - midnight
How much - free admission
More information - on the festival’s Facebook page
A different city walking tour - Lucifertour
What - An open city walking tour focusing on the spooky and occult, “following the devil’s footsteps”. The tour only takes place when there’s a full moon, or on other significant dates. Attention: the tours are in Danish unless otherwise stated, but English tours can be requested.
Why - Because it’s a different way of seeing the city - guaranteed!
Where - meeting point is at the Absalon statue on Højbroplads, tour ends at Vor Frue Kirke
When - 31. May, 20h
How much - 100 DKK, registration online
More information - weirdwalks.dk
More shopping - Flea market at Nørrebrohallen
What - A large flea market
Why - Because browsing is always fun, and you might find hidden treasures! Afterwards, take a stroll through sunny Nørrebro
Where - Nørrebrohallen
When - 1. June, 10-16h
How much - entrance fee is 30 DKK
More information - event’s Facebook page
Copenhagen has a reputation of being very eco-friendly and “green”, not least because of all the biking going on. And it’s true, there are a lot of initiatives that focus on sustainability, environment protection and eco-friendliness. Copenhageners prefer to cycle or use public transportation (or both!) to taking a car, but they also pay a lot of attention to buying “økologisk” food and taking their old paper and glass bottles to the “genbrugsstation”. And there are a number of initiatives and projects driven by the state or the “kommune”, and I’m listing three here. These are all part of the larger, ambitious plan of making Copenhagen carbon-neutral by 2025.
Electric and hybrid busses
On my way to and from work, I often take bus line 14, which is currently served by two or three brand new hybrid busses, among others. These are subsidized by the Danish transportation authority, which has done a number of tests and projects on electric and hybrid busses together with the transit company, Movia. One good example is the city bus line 11A, which goes from Kongens Nytorv to Islands Brygge and is served exclusively with smaller electric busses. Recent tests with new, fully electric busses were very successful as well.
Grønne og blå områder
Translation: “green and blue areas”, meaning green spaces such as parks or woods, as well as water areas such as the beach or a “havnebad“. Copenhagen is already full of them, with a study showing that in 2011, 63% of Copenhagen’s citizens had access to a green or blue space within a 15min walking distance. However, this wasn’t enough for the ambitious planners at Københavns Kommune, and they set the target that this number should be increased to a whopping 90% by 2015! To me, this is one of the key features why Copenhagen is so attractive: no matter where you go, you will never be far from the next water or park, and the city is doing an amazing job in integrating these green and blue areas into the central parts as well, for example with the harbor baths in Islands Brygge and Fisketorvet (dubbed “Copencabana”), but also the super centrally located Frederiksberg Gardens, which combine green spaces (even some wooded areas) with water, plus they have a castle smack in the middle (Frederiksberg Slot) AND border on the zoo!
They have become a trend in major cities all across the world, and here as well. Rooftop gardening is a favorite pastime for urban city moms and hipsters, but they also offer great spaces to relax and forget the world around. Especially in a city like Copenhagen, where buildings aren’t generally high enough to steal each other’s shade, sitting on a rooftop among flowers and plants to enjoy the sun is great. The goal is to have 150,000sqm of green roofs by 2015. You can find a full list and some examples (including Sluseholmen, where I live!) on the website of Københavns Kommune. A full publication on the topic is available for download here.
Do you know about any other great, green initiatives in Copenhagen? How about the city you live in?