Scandinavians in New York City have their own underground circuit of home-away-from-home hangouts. There’s Scandinavia House, a multistory cultural center with a birch-tree-decorated modernist cafeteria (and much better Swedish meatballs than the ones at Ikea). It’s hidden on an overlooked stretch of Park Avenue at 38th Street. There’s the Mirjam Bayoumi Salon on East 78th Street in Yorkville, which, according to devotees, is the only place in town that knows how to properly highlight blond hair–those of you who are obsessed with creating Scandinavian-style pale wood floors will immediately understand the complexities and pitfalls of the task. And tucked out of sight at 5 East 48th Street, there’s Svenska kyrkan, a Swedish church with an all-white chapel and a homey cafe serving kaffe and Swedish newspapers; it’s a secret haven just inches from the madness of Fifth Avenue.
Photography by Marta S. McAdams.
Above: With its painted exterior advertising sild (herring), snaps (schnapps), rugbrí¸d (brown rye bread), postej (pí¢té), and aeg (egg), the restaurant feels like it was teleported straight from Denmark. It’s located in the Tribeca Film Building on Laight Street, a quiet, cobblestoned stretch just below the west side of Canal Street.
Above: The Copenhagen, originally called Aamanns-Copenhagen, was opened in 2013 by Sanne Ytting, a native of Denmark who felt the flavors of her country were underrepresented in Manhattan. She collaborated on the initial menu with celebrated Copenhagen restaurateur Adam Aamann, the man who made open-faced sandwiches chic again. All the pickling, smoking, curing, and bread baking is done in-house, and the offerings change every three weeks. Nordic dinners and Sunday brunch are also on the lineup.
Above: The restaurant seats 50 on classic Arne Jacobsen Ant Chairs from Fritz Hansen. The space was designed by Anders Busk Faarborg of Fobsi Studio in Copenhagen as a white-on-white showcase of modern and contemporary Danish style.