SHARE
COPY LINK

MICHELIN

Rural Swedish chef wins first two Michelin stars

A Swedish chef running a restaurant in the middle of nowhere celebrated on Wednesday as his eatery became the first in Sweden outside the capital to claim two Michelin stars.

Rural Swedish chef wins first two Michelin stars
Magnus Nilsson, head chef at Fäviken Magasinet. Photo: Robert Henriksson/TT

Rising star Magnus Nilsson nabbed the double gong for his restaurant Fäviken Magasinet, located in northern Sweden near the Åre ski resort in Jämtland, more than 600 kilometres north of Stockholm.

But despite often being billed as the world's most isolated restaurant, tables at Fäviken are ususally booked up a month or more in advance – even before winning its two stars.

“We have peformed at international top level for a while now. More agile guides have noticed it before, and we belong to the most famous restaurants in the world,” the Swedish chef told the Dagens Nyheter newspaper after being told the news on Wednesday.

Nilsson trained in Paris as a sommelier and only became a chef when he moved home to open a restaurant in his native north. His cuisine focuses on what you may call a series of hyper-Swedish dishes, including raw cow's heart with marrow and wild trout roe in dried pig's blood.

The lavish menu has to be ordered and paid for in advance and costs 2,200 kronor ($260) per head. Drinks not included.

Most of the food is locally sourced or grown or caught by Nilsson's team themselves. And it's a job he clearly takes seriously. When asked by Swedish media how he planned to celebrate his win, he replied: “We're going to go to Norway to fish for cod next week.”

 

And here it is again mid-cooking, ready to be shown of in the dining room. #pigsfatmakesyouhappy #wellknownfact

Ett foto publicerat av Magnus Nilsson (@faviken) Feb 19, 2016 kl. 11:28 PST

Elsewhere in Sweden, Hotel Borgholm on the picturesque Öland east coast island, PM & Vänner in Växjö and Daniel Berlin in Tranås received one star each in the Michelin Nordic Guide 2016 as the culinary guide for the first time extended its accolades to areas outside of Scandinavia's big-city regions.

“International food tourists' focus will now also be on restaurants outside the big cities. That means new jobs, growth and development of the Swedish countryside when Swedish gastronomy receives this recognition,” said Eva Östling, CEO of tourist organization Visita.

Sushi Sho in Stockholm and Upper House in Gothenburg were also two of the new star restaurants shooting on to the prestigious list for the first time.

Over in Denmark and Norway, two restaurants were celebrating receiving their first three stars, the top level in Guide Michelin: Maaemo in Oslo and Geranium in Copenhagen.

The Swedish restaurants included in the Michelin Nordic Guide 2016

Two stars:

Frantzén, Stockholm

Mathias Dahlgren-Matsalen, Stockholm

Oaxen Krog, Stockholm

Fäviken, Järpen

One star:

Ekstedt, Stockholm

Esperanto, Stockholm

Gastrologik, Stockholm

Mathias Dahlgren-Matbaren, Stockholm

Operakällaren, Stockholm

Sushi Sho, Stockholm

Volt, Stockholm

Bhoga, Göteborg

Koka, Göteborg

Sjömagasinet, Göteborg

SK Mat & Människor, Göteborg

Thörnströms Kök, Göteborg

28+, Göteborg

Upper House, Göteborg

Ambiance à Vindåkra, Malmö

Bloom in the Park, Malmö

Vollmers, Malmö

Borgholm, Öland

Daniel Berlin, Tranås

PM & Vänner, Växjö

For members

DISCOVER SWEDEN

The three tasty treats that make spring in Sweden a forager’s dream

Although parts of Sweden are still under snow at this time of year, spring is in full swing here in Skåne in the south of Sweden. Here are The Local's top tips for what you can forage in the great outdoors this season.

The three tasty treats that make spring in Sweden a forager's dream

You might already have your go-to svampställe where you forage mushrooms in autumn, but mushrooms aren’t the only thing you can forage in Sweden. The season for fruits and berries hasn’t quite started yet, but there is a wide range of produce on offer if you know where to look.

Obviously, all of these plants grow in the wild, meaning it’s a good idea to wash them thoroughly before you use them. You should also be respectful of nature and of other would-be foragers when you’re out foraging, and make sure not to take more than your fair share to ensure there’s enough for everyone.

As with all foraged foods, only pick and eat what you know. The plants in this guide do not look similar to any poisonous plants, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry – or ask someone who knows for help.

Additionally, avoid foraging plants close to the roadside or in other areas which could be more polluted. If you haven’t tried any of these plants before, start in small doses to make sure you don’t react negatively to them.

Wild garlic plants in a park in Alnarpsparken, Skåne. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Wild garlic

These pungent green leaves are just starting to pop up in shady wooded areas, and may even hang around as late as June in some areas. Wild garlic or ramsons, known as ramslök in Swedish, smell strongly of garlic and have wide, flat, pointed leaves which grow low to the ground.

The whole plant is edible: leaves, flowers and the bulbs underground – although try not to harvest too many bulbs or the plants won’t grow back next year.

The leaves have a very strong garlic taste which gets weaker once cooked. Common recipes for wild garlic include pesto and herb butter or herbed oil, but it can generally be used instead of traditional garlic in most recipes. If you’re cooking wild garlic, add it to the dish at the last possible moment so it still retains some flavour.

You can also preserve the flower buds and seed capsules as wild garlic capers, known as ramslökskapris in Swedish, which will then keep for up to a year.

Stinging nettles. Wear gloves when harvesting these to protect yourself from their needles. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Stinging nettles

Brännässlor or stinging nettles need to be cooked before eating to remove their sting, although blanching them for a couple of seconds in boiling water should do the trick. For the same reason, make sure you wear good gardening gloves when you pick them so you don’t get stung.

Nettles often grow in the same conditions as wild garlic – shady woodlands, and are often regarded as weeds.

The younger leaves are best – they can get stringy and tough as they get older.

A very traditional use for brännässlor in Sweden is nässelsoppa, a bright green soup made from blanched nettles, often topped with a boiled or poached egg.

Some Swedes may also remember eating stuvade nässlor with salmon around Easter, where the nettles are cooked with cream, butter and milk. If you can’t get hold of nettles, they can be replaced with spinach for a similar result.

You can also dry nettles and use them to make tea, or use blanched nettles to make nettle pesto.

Kirskål or ground elder, another popular foraged green for this time of year.
Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Ground elder

Ground elder is known as kirskål in Swedish, and can be used much in the same way as spinach. It also grows in shady areas, and is an invasive species, meaning that you shouldn’t be too worried about foraging too much of it (you might even find some in your garden!).

It is quite common in parks and old gardens, but can also be found in wooded areas. The stems and older leaves can be bitter, so try to focus on foraging the tender, younger leaves.

Ground elder has been cultivated in Sweden since at least 500BC, and has been historically used as a medicinal herb and as a vegetable. This is one of the reasons it can be found in old gardens near Swedish castles or country homes, as it was grown for use in cooking.

Kirskål is available from March to September, although it is best eaten earlier in the season.

As mentioned, ground elder can replace spinach in many recipes – you could also use it for pesto, in a quiche or salad, or to make ground elder soup.

SHOW COMMENTS