Gothenburg Files – East meets West at Norda
Visiting Norda Bar and Grill was one of the highlights of my trip to Gothenburg while on assignment. I honestly went there with no expectations but there was something about its laid-back vibe that really appealed to me. Located in the Old Post office now turned Clarion Post Hotel, a behemoth of a building in itself (another post on this), I liked how Norda’s interior designers subtly pulled details from the building’s past as a post office and incorporated it into its overall rustic look and feel while still keeping a casual atmosphere.
Wooden facades and columns from the old post office were kept and worked into the overall design. As for details such as napkins folded to look like letters, and those little white condiment jars? Cuteness overload.
Norda’s menu combines American East Coast style dishes – think cheeseburgers, mac and cheese – with local ingredients sourced in Western Sweden, and the culinary creatives behind Norda are chefs Marcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster Harlem fame and Jimmy Lappalainen. I ordered their take on the quintessential American surf and turf, which was pork belly with lobster, sauteed cabbage, and apple garnish which I enjoyed. I was dining with Sofia and Tina who work at the Clarion Post and I had to dig into Tina’s hand-cut steak fries with truffle-flavored mayonnaise. We left clean plates behind.
Above all, the laid-back vibe I kept picking up came from its crew. Now, I’ve always tagged Gothenburg as Stockholm’s nicer cousin. People are generally a lot less stressed here and you can easily feel the difference when coming from Stockholm’s central station to Gothenburg’s central station.
Life slows down. Drastically. In a good way.
Back to Norda, all the people I met briefly were really warm – from Magnus and Marcus who were preparing veggies and plating dishes to Marie who was rolling up some pastry dough in the backroom to Executive Chef Jimmy to Sofia and Tina who guided me around while sharing some good belly laughs with me to the ladies laying out those super cute envelope-shaped napkins, the energy among its staff was something that couldn’t be faked.
Date: November 9th, 2012 @ 17:51
Categories: Independent Travel