Lunch at Bistro Oaxen Slip in Stockholm from the same team as the two Michelin star Oaxen Krog featuring Nordic cuisine, a stunning space, gorgeous waterside setting and every dish memorable!
Stockholm impressed us in every which way – it was mostly sunny and cool during our time there, narrow winding streets, architecture and incredible summer produce. Exactly the getaway we needed from the sweltering heat in Dubai. This was pretty much my first taste of Nordic cuisine in its true form and it definitely didn’t disappoint. As with any trip, I went armed with an exhaustive list of places to try and Oaxen Slip was pretty much top of it.
Right next door to the two Michelin star Oaxen Krog by chef Magnus Ek and his wife, Agneta Green on the island of Djurgården in central Stockholm, is Oaxen Slip. Both the restaurants are located in a refurbished shed at a boatyard and the interior design is inspired by a nautical theme. I’d think any chef who has that much Michelin recognition would be quite conscious of putting out a casual spin to his fine dining offering. So easy for comparisons to be made, expectations met or much disappointment is possible. That is what made me even more curious to experience this place. With its gorgeous waterside setting and a clear focus on Swedish cuisine, locally sourced and seasonal flavors, I was intrigued.
No welcome is quite as warm as the one that comes with a bread basket and good quality butter. By the time we settled in with our drinks and the rain came down hard outside, the staff was already guiding us through the menu and making intelligent suggestions. The service was both friendly and non-intrusive at the same time making it a great spot for a long lunch.
As a crustacean connoisseur, I was mighty impressed with the cold smoked shrimps with garlic mayonnaise – it was one of the most concentrated flavors in a mouthful I have ever experienced. Every bite had the full impact of the ocean-ness and the sweetness of the shrimps with the hint of garlic from the mayo really shined.
Our warm appetizer was the grilled peas bread with spiced, minced meat & smoked zucchini cream. Such clever use of the simplest of ingredients and a fabulous marriage of flavors – I’m still dreaming of how delicious this was! We literally fought for the last piece.
Our herb grilled Swedish char had the fresh flavors of lemon and dill. The fish (a member of the trout and salmon family) had beautifully mild flaky flesh elevated by a simple use of herbs & butter.
Gravitating towards seafood always, we couldn’t resist ordering the grilled, marinated king crab arm. Each piece was loaded with beautiful flesh begging to be mopped up with the curry flavors. Bites of the fresh coriander garnish every now and then worked really well with the rest of the dish.
The unexpected star of our meal turned out to be a side dish we almost didn’t order. The sheer burst of summer in every bite of the roasted tomatoes paired nicely with a garlic & tarragon dressing & chopped almonds. Letting the produce shine with minimal adulteration – the joy is really in the little things isn’t it?
We also got a side-order of the broccoli paired with Swedish hard cheese that came dressed with a sharp pearl onion vinaigrette. A dish so simple I’d probably give it a miss usually but here they managed to make it special.
Possibly the highlight of majority of our dining experience in the Nordics has been the desserts, which is saying a lot considering the fact that neither of us are into the sweet stuff. We saw no over the top indulgences. The focus was on fresh fruit, interesting pairings and play on textures. Like this Rhubarb compote with cardamom crumble & cream cheese ice cream, so understated in its brilliance. The rhubarb still had a bite to it and paired beautifully with the subtle touch of cardamom.
We walked out of Oaxen Slip with a big grin on our faces – it truly was that kind of meal. The cherry on top? The clouds cleared and sunshine made way for the rest of our day!
Location: OAXEN KROG & SLIP, Beckholmsvägen 26, SE-115 21 Stockholm