Far from a walk in the park
Claim to fame: Six years running and still serving up the unexpected with a thoughtprovoking twist.
Reason to go: Jacob Mielcke’s Nordic-Asian mashup. Smooth sailing in rough waters, never boring.
To look out for: The breath-taking wine pairings.
Jakob Mielcke, a chef with wild ideas and an adventurous mind once confessed that he sometimes enjoys making a dish that simply doesn’t taste good. Provocative? Of course. But there is a method to his mad maneuvers, let yourself be swept away – there are no dangers on this choppy sea, just know that the five basic principles of taste will often be stretched to their breaking point. Occasionally beyond.
If Mielcke wants to demonstrate acid, there will be acid trips, if Mielcke wants to demonstrate umami, there will be umami overdoses, but incredibly the dishes do not intrude on one another’s flavor spectra. Even more incredible, sommelier Jose Santos’ pairings that at first glance can seem conservative (Or shall we say classic) will almost always lift and twist Mielcke’s half-crazy compositions and make them cruise that extra mile. What to expect? Well, as a pioneer in the field of combining Nordic and Asian flavors, the fermented celery ravioli with crab kaffir lime oil, glasswort and frozen buttermilk is a stellar example of the house style, as is the surreptitiously simple dish of tomato, lobster and fiercely aromatic rose hip oil. The soft porn-boudoir aromas are met splendidly by Marc Hebrart’s rosé Champagne. The Mielcke contemporary classic of pickled mushrooms, in this case hedgehog mushrooms with elderflower vinegar, topped with caviar, is a textural and aromatic explosion that Santos pairs with a 04 Coulée de Serrant from Joly – the residual sugar and “protein” taste is a life vest in this storm. Desserts can veer either way here – this year’s best is a curry ice cream rolled in crushed popcorn.
According to some, the most underrated fine dining establishment in Copenhagen, Mielcke & Hurtigkarl just keeps swerving in new interesting directions. The spacious dining room that beckons themes from the beautiful Frederiksberg gardens is in and of itself a reason to visit. This restaurant is a one of a kind. May it sail on that way.