Food & Drink
Den Gyldene Freden: The oldest restaurant in SwedenMay 16, 2016
If you are looking for the latest fusion eating experience, you won’t find it here.
If you are seeking the latest in techno light shows and sound effects, you won’t find it here.
If you are seeking an atmosphere steeped in a long history, you will find it here.
If you are seeking authentic Nordic home cooking, you will find it here.
At Den Gyldene Freden in Gamla Stan, they have been serving delicious Nordic cuisine since 1722. Yes, 1722!!
The diner list always has included famous cultural personalities mixed with locals and tourists. The staff is proud of their heritage and passionate about refining classic Nordic dishes with a modern spin without sacrificing authenticity. International influences are incorporated but the base is Nordic, interpreted in their own way.
The philosophy? You must make time to cook and eat fine food.
Den Gyldene Freden, which translates to The Golden Peace, is a surviving example of a Swedish 18th century tavern. Its environment and surroundings remain nearly unchanged since 1722, although it became a hotel for a bit in the 1800s.
In the 1910’s Den Gyldene Freden had its serving right suspended and faced a demolition threat. The owner at the time put it up for sale, and the restaurant seemed doomed. But artist Anders Zorn took over the entire property and did a complete refurbishment with the aid of architect Torsten Stubelius. On December 11, 1922 the new Freden was opened. Sadly Zorn died in 1920 before completion of the project. Prudently all his plans were in place and respected. His dream to preserve the old traditions of the 18th century came to life.
The upstairs Bellman floor seats 40 is for those who want to enjoy excellent food and atmosphere in a quieter, undisturbed setting. Since the early 1900’s the Swedish Academy has met for dinner on the Bellman floor every Thursday.
Food choices and preparations also are steeped in tradition. The restaurant has served meatballs since its inception, and cooking methods such as drying, pickling and smoking continue to be utilized. Respectfully they use as many parts of the slaughtered animal as possible.
Here’s an example of the starters:
- O.S: Herring & Baltic herring. With Swedish cheese flavored with aquavit and boiled potatoes
- Hope of Spring: Soup of the first spring nettles with poached perch and quail egg
- Goike Souvas: Smoked reindeer from Swedish mountains with horseradish, cream and mushrooms
And a few main dishes:
- Gnocchi: With tomatoes, wild garlic, sunflower seeds and aged cheese
- Freshly-Minced Steak Tartare: Served with capers, beetroots, onion, mature cheese and smoked mayonnaise
- Zorns Meatballs: The legacy of Zorn. Classic Swedish meatballs with potato puree, cream
Hungry yet? We are. If you’ve been lucky enough to go, let us know all about it on our Facebook page.