Tempting plates - Issue 173 - Magazine | Monocle

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Rolfs Hav

If you have had the pleasure of eating at Rolfs Kök, a fixture of Stockholm’s food scene since 1989, you’ll be happy to hear that the team behind it recently opened a seafood restaurant called Rolfs Hav around the corner. Restaurateur Klas Ljungquist and chef Johan Jureskog have created a tantalisingly fresh seasonal menu of oysters, goose barnacles, lobster rolls, crab claws, prawn cocktails, chowders and all manner of other delights from the briny deep.


Some of the city’s residents regularly pop in on their way home from work, pulling up one of the 18 chairs at the restaurant’s seafood bar – which is just how Rolfs Hav’s owners want it. “The idea is to swing by,” says Ljungqvist. “You can stay for 15 minutes or all evening.” The snug space can become a little crowded but it always feels welcoming. It has an edge of cheeky elegance too: there are oyster-shell lampshades designed by Stockholm-based artist Michel Bussien, while one wall is covered in an artwork made from salmon skin (trust us, it’s beautiful) by Swedish master tanner Lotta Rahme.

The two Rolfs restaurants don’t just share staff and enjoy the same level of popularity – they’re also connected by a passage through the wall and kitchen. “People who love seafood all over the city have found us,” says Ljungqvist. “And they keep coming back for the atmosphere.” 


Launched by Clare Lattin and Tom Hill, the restaurateurs behind Soho’s Ducksoup and Dalston’s Little Duck, this Borough Market bolthole recreates a Provençal cave à manger in a neighbourhood that prides itself on British produce. Pig’s-trotter terrine is served with Dijon mustard and crunchy cornichons. Diners are encouraged to share seasonal (not-so) small plates bearing such treats as crab toast along with nutty pied de mouton mushrooms, crispy purple sprouting broccoli or a polished potato pavé. The generosity of portions extends to the sweets, which are well worth saving space for. The brown-butter tart encased in pâte sucrée and flambéed with a gentle lick of the blowtorch is an offer that few will be able to refuse. 


Wurst und Kartoffelsalat

Ralph Schelling, Monocle’s Swiss chef, recommends the version of this comforting dish that’s served in Vienna’s Gasthaus Grünauer.

Serves 4

800g potatoes
1 onion
4 pickled gherkins
60ml gherkin pickling liquid
60ml rapeseed oil
3 tbsps flour
1 bottle white wine
700ml broth
1 tbsp mustard
1 pinch of salt and pepper
A couple of sausages




1. Peel the potatoes and cut into cubes. Put in a large pan with water and bring to a boil. Cook until soft. Remove from the water and drain.
2. Peel the onion and cut into small cubes. Dice the pickled gherkins.
3. Place a large saucepan over medium heat. Make a roux: add oil to the pan, then the onion cubes. Let them glaze. Add flour and let everything brown briefly.
4. Deglaze the pan with wine, add a third of the broth and stir. Bring to a boil. Continue to stir and add the remaining broth, plus the pickling liquid.
5. Add the mustard, salt and pepper, and let everything reduce until thickened.
6. Meanwhile, cook the sausages until crispy.
7. When the sauce is thick enough, add potato cubes and cook until they start to lose their structure.
8. Serve the potato mixture with the sausages. 

Fuglen Sangubashi

For its latest Tokyo venture, Norwegian coffee roastery Fuglen is slowing things down. Kenji Kojima, who runs the company’s Japanese operations (which include six cafés), renovated an old house in Sangubashi, near Yoyogi Park, adding wooden furniture and a stone counter from Miyagi.







You won’t hear the hum of espresso machines here: the coffee is ground, sieved and filtered through organic paper to make brews served in ceramic cups from Yame in Fukuoka and Yomitan in Okinawa. Customers can also try kokekaffee, steeped in a kettle and served with Norwegian brown cheese on knekkebrød (crispbread). “We don’t have time to serve coffee like this in our other cafés,” says Kojima. “So our baristas are enjoying themselves too.” 

Forno Conti & Co

If you’re planning to open an artisan bakery in the Italian capital, it probably helps if you are a fourth-generation Roman pasticciere. Sergio Conti set up Forno Conti & Co in Rome’s lively Esquilino neighbourhood, where it turns out sourdough loaves and sweet pastries such as maritozzi buns and flaky hand-rolled croissants. “I practically grew up inside an oven,” says Conti. “I wanted to make something different.”


Forno Conti & Co’s northern European influences are clear in its interiors, which are furnished with Artek stools and Japanese-style lamps by Conti’s wife, architect Germana de Donno. Places that serve flat whites and pour-over coffees might be unusual in Rome but Forno Conti also stays true to its roots, ensuring that classics such as torte rustiche (savoury pies) and Roman-style pizza rossa are always on the menu. 

Top tables

Until 1860, Belleville was an independent municipality of Paris and a hotbed of revolt. Today its rebellious spirit lives on in a new generation of restaurateurs redefining the capital’s culinary scene. Here, you’ll find a melting pot of cultures in which disparate cuisines collide in defiance of the status quo.


Mardi offers Scandinavian kanelbullar (cinnamon buns), French canelés and Japanese matcha marble cake, reflecting Belleville’s international community. “It’s a little-known neighbourhood where everyone knows each other,” says co-founder Adi Salet.
29 Rue de la Villette, 75019

Bouche means “mouth” and its name evokes “eating, drinking, talking and kissing – all things that you can do around a good table”, says co-founder Angela Kong. Based in a former kebab shop, it flouts the city’s bistro culture with small plates that combine French fare such as pâté de tête with international garnishes.
85 Rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 75011

For a digestif, visit L’Orillon, a wine bar that had a makeover last September, a decade after its opening. Its simple menu features the humble hard-boiled egg – a staple of the canteen-style brasserie that traditionally fed Paris’s working classes. It’s proof that Belleville remains proud of where it started, while being excited about where it’s going. 
35 Rue de l’Orillon, 75011

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