Mahalle – fabulous Lebanese food in Copenhagen

When I saw the pictures of the food in Mahalle, a Lebanese cafe in Copenhagen, it was straight onto my to go list.  I had wanted to try the signature dish out for a while and I when I found myself close to the Mahalle in the city on Nansensgade, I thought I should give it ago (they also have the original location still in Nørrebro).

I arrived just after midday and whilst I was tempted by one of their mezze plate I decided to go for the halloumi salad (which isn’t really a salad as you will see) and also the citrus salad. The prices of the two dishes on the menu suggested they were not enormous helpings but as it turned out I ended up with a lot of food!

Whilst I was waiting for my food I admired all the gorgeous little touches all around the small basement cafe. 

Then my food arrived and I involuntarily said ‘wow!’ The ‘salad’ was a warm flatbread with a generous spread of delicious hummus, each segment topped with fried salty halloumi, a slice of avocado and a generous topping of pomegranate seeds, sumac, sesame and fresh mint. The citrus salad was a mix of orange, grapefruit and lime again topped with pomegranate seeds and mint with nuts and something wonderfully sweet.

As you can see I couldn’t manage it all but it was truly amazing! I wished I’d tried the lemonade with mint or one of the specialist teas. Definitely next time!

Kafeteria at SMK

Over the Easter break, my son and I went to the SMK for the children’s workshop and to take in a little art. I had also heard that Frederik Bille Brahe, the restaurateur behind Atelier September had recently opened a new cafe in the museum called Kafeteria. Looking at the pictures on Instagram I wasn’t immediately sure where in the museum it was but it wasn’t in the location of the previous cafe. We arrived and found that the shop and ticket office had moved sides and Kafeteria was in its old spot. A genius plan as it means you can come to the cafe without paying the entrance fee for the museum. As the area is billed as Museum Park, with tons of other museums, many without cafes, it is the perfect place to be.

It goes without saying that the appearance of the place is spot on; very Scandi but also very different to Atelier September. The menu was a little confusing at first as they offer weekly specials so the wall menu is pretty generic – for example it simply lists vegetables, meat, salad and soup etc. You need to check the printed menus for the details. The prices were reasonable but not super cheap but if you have an SMK year pass you get 10% off. However once we saw the food and tasted it, the prices make more sense. I had the cauliflower soup and bread, which was delicious, as my son chose the organic, slow cooked beef and root vegetable ragout (pictured below) and I suspected he wouldn’t managed the whole plate. Sadly I was left with very slim pickings as he loved it. I can concur that it was superb! We later found out, when I spoke to the chef to rave about the food, that we could have got a half portion for children, which is good to know if your child has a less robust appetite. The cakes looked lovely too and the coffee smelled great. We had planned to return for coffee and cake later in the afternoon but the place was packed with nowhere to sit so we decided to leave that for another day. I’m definitely coming back!

New Harbour Bridge (Inderhavnsbroen)

Inner Harbour Bridge (Inderhavnsbroen) had a troubled start to life, allows many news outlets the chance to use a lot of water puns such as a bridge over troubled waters etc and since it opened  this year it hasn’t been without its critics for example the gradient for cyclists is considered too steep. However there is no denying that the link the 180m long bridge creates between Nyhavn and Indreby and Christianshavn is one that has been needed for a while. Previously you needed to travel a long route around the harbour to reach Copenhagen Street Food on Papirøen and Christiania, both of which can now be easily reached on foot or by bike. In fact it is estimated that 16,000 pedestrians and cyclists use it daily.

It also gives amazing vistas of the inner harbour and the sunsets here. We took a walk over the bridge a few weeks ago on our way to Copenhagen Street Food and also to check out the established art installation outside Nordatlantens Brygge art centre.

But the big excitement, especially when you are seven years old, was seeing the bridge open to let through a barge. The bridge does not raise but moves back into itself. There was a quite a crowd to watch this happen and several runners took the challenge to run across the bridge before it started to move back.

PostBox – culture oasis

A few weeks ago I received an email about a forthcoming pop up project in the city centre close to the main station, called Postbox. I headed over there with my son last week and we loved it. It is reached by a long open corridor from the back of the main station as well as in the street below. I was amused to see some tourists looking at the signage curiously but when they saw us walking down the ramp they followed and I later saw them enjoying a chilled glass of rose.

Postbox is billed as a new temporary culture oasis between Vesterbro and City focussing on art, design and culture. The post office – the area between Bernstorffsgade and the railway station at Copenhagen Central Station – has been closed to the public and the site has been empty for the last couple of years. In the coming years, the area will be transformed from industry into a new neighborhood (but I’ll save my thoughts on this until I understand more about the plans, which incidentally you can see visuals of along the walkway to Postbox).

Meanwhile, the large car park at Postgrunden has been transformed into a temporary creative haven in the city. Over the past few years, Designerspace, the group behind Postbox, has focused on pop-up design markets for talented artists and designers but now they have transformed the large car park on Postgrunden into a temporary creative culture in the heart of Copenhagen. The vision is to create a city space that emphasises community through activities, design and culture.

The PostBox project on Postgrunden will consist of loads of containers with creative workshops, shops and showrooms. In addition there will be dining and drinking places as well as a lot of cultural events such as Dovne Sundays with brunch and children’s workshops, Copenhagen Jazz Festival, ThursdayChill, Rita Blue’s flea market.

There is a little sandy area, deck chairs, a rose wine bar and an area where hops are being grown by Byhumle

Take the chance, before the area will be closed down and becomes a building site from 2018, to enjoy stroll to a huge and hitherto ‘hidden and forgotten’ area in the center of Copenhagen.
PostBox on Postgrunden runs from 6th May to 22nd October and is open Thursday-Friday 14-22 and Sat-Sun 11-22.

Snow day from the Round Tower

We had proper snow in Copenhagen last week for the first time in years. I decided to enjoy the view from the top of the Round Tower and was lucky enough to have it myself for a while. I was also delighted that the Observatory was open too.img_7616 img_7617 img_7621 img_7623 img_7624 img_7627 img_7629 img_7634

It’s the winter break so I’ll be back next week – enjoy the week if you are off work and school.

Anemone Teatret – family theatre

At the weekend my son and I went along, at the invitation of one of his class friends, to see a play at the Anemone Theatre called Frøken Ignora eksploderer. My Danish is up at this kind of entertainment but my son has quite limited Danish language skills at present. I was curious as to how much he would enjoy it. He was rapt all the way through, refusing my whispered offers to explain what was going on. It is only fifty minutes long so perfect for children. It runs until the beginning of November so it may be something to consider for  the autumn holidays as there are still tickets available. Don’t be put off if your child doesn’t understand much Danish as the play is very visual and fun (that said it is a bit bizarre so understanding the Danish still didn’t help me really get the whole thing).screen-shot-2016-10-10-at-17-05-36

The Anemone Theatre has been around for a long time, funnily enough I mentioned it to someone today who recalled going when they were a child when visiting relatives in Copenhagen decades ago. Like my son she didn’t understand much Danish at the time yet still enjoyed the performance she saw. They have an interesting programme of productions aimed at different ages of children so well worth keeping your eye out for other future performances.

Address: Suhmsgade 4, 1125 København K

Website and ticket sales


Kalaset – a little Swedish corner {from the archives}

We don’t often spend a lot of time in the centre of the city unless we are a mission to do something, for example visit a museum, or go shopping but this week we’ve had guests from the States and spent a little more time in the city than usual. Cue exposure to tourists en masse but that’s another post altogether! Last week a couple of girls stopped me at the bus stop on Østerbrogade and asked me the best way to get to a cafe called Kalaset. I hadn’t heard of it but Google had so I was able to help. After a visit to the Workers’ Museum on Tuesday my husband said he had Googled local places and this place sounded good and it was Kalaset again! So fate said we had to go there.DSC01020DSC01009

It is exactly my kind of place. A bit quirky, a bit gritty, very cluttered and a lot mismatched. Plus the menu was amazing. I am getting a little tired of the generic brunch menu offered in a lot of places, even when it is well executed so the Vegan Brunch I chose was a refreshing change. Falafels, hummus, tapenade and a mouthwatering Moroccan inspired warm lentil salad were the stars on the plate. My son forsook his pancakes to share my plate of food, it was that good.DSC01014

Kalaset, Swedish for party,  has been here for around eight years and calls itself a little Swedish corner of Copenhagen.  The little touches such as all the old radios mounted on the walls, the bare brickwork, which despite seeing this a lot, I still love. The cafe was cosy and sunlit, but you still got the feeling it would be very warm and inviting in the winter too. I definitely felt this was somewhere I would be returning to, and soon.DSC01011 It is open late and becomes a lively bar in the evenings with a happy hour between 10pm and midnight (at time of writing) and I can imagine it is a noisy, hot and fun place to be.DSC01012 DSC01017

Homemade jams and Nutella – perfect!DSC01018


Address: Vendersgade 16, 1363 Copenhagen


{Originally posted July 9 2015}

New sparkly building on Axeltorv

There is such a lot of construction going on in the city at the moment and suddenly buildings seem to be taking shape beyond just being a building site. Axeltorv 2 is one of these. It seems that there was a big pit in this location for a long time and now you can see the new towers on the site from well outside the city. My thoughts on the number of high buildings now springing up in the city are for another time.


The location of the new construction on Axeltorv seems to have been a long time coming, the demolition of the Scala building formerly on the site began in 2012. This location has a chequered history and is seems somewhat jinxed. The original Scala was a theatre built in 1864 and between 1912 and 1927 was the location for popular revue theatre productions. It was closed in 1930 and renovated but never regained any real popularity and finally closed in 1957. The original building (above in 1882) was demolished and replaced by a department store which was reopened in the 1980s as a shopping mall with entertainments such as a cinema and casino. By the time we moved here in 2008, this had been closed for a year due to lack of success and another demolition was on the cards. I find this history quite fascinating – that a large venue in such as prime spot opposite Tivoli could keep failing so spectacularly.


There were many proposals for the new building on the site and in 2016 the new Axeltorv 2 from architects, Lundgaard & Tranberg, will be inaugurated. A couple of the towers appear to be very near basic external completion with the addition of shiny facades . The plans are for five independent towers of varying heights, each connected by skywalks with an open public area or urban garden around the base of the towers. The entire complex will sit separate from surrounding buildings so it can be reached from all sides. The architects say the design is reminiscent of the old city ramparts and will be very environmentally friendly.

The complex will house businesses and the ground and first floors will contain ‘high end’ (I quote the architects) shops and restaurants and there are plans for a sky bar or restaurant on the 10th floor of the highest tower. This complex is part of a wider development of this area with Tivoli Hjørnet (Tivoli Corner) coming in 2017.

Halloween in Tivoli

We always have a visit to Tivoli during their Halloween opening and this year was no exception. We made sure we chose a sunny day last week and had a lovely afternoon wandering around. It is always worth sticking around until it gets dark for the real Halloween experience. The Halloween season ends on the 1st November so there is still time to enjoy some pumpkin fun this week.DSC01335 (1) DSC01343 IMG_2391

DSC01356 DSC01354DSC01363See our previous Halloween visits to Tivoli in 2014 and 2013.

August B – some theatre with your coffee

Over the summer we discovered a lovely little hidden gem of a cafe that had been right under our noses for some time. I regularly catch the 1A bus from Kongens Nytorv from outside the Royal Danish Theatre but I had never notice the little door on the side facing Magasin leading to August B. This cafe/coffee shop is located in the lobby area of the theatre and is used as the bar during performances.

It is a wonderful place with perfect little theatrical and ballet related paraphernalia all around, it is almost like a little museum. It is named after August Bournonville, who is one of the pillars of the Danish ballet tradition and was ballet master at the Royal Theatre from 1830 to 1877.IMG_1508

I just adore this stack of well-worn pastel pink ballet shoes and of course the flamboyant costumes. It had a peaceful yet vibrant feel to the place and there are lots of lovely little spots to enjoy a coffee or cake, whilst soaking up the theatrical atmosphere.IMG_1509

Where possible the food and drink is organic, sustainably sourced and Fairtrade. My iced coffee was perfect and I have been back a few more times since. It is a great alternative to some of the busier coffee shops in this area. And I love discovering all the little treasures on display.IMG_1513 IMG_1514 IMG_1515

Address: Kongens Nytorv 9, 1017 Copenhagen