A surprise Des Moines encounter at the Louisiana Museum and dinner kitchen-side at Relae — Copenhagen


IAt the glorious Louisiana Museum, a contemporary art museum about a 45 minute train ride north of Copenhagen, we chanced upon a huge exhibit of work by Gabrielle Munter, a German painter we didn’t think we knew. Except the portrait used for the brochure cover and the main poster looked familiar. Turns out it was on loan from the Des Moines Art Center! That was strange.

Loved everything about the museum – the setting (on an estate with lovely grounds high above the North Sea), the architecture (a lovely old country house with modern almost Japanese-style additions that wind here and there), the grounds (sweeping lawns, gardens, paths through the woods) and of course the contemporary art and sculpture. The cafe was lovely too. Good food and we sat outside at a table overlooking the water. We have had the most amazing weather.

Tonight we splurged at Relae, a restaurant run by one of the many Noma-trained chefs in this city. We sat at one of three tables overlooking the kitchen which was fascinating, with all the chefs and servers moving around in sync with each other. It felt like we were watching a culinary ballet. The food was one of a kind. All super fresh and locally sourced and unusual. We got the “Relae menu” which was a handful of small exquisite courses.

The young couple next to us, who have a restaurant in Singapore, got the “Relae experience” which was twice the food and presumably, the cost. A few examples of what we ate: a thin pressed patty of raw trout topped with what we were told was green strawberries; two thin perfectly pink slices of incredibly tender lamb, served with sliced cherries and bits of roasted pinecone (or something like that); desert of ice cream encased in a thin skin of rhubarb. (There was no written menu so doing my best here.) No desire to eat like this all the time but it was a new Nordic splurge/adventure.

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Filed under museum exhibit, Scandinavia, THE ARTS

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