Friday, 16 September 2016


I'm a big lover of all things Scandinavian, so much in fact that when the waiter at Snaps and Rye asked how I'd heard about the restaurant I replied with, "I'm a Scandiphile!" True story, bro.

Embarrassments aside, my obsession is real. I have a list of London based Scandinavian restaurants saved on my phone that I am slowly making my way through. I think my infatuation with the land of the midnight sun began in 2009 when I visited Copenhagen, Oslo, Stockholm, and Helsinki at the end of my inter rail trip. I've managed to visit somewhere Nordic (almost) every year since that trip and have no plans to stop this tradition any time soon. My love of the region comes from their way of life, the effortless ease the locals exude and the eye-pleasing aesthetic of their style, inside the house and on their person. The food is another huge factor. Their use of fish and red meat, pickled vegetables, unusual herbs, and of course the infamous rye bread is unrivalled. In some ways the food is similar in style to British cooking with lots of meat and root vegetables, but it's the bold use of earthy flavours, innovative pairings of taste, and exceptional attention to detail that really makes Scandinavian cooking stand out as something special.

Snaps and Rye is a Danish restaurant with a weekly changing tasting menu. I'd been looking for a reason to visit for a long time but considering I don't spend much time in west London I never had the chance. When Sophie started working in Kensington we used this as an excuse to finally plan a visit, so with Lily and Michelle in tow we made the trek to Ladbroke Grove to immerse ourselves in some hygge for the evening.

The restaurant offers a four course meal in the evening, with a choice of two main courses (meat or fish). Our menu was particularly meaty compared to other weeks but the kitchen were more than happy to prepare vegetarian courses for Michelle and Lily.

We started with an amuse-bouche which I think was smoked haddock on rye bread. Whilst only being bite sized it was rich in flavour and captured the essence of Scandinavian cooking that I've come to love so much.

Deep-Fried Egg, Green Beans, Pickled Mushrooms, Parmesan

Out first starter consisted of the most perfect not-too-runny egg and green bean salad. It was simple but tasted absolutely lovely. I asked for no mushrooms which I don't think made much of a different as they were only a small addition on the side.

Smoked Duck, Artichoke + Apple, Red Cabbage, Rye

The smoked duck in our second started was divine. The meat had a deeply intense flavour and paired with the sweet, apple and red cabbage salad, the contrast in flavours was wonderful.

Pork Tenderloin, Celeriac, Scorched Greens, Parsnips

I opted for the pork main course but I did sneak a taste of Sophie's smoked eel (Flash-Fried Smoked Eel, Cider, Mustard, Kartoffel, Ham Crisp) which was lovely. The pork was cooked perfectly pink and was extremely juicy and succulent. The celeriac mash was lovely thanks to it's rich, earthy taste and the parsnips crisps added a nice crunch to the plate.

Warm Brownie, Berries, Sweet Skyr, Yoghurt

The chocolate brownie dessert could not have been a more perfect way to finish the meal. Rich and gooey, this was an outstanding brownie, especially topped with the berry compote and yogurt.

I could not fault our meal at Snaps and Rye, it was wonderful. Scandinavia might have a reputation for being expensive but four courses for £35 is exceptionally good value, even by London standards. The restaurant itself definitely invokes hygge vibes with it's soft light and simple furnishings and there's even a little section where you can buy Danish snacks. I will definitely be back for dinner as the weekly changing menu means there's always something new try. I'm particularly interested in visiting for brunch and/or lunch too.

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  1. Gosh I'm desperate to go back - was so delicious!

  2. This looks amazing! So sad I had to miss out!

    - Elodie x


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