Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Experience the New Nordic Cuisine Movement in Copenhagen
Copenhagen is ground zero for the New Nordic Cuisine movement that has taken the culinary world by storm over the past couple of decades. This innovative approach to cooking focuses on simplicity and letting the high-quality seasonal ingredients of Scandinavia shine. For foodies, Copenhagen offers the ultimate opportunity to taste this style of cuisine from some of the world's most acclaimed chefs.
Noma, repeatedly ranked as the #1 restaurant in the world, kickstarted the New Nordic Cuisine revolution back in the early 2000s under renowned chef René Redzepi. By celebrating the purity of ingredients like fish straight from the North Sea or herbs just picked from the forest floor, Noma showed the world what Scandinavian cooking is capable of. The tasting menu is an artistic showcase of these hyperlocal ingredients transformed through meticulous techniques like fermenting. Reserve months in advance to experience 20+ courses of mindblowing flavors.
For another Michelin-starred take on New Nordic Cuisine, Geranium also dazzles with a vegetable-focused seasonal menu courtesy of Bocuse d’Or winner chef Rasmus Kofoed. Housed in a cool greenhouse setting, Geranium takes farm-to-table to the extreme with ingredients grown steps away at its biodynamic garden. Beyond impeccable technique, the cuisine exudes purity, lightness and delicacy.
Leave the Michelin pomp behind by grabbing an open-faced smørrebrød sandwich from Hań e most iconic and beloved New Nordic staples. The ingredients are familiar - smoked fish, pickled veggies, dark rye bread - but combined artfully. Grab a brew and sandwich at coffee shops like Coffee Collective for an authentic local experience.
For casual New Nordic fare, drop by Höst for sharing plates like tartares and carpaccios that hero the seafood and organic produce. The vibe is lively and unpretentious but the food quality rivals fine dining. Or check out Relae, another Noma alum's laidback bistro focusing on simplicity and technique.
Beyond the restaurants, visit Torvehallerne food market to browse New Nordic-inspired chocolates, cheeses, baked goods and more from small batch artisans. Sign up for a food tour or cooking class to further immerse yourself in this world-renowned food philosophy.
What else is in this post?
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Experience the New Nordic Cuisine Movement in Copenhagen
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Taste Your Way Through Aarhus, Denmark's Rising Foodie City
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Escape to Bornholm Island's Charming Fishing Villages and Farm-to-Table Restaurants
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Sample the Freshest Seafood Straight from the North Sea in Skagen
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Indulge in Michelin-Starred Fine Dining in Tivoli Gardens
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Try Iconic Smørrebrød Open-Faced Sandwiches in Their Homeland
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Tour Picturesque Wineries and Distilleries Across Funen Island
- Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Stay in a Cozy Countryside Inn with Organic, Locally-Sourced Meals
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Taste Your Way Through Aarhus, Denmark's Rising Foodie City
While Copenhagen hogs the limelight as Denmark's premier food destination, the country's second largest city, Aarhus, has rapidly emerged as a dynamic foodie hotspot over the past decade. With a blossoming dining scene centered around local ingredients and warm hospitality, Aarhus offers a distinctly Danish yet laidback gourmet getaway.
As a university town, Aarhus exudes youthful energy and experimentation, especially within its booming restaurant scene. Eating Aarhus is all about appreciating the area's natural bounty, from ultra-fresh seafood straight from the bay to lush produce from the surrounding farmlands. Menus change frequently based on seasonal availability rather than imports.
Seafood reigns supreme at Destination Aarhus. Sit outside on the pier overlooking the water while feasting on impossibly sweet langoustines, just-caught prawns, and flaky whitefish simply prepared to highlight their pure flavors. Nearby LØVES delicatessen sources from local fishermen to assemble beautiful composed seafood plates. The adjoining restaurant LØVES Bøfhus then transforms the catch into elegant mains alongside Aarhus' best natural wines.
While seafood abounds, Aarhus' emerging farm-to-table ethos shines at cozy Figen. Their set menu spotlights ultra-local greens and vegetables often plucked straight from the restaurant's own garden that morning. Dishes like roasted carrots with chanterelles or tomatoes with berries celebrate the essence of each ingredient. For fine dining with Nordic flair, Substans delivers artful sharing plates paired with natural wines within a serene glass pavilion surrounded by nature.
Beyond white tablecloth experiences, Aarhus' street food game delights. Grab a classic fish burger from Nordic Street Food and watch the chefs crank them out minutes from the harbor. Central Food Market packs in stalls slinging Thai curries, ramen, tacos and more perfect for grabbing and picnicking along the river.
No visit is complete without smørrebrød, Denmark's iconic open-faced sandwiches. Aarhus favorites include LØVEs, where seafood is presented upon rye bread like art, and Oli Nico, run by acclaimed Noma alum Niclas Kristiansen. His creative combos include steak tartare with marinated carrots and chicken liver parfait with pickled blackberries. Pair with local craft beer or aquavit for the quintessential Aarhus experience.
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Escape to Bornholm Island's Charming Fishing Villages and Farm-to-Table Restaurants
Bornholm Island sits adrift in the Baltic Sea, yet feels quintessentially Danish with its colorful harbors dotted with red-roofed houses, imposing round churches, and bucolic countryside. This peaceful island offers an escape into a slower way of life centered around nature and food. Eating your way across Bornholm promises indulgence paired with relaxation.
The island exudes a certain calm only found in remote places. Spend your days meandering cobblestoned medieval towns like Gudhjem, renowned for smoked fish, and Allinge-Sandvig, featuring dramatic seaside cliffs. Between pastel cottages, find dockside smokehouses crafting Bornholm specialties like herring and salmon using century-old techniques. Follow winding roads through green woods and rolling fields to reach family-run farms like Melstedgård, supplying the island’s restaurants with organic produce and dairy.
At the island's charming bed & breakfasts, start your day fueled by a traditional Scandinavian breakfast showcasing Bornholm’s freshest seasonal ingredients. Housemade granola with yogurt and island strawberries, fluffy pancakes with elderflower syrup, smoked salmon with potato rösti – fuel up on specialties prepared with care by your hosts.
At night, cozy up to a harborfront table to watch the boats return with the catch of the day as you sip Bornholm-brewed beer. Choose your own just-plucked langoustine or fillet of smoked herring from the daily chalkboard menu at smokehouses like Hasle Røgeri. Perfectly prepared fish needs little adornment – some simply toasted rye bread and lemon or dill dressing allows the flavors to speak for themselves.
Beyond smokehouses, restaurants across the island celebrate Bornholm's natural bounty. Brændegård focuses on sharing plates that highlight both land and sea, such as salt-baked beets served alongside just-caught green shrimp. Their ingredients hail straight from the restaurant's own farm, where they raise pigs, chickens, and cows organically.
At Melsted Badehotel's cozy restaurant, feast on their generational family recipes using produce from their biodynamic gardens out back. Dishes like goose confit or salt-baked rutabaga with pickled elderberry uplift humble local ingredients into refined plates, best enjoyed on their sea-facing patio.
For fine dining, Kadeau Bornholm weaves foraged treats like spruce shoots and wild herbs into their tasting menus while still championing Bornholm's heartiness, like hay-smoked goose breast and potato-cheese dumplings. Dine along the rocky shoreline with waves as your soundtrack for an unforgettable gourmet experience celebrating this Danish island's gifts.
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Sample the Freshest Seafood Straight from the North Sea in Skagen
With its windswept beaches and quaint harbor dotted with colorful fishing boats, Skagen feels like the edge of the world. This small town on Denmark's Jutland peninsula marks the northern tip where the Baltic and North Seas converge. Beyond just natural beauty, Skagen offers access to some of the freshest seafood possible, straight from these cold, rich waters.
Seafood lovers simply must include Skagen on any gourmet tour of Denmark. The cold, plankton-filled waters of the North Sea supply Skagen's fishermen with pristine catches daily. You’ll spot the boats coming into port each morning and afternoon, brimming with glimmering fish and crustaceans so fresh they seem to still sway with the sea's motion. Unlike much of the world where seafood languishes on boats for days before reaching port, Skagen’s fleet heads out for just a morning or afternoon of fishing. This proximity to the fishing grounds means you can often enjoy seafood mere hours removed from the sea.
Wander down to the harbor as the boats unload, where fishmongers bid on the choicest catches. Crabs scrabble across the decks, inciting buyer excitement. Langoustines the size of lobsters flex their claws, destined for the finest restaurants in Copenhagen yet often bypassing the capital to land directly on Skagen plates. Watch the harbormaster tally up the fishing quotas on old chalkboards as whitefish, herring, shrimp and more get whisked away to restaurants and smokeries.
For the freshest catch, snag a harborfront table at Ruth's Gryde or Pakhuset and watch the chef present the daily offerings like a treasure chest of oceanic plenty. Ultra-tender langoustines simply grilled, plump oysters freshly shucked, paper-thin slices of halibut gravlax – all impossibly sweet and briny thanks to their journey measured in hours, not days. Local aquavit and beers pair perfectly with this salty, sea-kissed fare.
Beyond harbourfront restaurants, head into town to nibble fishcakes and smørrebrød open-faced sandwiches stuffed with shrimp, smoked salmon and fried fish filets at old-school seafood shacks like Kusk or Høyers Gaard. Their coolers brim with the morning’s catch from trusted fishermen. For picnic provisions or gifts, stock up on shrimp, smoked fish and caviar from fishmongers like Clemens Fisk.
As an enduring fishing village, Skagen also retains its smoked seafood legacy. The sight of kiln smoke signals an authentic smokehouse like Brøndums Hotel churning out hot-smoked herring and salmon just like generations before them. Experience the sandwich version or go straight for the smoked fish platters with dense, planed rye bread and all the creamy, vinegary accompaniments.
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Indulge in Michelin-Starred Fine Dining in Tivoli Gardens
For over 175 years, Tivoli Gardens has charmed locals and visitors alike as Copenhagen’s magical pleasure garden. Beyond the fairground rides and twinkling lights lies Tivoli’s reputation as a dining destination thanks to its collection of Michelin-starred restaurants tucked amid the gardens. Foodies flock here not just for amusement, but for impeccable seasonal fare paired with romance and whimsy.
Nimb Hotel’s Restaurant Herman exudes understated glamour befitting its home nestled within Tivoli. Holding one Michelin star since 2008, Herman dazzles with intelligent takes on Nordic brasserie fare courtesy of Head Chef Rasmus Oubæk. Dishes like roasted monkfish with braised fennel and lemongrass sauce highlight premium ingredients with subtle, satisfying flavors. For the full experience, spring for the tasting menu to enjoy Oubæk’s culinary storytelling at its finest. Thoughtful wine pairings enhance the meal’s balance and richness. With its polished yet relaxed vibe and garden views, Herman makes fine dining feel fun.
Nearby, also at Nimb and sharing Herman’s star, Den Olde have specialized in impeccable sushi since 2006. After honing his skills in Japan, chef Andreas Bagh brings an eye for precision and balance to his omakase menus. Allow Bagh to guide you through a progression of pristine fish imported from Tokyo’s famed Tsukiji market and transformed with technical skill into sushi so stunning it seems a shame to eat it. From velvety bluefin tuna belly to sea urchin that melts across the tongue, Den Olde’s tastes linger long after the last morsel of rice and fish.
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Try Iconic Smørrebrød Open-Faced Sandwiches in Their Homeland
No trip to Denmark is complete without indulging in the national treasure that is smørrebrød. These open-faced sandwiches showcase the very best of Nordic cuisine atop a slice of dense, nutty rye bread. While versions have popped up around the world, nothing compares to savoring smørrebrød in its homeland of Denmark.
The open-faced sandwich traces its roots back to the 19th century, when Danish factory workers needed nourishing yet portable meals. Rye bread served as the base, then piled with cold cuts, fish, or cheese, and topped with remoulade and pickles for contrast. This working class fare eventually graced the tables of taverns and restaurants, where chefs elevated smørrebrød into an art form.
Today, smørrebrød excels as the quintessential Danish lunch. Leading restaurants craft elaborate, Insta-worthy creations, but don’t overlook the classics. Traditionally, a smørrebrød consists of a piece of rugbrød, Danish rye bread, topped with one primary ingredient and decorated with complementary condiments. Herring, salmon, shrimp and roast beef remain popular protein choices. The crowning touch comes from dressings and garnishes like remoulade, pickled cucumbers, tomato, lemon and fresh dill.
While smørrebrød is ubiquitous across Denmark, every region adds its own spin reflecting local specialties. In Copenhagen, bridge-hop over to Christianshavn for takeaway smørrebrød from Vika Brød’s tiny bakery. Their sandwich stars include roast beef with horseradish cream and marinated herring with curry remoulade. Pop into restaurants like Schønnemann for a more elegant experience complete with aquavit pairings.
Travel north to Aalborg to try classic shrimp smørrebrød crowned with the day’s sweet pink North Sea shrimp. The seafood version also shines in Aarhus, known for its freshly caught langoustine topping rye bread with dill dressing perfection. Odense on Funen Island brings the open-faced sandwich into the countryside with chicken liver pâté and pork crackling variations.
While in Odense, pay your respects to Denmark’s famous writer Hans Christian Andersen before making your own fairy tale-like open faced sandwich discoveries. On the island of Bornholm, smoked fish rules smørrebrød creations, like salted herring with chive dressing.
No matter where your culinary quest leads, keep an eye out for bakeries selling rugbrød, the dense, seed-studded rye bread that serves as smørrebrød’s base. Look for phrases like fuldkornsrugbrød or grovbrød to find the heartiest, healthiest loaves made with whole grains. Bring some rugbrød home and you can make your own smørrebrød creations to satisfy those Scandinavia cravings.
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Tour Picturesque Wineries and Distilleries Across Funen Island
Beyond its cozy countryside inns and smørrebrød traditions, the idyllic Danish island of Funen entices gourmets with its under-the-radar wineries and distilleries. Funen’s mild climate nurtures grapes destined for the bottle along with apples, pears and plums transformed into heady spirits. Touring Funen’s drink producers not only promises delicious sips, but also warm hospitality and bucolic beauty perfect for a laid-back escape.
Funen’s wineries number under 10, making touring manageable without an overcrowded Napa feel. Focus your visit on Lille Gobbergaard, Boserup and Fuirendal for a spectrum of styles reflecting Funen’s winemaking potential. At Lille Gobbergaard, sixth-generation winemaker Hans Stubbe Teglbjærg produces elegant cool-climate varietals like Solaris white and Rondo red. Pop the cork on Pinot Noir packed with red fruit aromas directly sourced from their own vines. Boserup dazzles with bright, fruit-forward whites like Kerner and Solaris, along with lush dessert wines coaxed from late harvest grapes. Fuirendal impresses with their careful Pinot Noir along with intensely aromatic Gewürztraminer and Riesling.
Beyond sipping onsite, most cellars sell bottles to enjoy back at your countryside inn, along with estate-produced jams, honeys and more. Pair your purchases with island-baked bread, local cheeses and charcuterie for the ultimate Funen picnic. For an even more hands-on experience, visit during harvest season to join in picking grapes or stomping them with your toes in old oak barrels.
While wineries abound around Bogense and Middelfart, make time to visit Funen’s northern coast where famed local fruits transform into memorable spirits. Denmark’s largest organic orchard at Fejø Frugtplantage supplies sea buckthorn berries for Fejø Destillery’s honey-golden sea buckthorn liqueur, vibrant with coastal berry tang. At Skovlyst Distillery, pears plucked just meters away become smooth, aromatic eaux de vie with each bottle numbered like a work of art.
Apples reign supreme at Ørbæk Bryggeri, a family farmstead where the orchard’s bounty ferments into prized ciders and calvados. Pull up a chair under the apple trees and sip Ørbæk’s flagship Cydr while watching chickens roam between the rows. For a true taste of their 600 varieties, visit for Ørbæk’s annual apple festival each October.
Indulge Your Taste Buds: 7 of the Best Gourmet Getaways in Denmark - Stay in a Cozy Countryside Inn with Organic, Locally-Sourced Meals
Escape the hustle of the cities and indulge in a slower pace of life at one of Denmark's charming countryside inns. Scattered across pastoral landscapes, these family-run properties welcome guests as if into their own homes, sharing hearty, homemade meals showcasing ingredients sourced from their gardens and neighboring farms.
At Brobygaard in Funen, hosts Brian and Jeanette serve indulgent four-course dinners starring produce from their biodynamic vegetable patches out back. Meals kick off with sharing plates like beets with goat cheese cream, onion compote and crackers baked that morning. Mains like cod with summer greens and basil cream highlight the season’s gifts. Take your food coma to the garden suite to awaken to breakfast breads baked from heirloom grains milled onsite.
On Bornholm island, unwind over farm-to-table fare at Espergaerde. Their bright, airy restaurant overlooks the fields where their livestock graze. Sit down to plates of pasture-raised pork with roasted root vegetables, plated with greens just picked from the garden. Work it off the next morning with yoga on the lawn before fueling up on Espergaerde’s hearty country breakfast.
In North Zealand, beds beckon at historic Krøgerup. But first, indulge in their candlelit Slow Food dinners marrying rustic intimacy with refinement. With ingredients sourced from their biodynamic gardens as well as ethical producers, each dish delights, from hay-baked rainbow trout to venison with wild berry sauce. Pass a relaxing morning strolling the estate’s impressive gardens to work up an appetite anew.
For full farm immersion, snag a table at Søvind Kro north of Silkeborg, where the 11-course tasting menu unfolds entirely from their farm. Feast on just-picked salads, pasture-raised meats, cheeses from their cows, and sweets starring their orchard’s fruit. Retire to the stables-turned-guest rooms and awaken to greet the farm animals roaming just outside your window.