Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Fine Dining Review: Mathias Dahlgren (Stockholm, Sweden)

Mathias Dahlgren **

I decide to keep in line with the Swedish theme. While Tong was excited about exploring Scandinavian design  in Stockholm, I was pretty much excited about Mathias Dahlgren that has been getting rave reviews since it opened in 2007.

Mathias Dahlgren in a way was a compromise of not being able to get a spot in Noma (and this was before they became the world's best restaurant!).  Located in the appropriately named Grand Hotel Stockholm,  Mathias Dahlgren has become one of the hottest dining destination in Stockholm in just over 2 years..... scoring 2 Michelin stars and also ranking 25th in the more fashionable (but personally less reliable) San Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurant (2010 list). The restaurant is divided into two: Matbaren (food bar) and Matsalen (dining room) - serving conceptually different but still equally cutting edge food. We dined at the more relaxed but still stylish Matbaren.

Tong has been telling me that she wants to get those statement chairs...

We started with the Fried Pork Sausage and Truffles from Gotland (6/10).

The steamed Wild Cod from Lofoten was spectacularly fresh - like most Swedish food...the seasoning was slightly on the heavy side. Accompanying forest mushroom emulsion perfect and trout roe provided textural variation. This was a great dish (9/10).

Another standout was the Canette from Bretagne - a wonderfully tender duckling with fried mushrooms, cabbage, ginger and chilli (8/10).

Deserts were memorable. Farm Milk Pudding with vanilla ice cream and cherry sorbet. This smooth Mathias Dahlgren version of panna-cotta was delightfully light, refreshing - the quality and freshness of the milk coming through (8/10).

The Baked Wild Chocolate from Bolivia was our favourite. Amazingly strong dark chocolate flavours but nicely balanced out by sour cream and toffee ice cream (10/10).

Soft and gooey chocolate awaits inside the crusty exterior
Mathias Dahlgren is worthy of its hype and accolade. I can only imagine how amazing Matsalen would be.... 

Fine Dining Rating: 16/20

By Gastronomic G.

Rating explained:
Scores 18 to 20 = *** (3 stars) = World class and close to perfection
Scores 16 to <18 = ** (2 stars) = An exceptional and special dining experience
Scores 15 to <16 = * (1 star) = Very good to great dining experience
Scores 13 to <15 = Good but not memorable
Scores 10 to <13 = Acceptable
Scores <10 = Are you sure you want to eat here?