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Three Perfect Days: Stockholm

Not for nothing is this Nordic beauty the unofficial capital of Scandinavia: Stockholm is a growing center of great food, cutting-edge design and postcard scenes of storybook bridges, canals and architecture.

Author Chaney Kwak Photography Nicholas Pitt

The Grand Hôtel, on of the whimiscal sculptures at Le Paradis Fantastique

Picture 3 of 16

THE DARK SIDE OF A QUIET TOWN
On the trail of the girl with the dragon tattoo

Beneath Sweden’s calm facade, menace lurks in every corner — or so Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Series might have you believe. Larsson’s crime novels, which have sold over 60 million copies worldwide, imagine a darker side of Stockholm. You probably won’t be roped into a world of intrigue during your visit, but you can still trace the footsteps of Lisbeth Salander, the fierce girl with the dragon tattoo. Pay tribute to the avenging heroine at her luxury pad (Fiskargatan 9), sip coffee amidst budding writers at Mellqvist Kaffe bar (shown) (Hornsgatan 78), where the late Larsson was a regular, or join other Larsson fans at Bellmansgatan 1, where the writer’s alter ego Mikael Blomkvist lives, for a guided tour of the sights made famous by the books and their film adaptations. Finally, lone wolf sleuths can pick up a Millennium city map from the Stockholm City Museum at Slussen for a DIY tour of “sinister” Stockholm.

BODY CAKES AND WAYWARD MONKS
If you think Swedes have no sense of humor, just look at some of the fun, singsongy names they give their dishes.

Skomakarlåda “Shoemaker’s Box” is actually a slice of beef, which arguably can look like the sole of a shoe, paired with mashed potatoes, gravy and chopped bacon.

Janssons frestelse “Jansson’s Temptation,” an anchovy and potato casserole, is an essential ingredient of any respectable smorgasbord.

Dammsugare The practice of making it out of leftover breadcrumbs earned this green and brown marzipan pastry (shown above) the name “Vacuum Cleaner.”

Kroppkaka The “Body Cake,” a snowball-shaped potato dumpling filled with meat, is comfort food that does the body good.

Raggmunk Though the dish has nothing to do with flirting or religion, this potato pancake served with lingonberries is a homonym for “a monk who picks up women.”

Flygande Jacob In honor of its inventor, a certain Ove Jacobosson who worked in aviation, this chicken, peanut and banana casserole carries the name “Flying Jacob.”

LOCAL KNOWLEDGE
THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM THOSE IN THE KNOW

Cecilia Zilliacus
VIOLINIST
When I came back to Stockholm after living abroad, I was struck by how gorgeous everything is here. Stockholm has so many places where you have 360 degrees of beautiful scenery, like Stadsgårdsleden, where you see the old town and the water.

Jon Åström Gröndahl
OWNER, WOODSTOCKHOLM FURNITURE SHOP
Mosebacke Torg, one of the prettiest squares in Stockholm, is my favorite place. It is pristine, but you have a lot of culture as well.

Marianne Köhler Skoglund
OWNER, AN IDEAL WORLD VINTAGE STORE

I love the Täby Galopp flea market. It’s a bit out of town, but you find all kinds of stuff, from ceramics to shoes. In fact, I buy a lot of stuff for my store there.

Berlin-based writer CHANEY KWAK has a mild crush on the letter Å.



2 Responses to “Three Perfect Days: Stockholm”

  1. JJY Says:
    August 1st, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    I was pleased to see that my favorite cafe was recommended here – Sturekatten. It’s one of the coziest places in the city!
    – JJY

  2. Lance Stamps Says:
    January 30th, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    Highly recommend the Grand Hotel Stockholm.

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