CASUAL BITES – As Noma prepares to close its doors, the search for the next Nordic culinary hit has intensified. Sweden and Finland are vying for attention, but it’s back in Denmark and the city of Aarhus that one of the most hotly tipped scenes can be found. Inspired by London’s Borough Market, the Aarhus Street Food hub is set in shipping containers inside a former bus garage. Grab a seat at a long table and feast on Vietnamese sandwiches from the Banh Mi Bandits, crepes from The French Corner and parcels of good old fish and chips.
There are also smarter joints and stalls selling caviar and truffles at the Central Food Market. Make for the outpost of much-loved Aarhus coffee shop La Cabra for killer cortados and home-baked sourdough bread.
SMARTEN UP – For a more formal supper, the one-Michelin-starred Substans and no-menu Haervaerk both serve forward-thinking, farm-to-table food. At Substans, a pared-back aesthetic – wooden tables, light interiors and a living wall – reflects the no-fuss attitude. Here, dishes such as rye-and-rabbit ravioli or rosemary ice cream take centre stage. At industrial-chic Hservaerk, menus are based on what’s been picked that day; the moreish pumpkin profiteroles are excellent when paired with a glass of natural wine.
CRAFTY QUAFFS – Breathing new life into the city’s bar culture is fresh-on-the-scene cocktail lab Gedulgt (an old Danish word for ‘secret’), a swanky spot from the team behind local favourite St. Pauls Apothek. At Gedulgt there are drinks that foam and fume, and hipsters sit around marble tables on Arne Jacobsen chairs. The masterstroke is the American Beauty, a floral cocktail made with Nordic gin and yuzu, and topped with rose petals. At bare-bricked Great Coffee, bearded baristas serve just that – great coffee. There are also freshly roasted coffee beans and curious-looking brewing equipment to bag.
A BITON THE SIDE – Aarhus is also 2017’s Cultural Capital of Europe. Head to the industrial waterfront to find Dokkl, home to Scandinavia’s largest public library. Across town, Olafur Eliasson’s rain bow-coloured rooftop walkway is at ARoS Aarhus Art Museum, which will host the city’s first Triennial in April.