Nordic Tapas Dinner Experience at 26North

I have been to 26North Stavanger before (see previous blog entry ) and back then I was pretty happy with the visit. First of all I’m glad to see that hotel restaurants in Stavanger is now making an effort into trying to be restaurants for the town and not only for the hotel guests – and there seems to be a focus on using local ingredients in the food as well. We visited 26North Stavanger in January 2019 as they had a special offer called “Nordic Tapas Dinner Experience” We booked a table at 7 PM on a Friday (you actually have to book tickets a day in advance on eBillett) and when we got there the restaurant was pretty quiet. The restaurant has a good setup as there are room for both couples, small and large groups. We ordered some wine to start with and got a small loaf served with butter and aioli. 

As we had booked this experience in advance, the first round of food was served quite fast. The first round had focus on “fjords” and hence it was seafood. 26North use wood plates for the serving which I think is fun and rustic. The starter was a deconstructed fish soup – a bowl with a scallop, salmon, shrimp and some vegetables and on the side there was a bottle of soup to pour into the bowl. I enjoyed this dish as the soup itself was rich and there were good chunks of fish in the bowl. On the plate there was also a big scallop shell, and this was filled with pollock (sei in Norwegian) sashimi topped with onion and apple. The vegetables on top had a zing to them as they had been in lime/lemon but the pollock was a bit dry. Then again, I’m not that into sashimi in the first place. The third starter on this plate was salmon that seemed to have an Indian twist to it. Maybe it was garam masala that was the spice that had been used but together with the caviar (I think the fish eggs was also from salmon) it was maybe a bit on the salty side.

The second part of the meal had focus on “farm” and hence it was meat. Again, since we had pre-booked this, the meat was served very fast. On the platter there was three kinds of meat: strips of sirloin (ytrefilet in Norwegian), a small lamb shank, and piece of pork (I think it was pork neck). On the side there was some potatoes and some vegetables and two sauces (red wine sauce and choron sauce). All in all, quite a large portion and find a good presentation.  Our first reaction when cutting into the sirloin was that it was lukewarm and not very tender. The lamb shank had the same problem – it was not very warm and it was drier than I hoped it would be but it did have a good rosemary taste. The porn neck was the best part of the meat as it was quite tender (and warm). The sauces were both quite good and I enjoyed dipping both meat and the excellent roasted potatoes into the choron sauce.

After this we were asked if we wanted to wait a bit before the dessert and we said yes to that as we had only been in the restaurant for about 35 minutes when we got the meat served. When we got the dessert, it was also served on a wooden platter and it contained a brownie (with white and dark chocolate), a carrot cake, a small Créme Brûlée and something that I’m actually a bit uncertain about. The dark part of the brownie was good but I’m not sure if this can be called a brownie – it was more like a ganache cake if you ask me. The white chocolate part was a bit chewy so I’m not sure what happened to that. I enjoyed the carrot cake and Créme Brûlée was also good.

Conclusion: All in all I have to say that I was not super impressed with 26North this time. When I have been there in the past, I have ordered from the à la carte menu and I have been happy with that. It seemed like most of the other guests were just ordering from the à la carte menu this evening. The “Nordic Tapas Dinner Experience” is a special offer in January and February of 2019. I find it a bit strange that the meat is served lukewarm when we had booked this food in advance and we came to the restaurant according to our booking. So next time I go to 26North Stavanger, I will book from the à la carte menu and wait a bit for the food to be served.

Location: Løkkeveien 26 - see Google map
Price for the food on this visit: 475 Norwegian kroner per person (55 USD)

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