Eating my (gluten-free) way through Copenhagen – A Series of Meals

I am a big fan of eating. It is no secret to anyone who knows me: I am already looking forward to the next meal I will get once I finish a meal. However, one aspect of food that is challenging for me is my gluten allergy. Gluten-free options are not as easy to find here in Copenhagen, so I am faced with the unique challenge of finding food I will love without sacrificing flavor. Food is a passion of mine, so when I was told that Copenhagen is a foodie’s paradise, one might say I was a bit excited. The expensiveness of the food here does not really help my situation, but I have been able to make it work so far and enjoy the occasional restaurant meal in the fabulous restaurant city that is Copenhagen.

  

Classic Irish Breakfast - the Dubliner
Classic Irish Breakfast – the Dubliner

This was my first “real meal” in Copenhagen. I was still pretty disoriented and jetlagged given that this was on my second day, but being hungry I did whatever my companions wanted to do and went to a touristy Irish restaurant. This was great. The fries were hot, the eggs were perfectly runny and the bacon was bacon. I didn’t eat the toast, but wasn’t too broken up about it. Served with a glass of wine, I couldn’t be happier. Little did I know, there were much better options available to me in the holy land of brunches that is Copenhagen.

Sausage with mashed roots and beets - Sausage Cart
Sausage with mashed roots and beets – Sausage Cart

   

My first experience with Danish sausages, an encounter that will not be forgotten. After eating this hot dog/brat hybrid, I realized that studying abroad would be more than just traveling the continent and seeing the sights– it would be much more than that. It would be eating my way around Europe, an incredible journey. This Danish hot dog put all other hot dogs in my life to shame. When I finished it, all I wanted was another (but I had willpower and refrained). The fact that I didn’t even need to modify the order in any way to make it gluten free was a big plus as well. Hot dog cart, I will be back (I have).

     

Pad Thai - Arla Food Fest
Pad Thai – Arla Food Fest

Pad Thai is a dish I hold near and dear to my heart. It is what my mom orders every time we go to Noodles & Co. (unsurprisingly, no one knows what this is here). It’s delicious, it’s naturally gluten free and it is pretty universal everywhere that I’ve been. This Pad Thai, at the Food Fest, was extra cool because we got to watch the people make it in huge pans freshly in front of us, so we knew it would be good. Naturally, being the American that I am, I had to add Sriracha to it, but it was excellent. Great work, Food Fest Pad Thai stand. (Bonus points because we ate it while watching City Bois, the Danish OneDirection, perform at the fest… So that was pretty cool and now I can brag to all my friends that I saw them).

  

Prosciutto, avocado, spinach, artichoke cream on gluten free bread - Vita Boost, Torvehallerne
Prosciutto, avocado, spinach, artichoke cream on gluten free bread – Vita Boost, Torvehallerne

WOW. This sandwich was the sandwich that blew all other sandwiches out of the water. I just happened to stumble across a sign that said ‘glutenfri’ and boy, do I not regret that. This sandwich rocked and the bread rocked too. So far, my experience with gluten free bread over here has not been great, but this stuff was impeccable. I know you can buy it somewhere near Christiania, an area of the city, but I’m not sure where. I got this sandwich at Torvehallerne, which is like a big glass enclosed food stand place, and everything there is delicious. 3 cheers for Vita Boost and their sandwiches.

  

Prosciutto, avocado, spinach, artichoke cream on gluten free bread - Vita Boost, Torvehallerne
Prosciutto, avocado, spinach, artichoke cream on gluten free bread – Vita Boost, Torvehallerne

This restaurant rocked. First of all, the cocktails are served in pitchers, they played 70’s music the whole time, and they provided a plethora of dipping sauces for the awesome fries. Plus burgers. Can’t go wrong there. My burger had all sorts of yummy things on it – avocado, red onion, cheese, plus the gluten free bun – so all in all a great meal. The ambience of the place was great too, soft lighting, not crowded, plus the waitress kept laughing when we thanked her for doing things for us. I guess it’s not customary to thank your waitress when she gives you silverware or a water glass. I guess Americans are polite! Who knew?

  

The Red Brunch - Cafe Luna
The Red Brunch – Cafe Luna

I love brunch and I miss American brunch a lot, and this place helped alleviate that a little bit. The walls of the restaurant were all covered in pictures of New York City and the music selection was great, so the ambience of the place rocked. Also the food was delicious. My plate was filled with enough scrambled eggs, curly fries, hashbrowns, salad and sausages to feed an army, but don’t worry, I finished 99% of it on my own. If you’re looking for an American style brunch, this is the closest to it I have seen so far in Copenhagen.

Pad Thai - Cafe Loppen, Christiania
Pad Thai – Cafe Loppen, Christiania

  

More pad thai! This place was delicious. The pad thai was on point, and the white wine was great. I asked the waitress if they had a house white, trying to sound wine-knowledgeable, and she looked at me like I had three heads. Regardless, Cafe Loppen was really good and the hot chocolate post meal was excellent.

Taco Cart in Papirøen (Paper Island)
Taco Cart in Papirøen (Paper Island)

For some reason, it’s impossible to find corn tortillas in Copenhagen, so this was an especially good treat for me. These tacos, albeit small, were full of flavor and love. One of them had cactus in it, to be honest I’m not sure which, but I loved them both. Gluten free was not a challenge here, as I trusted the ‘glutenfri’ sign on the cart. They reminded me of BelAir Cantina tacos in Milwaukee, so that was another plus for these tacos.

Veggie burger with cornmeal bun, avocado spread, tomato, lettuce & sweet potato fries - Papirøen (Paper Island)
Veggie burger with cornmeal bun, avocado spread, tomato, lettuce & sweet potato fries – Papirøen (Paper Island)

  

This was incredible. Normally, I would choose a regular burger over a veggie burger, but for some reason I chose a veggie burger and I am proud of my choice. This was an awesome burger, and the bun was amazing too (not common in this city). Cooked to perfection, with the avocado spread perfectly creamy, I would choose this burger over a regular burger any day of the week. Plus the sweet potato fries were incredible as well. I practically inhaled this meal and would do it again. The corn meal bun was gluten free, as were the fries. I have come to realize that all food at Paper Island is excellent. * Not pictured: I got to try my friend’s fries that were fried in duckfat — insanely good. *

Brunch buffet - Frederiks, Frederiksburg
Brunch buffet – Frederiks, Frederiksburg

  

Last but not least, brunch in Frederiksburg. This came with a glass of sparkling wine and the feeling of being unbelievably, happily full afterwards. Egg quiche, scrambled eggs, hot dogs, bacon, prosciutto, lox, fresh brie, tomato salad, regular salad, watermelon and yogurt parfait. And this was just my first time going up to the buffet. There were so many other options as well (a lot of gluten options), but I was able to stuff myself to the gills without thinking twice about the gluten. This place was impeccable, and for the amount of food I got (I wasn’t hungry until like three days later). Definitely worth the price.

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