Snaps and Rye, Golborne Road
29 September 2016
In true ‘food of the worlds’ style this was our second attempt to eat at Snaps and Rye. The first time we’d set aside a Wednesday evening for our Danish meal, only to discover on the day that Snaps and Rye, which brands itself as the only Danish restaurant in London, only serves dinner from Thursday to Saturday. So we rearranged and made our way through the slightly autumnal air to the cosy Snaps and Rye on a Thursday evening a week later. It has a gorgeously furnished Scandi interior with open shelves full of artfully designed tableware, glimpses of copper light fittings, bare wood and white and red artwork on the walls. Having been to Copenhagen last year it felt as though we could have stepped off the London street straight into a Christianshavn eatery.
Dinner at Snaps and Rye is seasonal, with a four course set menu which changes weekly. The food was beautifully presented and felt authentically Danish. We started with a Northern Gold cocktail (Prosecco • Nordguld Akvavit • Angostura Bitters) and some small canapes served in a smørrebrød style. For those not in the know, that’s an open-sandwich usually served on rye bread, it’s pretty much the Danish national dish.
Our first course was a leek risotto with a deep-fried egg served on a ‘parmesan puddle’. I struggled to find the puddle although Joe and Steve assured me it was there, but it was incredibly delicious. The deep-fried egg was still runny in the middle which I found very impressive. This was followed by a fish course for Joe and Steve of Mackerel with Kohlrabi. I had the vegetarian alternative (call ahead if you want a vegetarian version of the set menu as it includes fish and meat) which was a beetroot and goats cheese salad. On first glance I thought this sounded pretty boring but it was by far and away the best beetroot and goats cheese salad I’ve eaten. Alongside the two main ingredients were small pickled mushrooms, walnuts and a seed crumb which gave it a lovely crunch. I actually think this was the better dish as the mackerel was ever so slightly overdone.
Steve and Joe had a choice of main course. Steve opted for the braised pig cheeks which were beautifully tender, served with confit celery and artichoke. Joe gambled and risked the cooked oysters with kale and potato – the risk was worth it. I had a warm mushroom, almond and pistachio pate on rye bread. This turned out to be more of a terrine made with briochey bread crumbs and chunks of mushroom and nuts, it was comforting and I’d go back again just for that. Dessert was lemon cream with ginger snap and sorrel sugar. The lemon cream was very good although not unusual but the sorrel sugar gave it an edge and made it feel more Danish than your average lemon dessert.
We enjoyed our meal so much we were tempted by an after dinner drink. Joe and Steve sampled the Danish beer – an Ærø walnut beer and Ærø IPA. The walnut beer was particularly unusual and very pleasant. I had a coffee snaps which was an excellent pallet cleanser.
Overall, delicious, beautifully presented food with excellent, welcoming service and an authentic feel. We’d go back.
Menu for 29th + 30th September & 1st October
Leek Risotto, Parmesan Puddle, Deep-Fried Egg, Burnt Onion
Mackerel, Kohlrabi, Black Radish
Braised Pig Cheeks, Confit Celery, Pickled Tarragon, Crisp Artichoke
Oysters, Vermouth, Shallots + Gamle Ole Cheese, Kale, Potato, Seaweed Tuile
Lemon Cream, Ginger Snap Crumb, Raspberries, Sorrel Sugar
Beetroot + Goat’s Cheese • Walnuts • Pickled Mushrooms + Seed Crumb
Warm Mushroom Almond Pistachio Paté on Toasted Rye • Spinach • Kale on the side