We wanted our first meal in Copenhagen to be something local and traditional, and were told that Ida Davidsen fit the bill. Indeed!
Smørebrød literally translates as buttered bread, which seemed odd to us since it's a slice of bread piled high with all manner of meats and cheeses and condiments and veggies and such. But then I pointed out to to my husband that sandwich could literally translate to a non-English speaker as sand and witch or which, yet it means two slices of bread filled with stuff, so who are we to judge?
The family that owns Ida Davidsen has been serving smørebrød to hungry people for 5 generations. Ida herself made our lunch, she is the great-granddaughter of the founder!
Favorite Dish: There were 250 varieties to choose from, but a lot of them we were able to rule out because they had things we didn't like on them, like caviar or foie gras. Eventually I settled on one piled high with shrimp from Greenland topped with a spicy remoulade. Sean's was roast beef with veggies, french fried onions, and a spicy mustard. We both had pan fried potato slices on the side, I don't know what spices they cooked them in, but they were out of this world. We were both trying so hard to force ourselves to slow down and savor our meals, it all tasted so good we found we were just hoovering it down!
Serves the Danish lunch speciality open sandwiches, and the list of them just keeps getting longer – at the moment it has 250 different ones to choose from. It’s a cosy little restaurant, and the staff is extremely helpful, when it comes to navigating in the jungle of different open sandwiches.
Many famous people are regulars, maybe hoping to merit having an open sandwich named after them. “Hans Christian Andersen” is bacon, paté, tomato, horseradish and fond-jelly. The pieces are quite pricey, but then you’ll only need one to fill you.
Having worked just around the corner from it for four years, I finally thought it was time to drag some colleagues across for lunch, seeing as we are constantly stopped in the square outside by Americans, asking for directions to this famous smorrebrod place which is now into the fifth generation of family ownership and frequented by the royal family. We were not dissapointed. Sure, one colleague spent her entire mortgage on a crab sandwich but hey, the crab was flown in from Alaska that same day and tasted divine and the rest of us ate for more moderate prices, considering where we were.
You enter through the little downstairs door, behind some white curtains revealing nothing, and are met by a glass counter packed with delightful smorrebrod. You go to the counter and the staff behind it happily tells you what is on each smorrebrod as was it their babies! You pick 2-3 depending on hunger and budget and it is then served at your table later. I picked a seaweed caviar and egg variety and a fried herring one, whilst one of my colleagues had salmon and wasabi rolls on hers but if you're not into fish there is roastbeef and lots more. Our waitress was an elderly lady who looked as if she has worked there since her career started and she was so Danish it was almost like a joke about Danes! She had a clever answer to whatever we said, such as when we declined coffee with our dessert and was met with "but maybe you'd like port...or some other fun" :) As I said, it's not a budget place - the Queen gets takeaways - but it is ultra Danish and soooo yummy.
Favorite Dish: What is NOT a favourite? I'll come back here once a month and try it all :)
Ida Davidsen is the most famous smørrebrød shop in Copenhagen... or so I was told by the Danish man I rented a room off after I told him I had had lunch there. Most famous or not, Ida Davidsen's smørrebrød may just be the best thing since sliced bread!
The man I stayed with told me that the Davidsens had been making smørrebrød since the 1880's and that when the Nazi's occupied Denmark, the family had the most elegant and popular restaurant in Copenhagen (famous all over Europe) and the Nazi generals offered the family any support and all supplies if they would stay open and serve the Nazi hierarchy. Supposably, rather than serve the Nazi's the Davidsen running the shop at the time closed up and left Europe. After the fall of the Nazi's they returned and began serving smørrebrød again. I have no idea how factual this story is, but it's what I was told. All I can say is I am so glad they are still in business.
The smørrebrød themselves are delicious and the menu is huge. Everything is extremely fresh and of the finest quality and the flavours are blended together superbly. If they have anything with Fjord prawns or Greenland prawns, order it. They are some of the sweetest little prawns you'll ever devour.
In all honesty I cannot recommend this dining experience enough. If you're in Copenhagen: eat at Ida Davidsen!
Favorite Dish: I loved the Greenland shrimp with egg, amd lime and dill mayonnaise.
The mix of sweet and savory on the salami with smoked cheese and blueberry sauce was also extremely good.
Probably the top form a Smorrebrod can reach, fantasy a gogo, some kind of retro atmosphere adn some funny ladies serving in the room.
This is Ida Davidsen, a must for food lovers.
Favorite Dish: All Smorrebrod, and do not forget to drink Aquavit.
It all started with serving little pieces of bread at lunchtime... Smorrebrod is still what is was 100 years ago. And at Ida Davidsen it is still in that tradition that they try to make the best Smorrebrod in town...
Favorite Dish: Everything...:-)
Hilton Copenhagen Airport Copenhagen
11 Reviews and 665 Opinions A found this a great Hilton property to use with early flights out of Copenhagen. It is an easy...
Andersen Boutique Hotel Copenhagen
5 Reviews and 163 Opinions Good stay, the hotel has Superior, Budget, and Cheap rooms. Not far from Tivoli Gardens and Rail...
Savoy Hotel Copenhagen Copenhagen
4 Reviews and 67 Opinions Basic but very adequate accommodations in a convenient location about 4 blocks from the Radhus
see all Copenhagen member meetings