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May 30, 2022

Dining in Gothenburg

As Sweden’s second city, you might expect Gothenburg (also known as Göteborg) to be a great place to dine, and indeed you’d be right. Gothenburg has everything from unique street food to fine dining, and options to suit every taste and budget in between. 

Let’s begin with those that may make the biggest dent in your purse and work down.

Fine Dining in Gothenburg

Gothenburg has 15 Michelin-starredLink opens in a new tab restaurants, ranging from BhogaLink opens in a new tab’s take on nouvelle cuisine, with delicious fresh produce and international flavors, to FamiljenLink opens in a new tab’s colorful interior, excellent cocktails and local seafood.  For the rest of the list, check out Michelin’s list hereLink opens in a new tab.

For cocktails and bar snacks with a view, Heaven23Link opens in a new tab is situated on the 23rd floor of the Gothia Tower building, so you’ll enjoy a glittering cityscape at night, or a panoramic spread during the daytime.

Trip Advisor’s top-rated restaurant in Gothenburg is CarbonLink opens in a new tab, whose tasting menu comes highly recommended.  Let the staff pair wines for you for maximum satisfaction and enjoy its chic but welcoming décor and creative take on a pan-European menu.

Swedish Cuisine

Swedish specialties are about more than meatballs.  Since Gothenburg is situated on the west coast where the Göta älv river meets the north Atlantic, seafood features prominently, especially langoustine, shrimp, oysters, and mussels.  Gothenburg boasts the country’s largest fish and shellfish market, so it’s fitting that fruit de mer will feature highly on any restaurant’s menu.

One of the best places to enjoy local seafood in Gothenburg is SjömagasinetLink opens in a new tab, which offers a beautiful dining experience in an 18th century waterfront warehouse once owned by the East India Company.  Owner Ulf Wagner and his head chef Gustav Trägårdh are both award-winning experts at providing a relaxing environment and unique twists on traditional offerings including truffle hake with red wine sauce or lobster bisque.

When you’re exploring the historic Haga district, drop in to SjobarenLink opens in a new tab for its homely charm, smoked salmon, or creamy cod.  They have a second location in Lorensberg too.

For mussels, a day trip to the northern village of Ljungskile, which specializes in shellfish, is well worth it.  Visit Klocktornets MusselbarenLink opens in a new tab and you can even take a trip to an organic mussel farm, harvest your own protein and have it cooked over an open fire.

Vegetarian and Vegan Eats

Sweden has a huge meat-free food movement, with over 1.2 million Swedes identifying as vegetarians in 2020.  This translates to a lot of choices for plant-based cuisine.

BlackbirdLink opens in a new tab on Stigbergsliden is a must-visit for any Vegan.  Its hipster bar feel is accompanied by truly excellent food including tasty tofu, chimichanga and dan dan noodles with soy mince.  They produce a range of mock chicken and fish dishes to challenge your non-vegan friends.  It’s a great place to try local craft beers too.

In Majorna, Crippas offers a cozy vegan café feel with great coffee and regular live music or stand-up comedy nights.

For a Jewish take on vegetarian fast food, Sunset FalafelkungenLink opens in a new tab scores highly.  Its bright yellow wooden booth serves falafel wraps, vegan burgers and tahini and is situated near the Rohsska Museum of Design and Applied Arts.  There’s a sit-in restaurant too, further up Stigbergstorget.

Bar Food

Although drinking in Sweden can be expensive, there are some excellently atmospheric places to enjoy a beer or glass of wine with bar food.

The Steampunk BarLink opens in a new tab is a unique Victorian sci-fi themed venue with a large choice of craft ales, cured meat platters, whitefish roe and gambas, a hot and spicy dish of shrimp and mussels.

To sample a range of the local aquavitsLink opens in a new tab (schnapps), Gothenburg’s spirit specialty, visit The BarnLink opens in a new tab, whose traditional wooden interior and varied menu will persuade you to linger.

Meals on Wheels

There are droves of food trucks in Gothenburg, offering every cuisine you can think of.  Sometimes just letting your nose lead you can be the best strategy.  You’ll tend to find the biggest cluster in the city center, where they can count on the highest footfall.

JinxLink opens in a new tab is one of the most popular, offering “bastardized Asian street food” (their own words).  Find bao buns, confit duck and fried chicken sandwiches at the sign of the winking panda.

For spicy Mexican fare, including fish tacos (for the best of two cultures) try Mi Taquito or seek out the prosaically named Two Buns and Meat for mouthwatering burgers. 

Whatever you’re in the mood for, Gothenburg can supply; it’s one of Sweden’s most gourmet-friendly destinations.

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