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  • Writer's pictureJay Murray

Copenhagen, Eat Your Hjerte Out!

More than once, people that matter decided that Noma, in Denmark's capital city, topped the list of the World's Best Restaurants, which, from our perspective, makes it the Best Restaurant in the Galaxy, and even the Best Restaurant in the Universe. That's pretty lofty praise for a chef who has to fake a slight accent just to prove his bona fides. So I asked myself, what do they have over there in Denmark that makes it so special, and the answer came to me immediately: ants, elderberries and wood (as seen above in the only sfw photo I took on my last visit). But here's the kicker - we have all those things here, too! I'll admit, I'm wary to forage for ants around these parts, since I'm pretty sure all my local specimens are saturated with Roundup, and I do my best to avoid Monsanto products. But I was able to forage for both wood and elderberries at a nearby beer and winemaking supply shop. I also picked up some pearl onions and radishes 'cause they seemed Nordic enough, and a few days ago we dehydrated and powdered some prepared horseradish, so... practically Noma. Noma 3.0 we could call it.

Moral of the story: when life hands you elderberries ($7.99 for 4 ounces, dried), make elderberry shrub. Okay, that's not much of a moral; it's more of an awkward segue, really, but that doesn't make it a bad idea.

Another day has passed since I began my Scandinavian journey, and I must confess, dinner, by my standards, was just so so; but all was not for naught: I did make the aforementioned elderberry shrub, and few subsequent elderberry and elderflower gintonics, (recipes here) and before long, my forgettable dinner was all but forgotten.

Speaking of elders, which we weren't really, but as you're already familiar with my awkward segues, here's a riddle: my younger is sometimes an elder, while my elder ferments for the rents.

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