Brunch. A relatively simple concept – you would think. It’s a meal that technically falls between breakfast and lunch, but in reality can be eaten any time of the day up until about 5pm. It generally involves breakfasty-type foods (eggs, bacon, pancakes, coffee, juice…) and it usually takes place over a relaxing few hours on a lazy weekend.
Where I’m from it’s very normal to meet up with friends or family for brunch. Everyone’s busy and it’s sometimes easier to catch up in the morning than in the evening for dinner. For a lot of people it’s part of the weekly routine. There are too many nice cafes in Melbourne to choose from, and they are increasingly spread out over the whole city, so you don’t have to travel to the trendy areas to find a good spot.
The types of foods that cafes in Melbourne serve for brunch are very high quality, often using fancy ingredients and cooked by qualified chefs. It’s quite common for award winning chefs to opt out of the high-stress restaurant business and open a cafe. The coffee is pretty much always amazing – as it must be in one of the world’s premier coffee cities.
Here is the brunch menu of one of my favourite cafes in Melbourne, Auction Rooms:
I want to order literally everything on that menu! I mean look at this perfection:
This is what I want when I go out for brunch – a delicious, chef-cooked meal that is interesting, includes perfect poached eggs and comes as a whole, well-thoughtout dish.
Now I’m going to describe what brunch is like in Copenhagen.
The popular brunch places in the Danish capital (which likes to think of itself as being on the forefront of all things food) include Mad og Kaffe, Wulff + Konstali, Møller Kaffe og Køkken and Bang og Jensen to name a few. On the weekend there will almost always be queues of people waiting to get in and people post their meals all over Instagram. It’s totally baffling to me because what they have to offer is really not that great. And despite what I wrote above about what I want from a brunch cafe, I would also be satisfied by at least getting something I couldn’t be bothered making myself.
What you get in a Copenhagen brunch is either a buffet consisting of a mix of little skyr pots with granola, scrambled eggs, avocado on rye bread, croissants, bacon, give or take some other boring stuff. The other type of brunch is where you get a card with all the options and can tick off what you want to mix and match. Nothing on these menu cards is remotely interesting or difficult to make. This is what it looks like when you get it:
I could have made all of this myself, and I do several times a week.
All this is to say, I’ve given up on finding a really good brunch place in Copenhagen. Every time I reminisce about the amazing cafes in Melbourne someone will inevitably recommend I go to one of the popular Copenhagen cafes, but I am so over it. It’s just another of the things you can’t find here and to get excited about when travelling, whether it’s home to Australia, or to big cities like New York or London.
If you know of a place that is truly good in Copenhagen, let me know (but beware, I am a tough crowd)!