Djuret, Gamla Stan, Stockholm, Sweden ***** (updated)

Q: What is it? A: Vegetarians, beware! This place in the Old Town of Stockholm serves meat from one animal at the time. And they do it with flair and competence. Highly recommended.

Street view – not Google's.

Djuret from the outside. The alley, Lilla Nygatan 5, is located in the Old Town. For those on sightseeing: The walk from the Royal Castle is less than five minutes.

Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer didn't survive to tell the tale.

Picture proof: One of the best reindeer steaks I’ve ever had, (and honestly I have had a few).

Lean cuisine. Or something.

Gutsy strategy: At Djuret, there’s only one dessert per week on the menu. This week: A cloudberry tart with Italian meringue and vanilla ice cream.

Bad meat hooks or good coat hangers?

Reminders of the Djuret concept are found everywhere in the restaurant’s interior, for example this meat hook that doubles as a coat hanger.

It was a rather bold move: A meat-only restaurant
The concept: serve one animal at the time, where different meat paragraphs from the same animal are prepared in different ways. That’s it. Quite a few restaurants specialized in meat have opened during the two years that Djuret has been in business, but this establishment still stand out as special. And even better; they have improved.

Should you ever forget where you are…
The interior is all about meat. Meat hooks with scales used as coat hangers. Lamps created with meat grinders as their base. Tables covered with meat charts. Everywhere meat. The menu has three fixed items; deep-fried pork rinds, a pata negra cured for 42 months and a Spanish sausage. Apart from that you’re at the mercy of the kitchen and what’s on the menu at the moment, (vegetarians may call ahead and the restaurant will prepare something for you). So, the 10,000 Swedish Krona question is: Does it work? Will this concept fly?

The best reindeer ever…
It works. And it works well. I start out with the pata negra, (or the Jamon Iberico Gran Reserva 42 months as it’s more properly referred to on the menu). It’s hard to go wrong with that. But… then comes the steak from the reindeer’s rear (the top round) baked with green pepper gravy, broccoli, black currant jelly and potatoes… It’s one of the best prepared servings of meat I’ve tasted in a l-o-n-g time. And the potatoes, prepared according to a famous Stockholm restaurant, (google ‘Hasselbacken potatoes’ and you’ll get the idea!), are just as perfect. Note to self: Can’t remember when I last got this worked up about potatoes!

And they top it with…
When the cloudberry tart, enforcing the northerly vibe, arrives under a layer of Italian meringue I’m surrendering completely to the Djuret kitchen and concept. Also, with access to a massive wine cellar you can not go wrong. The cool and relaxed staff know their thing: Wines from the Rhône region were served during the reindeer weeks but the waiter recommended a Spanish Priorat wine, priced substantially lower than the Maison Tardieu-Laurent Hermitage Rouge that I was bracing myself for. ”It goes better with the green pepper gravy” was his simple motivation. And it did. It worked perfectly. Another plus: Djuret is a bistro, which in real terms means more sensible pricing, making the clientele less business boring. I welcomed Djuret with open arms two years ago and these guys still deserve those five stars. Solid stuff. Well done!

Opening hours Monday – Saturday:
5 pm 12 am (The kitchen closes at 10 pm)

Bakfickan Djuret
Lilla Nygatan 5
111 28 Gamla Stan
Stockholm
Sweden

+46-8-506 400 84

Reservations by phone from 12 pm.

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Themes winter 2012:
January the 2nd – January the 28th: Reindeer from the Funäsdalen area + Vosne-Romanée wines of Bourgogne.
January the 30th – February the 25th: Beef + Cabernet Sauvignon wines of Napa Valley.

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LATEST VISIT:
I have eaten deer, beef, lamb and pork while visiting Djuret, and the kitchen headed by Mikael Einarsson has been delivering. It’s kind of irony that you’ll find more photos of reindeer below, (I’ll go looking for more picture proof soon).

Swedish gold!

Tartar of top round of reindeer, well hidden underneath a layer of Kalix bleak roe and the raw egg from Sanda, cream of Borsjtj, salted cucumber, Smetana, dill and horseradish. Fresh and funky stuff.

The amazing reindeer (not the same as the image above).

In Swedish it’s called ‘reninnanlår’ – a top round steak of reindeer to die for (well, the reindeer did…). In this case it’s fried with juniper and lingonberries to 54 °C, served with Burgundy braised parsnip, parsnip cream, Brussel sprouts, smoked pork belly from Rocklunda Farm, and reindeer jus with caramelized butter. See the yellow cubes? Those are Swedish Västerbotten cheese. Brilliant move!

1 comment

  1. A lovely evening with three wonderful ladies was slightly flawed by salty food, which we detest, inattentive and most of all greedy staff and equally outspoken misogynist petit bourgeois clientele. I am talking about the restaurant ‘Djuret’ i.e. ‘The Animal’, in Stockholm. There is nothing animal about it. I have had better meat elsewhere. It is a tourist trap.

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