Home > Beer > Beer in Copenhagen: Smørrebrød and Mikkeller at Torvehallerne

Beer in Copenhagen: Smørrebrød and Mikkeller at Torvehallerne

At times Copenhagen can seem like a Guardian-reader’s utopia: all bikes, roughage, serious television drama and Scandanavian design.  Naturally, to complete the picture, it needs its own gastro-oriented food market to rival Borough Market or Mercado De San Miguel in Madrid.

Copenhagen’s version is Torvehallerne, which opened on a square near Nørreport railway station in September 2011. There’s an open area and two covered markets full of units selling a wide range of fresh fish, meat, cheese, vegetables and various prepared foods.

One Danish speciality we’d read about was smørrebrød: open sandwiches on rye bread.  On one stall in Torevehallerne (Hallernes) we sat at the bar and ordered some impressive-looking smørrebrød with a glass of Mikkeller beer.

It wasn’t clear which beer it was (“fadøl” just means draught beer) but I think it may have been Green Gold or, if not, a similar IPA.

In any event, it was a very nice beer and went especially well with the breaded fish, cured herring and even, at a stretch, the roast beef-topped smørrebrød.  It was particularly effective with the herring, which was delicious, but nonetheless it good to have a strong acidic beer to balance the taste and ultimately clear the palate.

Also at Torvehallerne on the weekend we visited, Carlsberg were giving away free four-packs of their new beer, Carlsberg Copen*hagen, a beer sold in a clear bottle apparently designed to be “gender-neutral” in its branding and marketing. The bottle I drank was a slightly skunked light pilsner with little to commend it over, say, Corona. In stark contrast to the Mikkeller and smørrebrød, it was far from the best Denmark had to offer.

  1. Student drinker
    May 15, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    I don’t understand why Carlsberg brewery make such bad beer when they have a history of creating great beer and the still have the knowledge and space to brew some different styles yet don’t.

    • May 15, 2012 at 2:13 pm

      I have a post coming up about the brewery, but I tried at least two good Carlsberg/Jacobsen beers whilst I was in Copenhagen. Their Carls Porter (a 7.8% “Baltic Porter”) was surprisingly good! Shame they don’t get sent over here.

      • Student drinker
        May 15, 2012 at 2:16 pm

        Ah fair enough, I have wondered if that was the case. Shame really as it would certainly build up their profile from what their known as at this time in the UK.

      • May 15, 2012 at 2:17 pm

        Well exactly. It’s not as if they’ve taken Tetleys and done amazing things with it.

      • Student drinker
        May 15, 2012 at 2:20 pm

        Although on the flip side, noticing the percentage on that beer you tryed and with the tax they would be facing maybe it’s our tax rates that’s stopping some of the big brewers like Carlsberg from investing better beer in the UK.

  2. Matt
    May 23, 2012 at 7:55 am

    I also tried received a free four pack of that beer from Torvehallerne. I happened to look at the “best by” date on the back, which I think was about one month away. My guess is that they were giving it away because no one was buying it. I also noticed that it is brewed by Carlsberg in Lithuania, not in Denmark.

  3. May 31, 2012 at 5:57 pm

    I was at torvhallerene last weekend, and the Mikkeller they had on tap there then was The American Dream (i had to ask), so it might have been that one you got as well?

    • May 31, 2012 at 6:25 pm

      Ah, that’s a possibility! I have had the American Dream before but only in bottles, so that might be why I didn’t recognise it.

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