I can count on one hand how much I know about Nordic culture:
- 1. Alexander Skarsgard
- 2. IKEA
- 3. Gravlax
And that’s it. That’s really it. So when Aaron suggests lunch at Edition Coffee Roasters, where “Nordic and Japanese aesthetics meet“, I really didn’t know what to expect. An image of a Japanese Viking popped into my head, and beyond giving me the giggles, gave me no other clue as to what I was going to be in for.
So we follow Google Maps down Liverpool St, pass avant garde furniture shops (are they called lifestyle design, now?) and straight into…well, a MUJI catalogue. I kid you not – a small sun-drenched cafe filled with white tiles and light wood. Very Swedish, and very MUJI. Welcome to Edition Coffee Roasters.
We pour over the very short menu and make our decisions as I am thoroughly distracted by the beautifully carved wooden handles of the cutlery. Can I pop a couple into my handbag without them noticing? Surely they won’t notice if a couple forks go missing?
Thankfully the food arrived before I talked myself into a life of crime, and the cutlery in question was now to be used.
The Garden of Valhalla, $16, was a riot of colours and flavours, pairing an orange mayonnaise with cos lettuce, radish and boiled potatoes. The cherry on the cake was the coffee cured egg yolk, and provided a sticky saltiness that added a hint of richness that grounded an otherwise delicate dish.
On the more Japanese side of things, the Mushroom Pond, $12, provided a lusciously rich and aromatic take on the comfortingly chewy wheat noodles know as Udon. One of the more well-known Japanese noodles, udon is commonly used in noodle soups and stir-fries (yakiudon). Here, it’s infused with a mushroom sauce to a deliciously nutty brown, and the mushroom cream added a finishing touch, much like vanilla ice cream finishes a warm brownie beautifully.
Showcasing the Nordic influence was the Fisksoppa, $19. A delicate shard of pastry, balanced on the top of a creamy blue cod and burnt eschallot stew. It was flavourful, though quite a bit more subtle than the other dishes at the table.
Edition Coffee Roasters is certainly providing so much more than just coffee. It’s an experience: transporting you to a whole other world that’s serene and calm, and filled with expertly prepared and sophisticatedly executed food. Mind you, you are paying rather dearly for the privilege – the Mushroom Pond could’ve been finished in a couple bites if I wasn’t deliberately taking my time.
Go with friends. That way maybe you can finish their food too. ?