At Colourful Paul’s


A little appetizer

Copenhagen is great when it comes to eating out. Well, that said by a Dane, of course. What I mean is, although I dine out very often, there are still great places that I haven’t been too, yet, and where I want to go. Copenhagen has such variety someone once said. It’s true.

The Entrance to Paul’s

With so many temptations why did I pick The Paul, run by Paul Cunningham, for this lunch then, you might ask. Good question! Well. First of all, not many fancy restaurant are open for lunch on Saturdays, so that eliminated quite a few (and indeed my favourite one). Second, I had dinner at Paul’s a year ago and liked it a lot, but it wasn’t the dinner of my life. And I guess that was what I expected. So, I would like to see what Paul could bring this time, 13 months later.


For my birthday I had got “Madjournal” by Paul Cunningham with delicious and easy to make food with a fun and loving greeting from him with a little now dry purple flower, the devil’s horns drawn on the picture of his head and a note saying ‘your parents rock’. Paul is very creative.

The atmosphere at The Paul is very special and very unique. So, in that sense the name of the restaurant is perfect. It’s like stepping into Paul’s own house, his living room. Even when he is not at ‘the office’, you sense his appearance everywhere. This place is the most personal fancy restaurant I have ever been too. I love that about it. The loo is pretty and nicely decorated in a feminine way with flowers and very old photographs on the wall of, I don’t know naturally but with this place in mind, I would say old family pictures. Toothbrushes. A bright idea.

Kir & Kir Royal

We began with a snack and a drink in the lounge. My friend wanted kir. I fancy neither kir nor kir royal and asked for Champagne. But the waiter misunderstood and thought I wanted the royal thing. Like my white skirt that day was royal in the sense that there’s a picture on it of HRH Queen Magrethe II at her new year’s speech one or two decades ago. Kir and kir royal is a bit too sweet as pre-dinner for me, but this kir royal was actually nice, maybe because of the early time of the day.

Crayfish and Tomatoes

Crayfish ‘pil-pil’ olive oil, garlic & mild chilli – texture of tomato

Our first course, I loved the tomatoes. It’s very rare to get a dish in fine dining that focuses on tomatoes. Red tomato. Green tomato. Yellow tomato. Finely sliced as thin as truffle flakes. The piece on the edge of the plate turned on images in my head of an intense pasta sauce, which had been simmering for hours, sweet and delight because of the volatile-ness of it. The very delicate consommé was poured into the plate, and at first glance it looked like vinegar. The drops separated in the oily liquid already in the plate. The course comprised crayfish as well, but the tomatoes out done the taste of them.

Pork cheeks confit

Confit of pork cheek, vanilla seed – green apple & cocos blancs

Why is the meat closest to the bone always the best? This pork confit was tender and had a lovely gentle taste. The colour of the meat was dark rosa. The greaves, not exactly crispy like they never are, were so good with the pork contributing salt. On the top was a slice of green apple and vanilla foam. I perfectly understood the purpose of these – sour and sweetness, but somehow it was like this dish wasn’t complete. Too much vanilla? But less might diminutive to the point where I wouldn’t notice it, so I don’t think that was it. Wondering now, it could be the fact that the apple was raw, too much acidity to connect with the other ingredients. Perhaps the apple should have been cooked in some way. I’m still not sure, this dish puzzles me.

The Turbot

West coast turbot, roasted à la provençale. Artichoke, olive, tomato – herbes fines

A wonderful and intense sauce a bit more liquid in texture compared to what I usually get at nice restaurants. The grilled artichokes. Wow. I liked the firmness of the potato spiced up with saffron amongst others. To my taste though it wasn’t cooked enough. The fish was good too, fresh and firm and delicate in taste.

The Cheese

A little plate of cheese

I really couldn’t settle at this point, so I was very happy that my friend would like to share a plate of cheese (I wasn’t really hungry anymore at that point) and that the waiter would let us do that. Imagine me eating all the cheese on that plate, huh? Seven various ones mainly from France, brie, goat, Camenbert (a favourite), Parmesan, cheese with ashes and accompanied with a compote of onion and something else that I have forgot.


The wine menu didn’t attract me very much (my ignorance), and as most courses were light, to some extend, I believed a white burgundy could accompany the dishes and make my nose and palate happy. I have become very fond of Chardonnay from this part of the world. The 2002 Château-Fuissé Pouilly-Fuissé village was nice with character of minerals and rocks, creamy with restrained fruit, quite acidic. Some of the acidity disappeared with time, but not all. I prefer white Burgundy with less acidity than this one. The nose however was great with smoke, minerals and I really enjoyed sniffing it.

Melon charentais and sherry sorbetto

Melon charentais. Sorbetto of P.X. sherry. Wall St.Financier.

Melon Granité

This dessert was nothing like I’ve had before. The sherry sorbetto was magnificent and very good with the tiny chocolate dots swimming around the melon soup. At the top and sprinkled about was baking powder noisily popping like it was a pot of boiling water, tickling and creating fireworks inside my mouth. I love this feeling, which also provides a new dimension to the sense perception. The thing that made the dish brilliant was the mint leaves.

A word on my thing about serviettes, I went to powder my nose a couple of times and each time my chair was pulled out for me and I found my serviette nicely folded on the table. You see that makes sense. I have a habit of throwing it on my seat. My serviette wasn’t changed during my meal and that was perfectly fine with me.

Candy Explanation


The petit fours were fantastic: Chocolate fondant, meringue burgers with toffee, corns filled with ice cream and role model delectable raspberries, nougatines, all were great and providing the kick of sweetness that the dessert hadn’t given me. A final perfect warm and strong espresso indicated, sadly, time to go.

The view from my chair

The light of that place is really something and with the colours it’s bringing a warm and cosy and very friendly sentiment over the place. I didn’t want to leave. I felt like ‘hey, put on some quiet jazz music or a Puccini opera and please pull of my boots so I can stretch my legs on the sofa and hang out here for a while.’


To be perfectly honest, and I think I should, I very much enjoyed this lunch, but I had expected a bit more from Paul and his team, food wise. Have absolutely nothing to be unhappy with as to their service. The appetizer of pink raw scrimps, white baby scallops, red beetroot, orange carrot, white cabbage and green brownwort, I believe it was, was fantastic and a surprising highlight like the dessert. The tomato and crayfish, and the pork were not sharp enough.

Especially one of the waiters was very kind to us. When we were about to leave, he showed us round the restaurant and explained about Paul’s creativity, colourful scrape books, and the story behind the three huge paintings on the wall by Maria Dubin.
I took a last look at the giant and fascinating Helmut Newton’s photo book ‘Sumo’ and then stepped out in the Tivoli Gardens heading for a last ride in the daemon roller-coaster, where I sort of regretted wearing a skirt.

Thanks, Paul

for the kind note in my book (lovely potato recipe with olive oil and blue cheese) and an enjoyable lunch!

1 September 2007

15 Responses to “At Colourful Paul’s”

  • Heh, well, one has to get one self around, don’t one?;-)

    And I know you’re talking details (that’s what I like about your posts), it’s just in places like these, it really is the details or that certain “I-don’t-know-what-it-is-but-it’s-something” thing that finishes it all off, making it all that AND a bag of chips. I’ve sure had those experiences as well – you can’t really pin point it, but it’s just… You expected more. Maybe we’re just spoiled rotten? 😉

  • So it’s mostly days off, half working days or every now and then a business lunch. I thought maybe you were a sales person or “just some high profile” person that everyone wanted to invite to lunch/dinner 😉

    I work at SBS TV as head of program planning. If you’re interested in knowing a bit more it’s here: Maybe you have a profile on LinkedIn yourself?

  • I don’t mind you asking, Allan, I figured the question would pop sooner or later. 😉 I work at a software company. It really is very simple, I just take a day’s holiday or split one day in two. A few lunches are also business related.

    What do you do? Is it not possible to take a day off once in a while?

    Perhaps, I should make a list of restaurants open for lunch during weekends and one for weekdays. Hmm. 😀

    Hi Yin

    Many thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences with The Paul. I really appreciate it.a I agree, certainly plan to return too. And I still speculate a bit why the food didn’t exactly get me out there where I can’t swim – so to speak ;-).

  • Trine, if you don’t mind my asking – what do you do since you’re able to get to all these lunches? I’d love to go to lunches, but they don’t really fit in with work – and as you mentioned the restaurants are often closed on weekends for lunch.

  • Lovely photos as always Trine. 🙂

    On a recent visit in June with a large group of friends, the service we received that night was absolutely stupendous in terms of knowledge, fluency and attention to detail. Very very impressive.

    Food wise though – although still good overall, was less polished than on a previous visit in Dec 2006, which was a shame.

    We did speculate whether this was a change in season, or the absence of Paul C himself that night, or just simply that the ideas on the plate were less well executed.

    Still – was a very enjoyable night and a restaurant I would consider returning to …

  • Hehe. Thanks, A soft spot? So, Californian Cabernet not necessarily be your favourite wine then? (I know it’s not easy to mark out one…)
    Well Dennis, now you just have to tell me about your picture, your logo at The Muppet Show, am I right? (Sorry my questions, I’m not sophisticated like you in my choice of profile name and logo 😉 ).

    You’re very lucky to be having dinner at Geranium soon. Please let me know where to read about it, if you find the time to put down some notes. I’m going too, in two weeks, but it’s “only” a lunch appointment.


  • “Why Opusone?”

    I’m not quite sure – maybe because I had (still have) a sore spot for California Cabernet’s when I first started learning about wine and travled a bit in Napa and Sonoma Valley. I’m sure you know this, but it’s also the name of a “cult-wine” from Napa Valley – a joint venture between the Mouton Rotschild and the Robert Mondavi families. I have tried a couple of vintages and actually I think it’s rather commercial and one-dimensional in style – but the name sort of stuck to me as an alias I use in wine related matters.

    Aren’t you glad that that was the short version? 😉

    Looking forward to read about your next gourmet endevours,

    P.S. I’m having dinner at Geranium in two weeks – really excited – hope to get some time to write about it.

  • Zarah, you do seem to get your way around the fancy places of CPH? So happy to hear that 🙂

    Yeah, lunch is good for a number of reasons:
    – it’s cheaper
    – you eat less (probably most targeting the girls)
    – drink less (the health)
    – are able to digest it before bedtime

    All reasons that justify frequent visits 😉

    Not up to snuff. I’d like to stress that we, well I, really talk details here.

  • You know what? I go out for lunch way too little. I mean, yes, the occasional café and stuff, but not like this. It’s such a great idea! I think I’ll have to take it up!

    I’m sorry to hear they weren’t quite up to snuff, though – the times I’ve gone (in the evening), everything has been amazing. And I know just what you’re saying with the “is it okay if I just kick of my shoes and lounge on the couch for a couple of hours here?” They sure know how to make you feel relaxed and at home.

  • Dear Allan
    Many thanks. I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting Paul. Unfortunately. It’s only my parents who know him.

    And yes, eating lunch is this summer’s secret to stunning food pictures. 😉

    Dear LyricalDennis
    Fantastic 😀 Please, would love to hear more from you. Sometimes work (although I love my job) always gets in the way…
    By the way, why Opusone? Maybe you’ve already stated that at

    cheers guys

  • Great pictures Trine and a nice description of your lunch at The Paul. I guess I should go out at lunch more often – at least to get the better pictures!

    Do you know Paul Cunningham in person or is it “just” a matter of a signed cook book? I’ve always liked his way and his personality (for what I know he’s a fun person).

  • He he.. yes I’m the “lyric tasting note” guy that goes by the alias Opusone at 🙂

    I frequently read your blog but rarely have time to comment but will try to pick up the pace and do some more posting again – work just somehow seems to have gotten the better of my time off 😉

    See you around,

  • Good morning Dennis

    Thanks very much for your kind words. Apologise if this sounds or is inappropriate, but I have to ask. Are you the “Russian military tank”-Dennis? 😉

    Hope to see you more around here.


  • Great report and wonderfully crisp and bright photos of the food. Always a pleasure to read your food blog !


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