Our reservation was for 18:30. We were warmly invited to the lounge room where the waiter took our drinks order. For our choice of champagne he curiously asked about our preferences in terms of acidity, fullness and minerality. We decided upon Pascal Doquet 1er Cru Blanc de Blanc Extra Brut. It’s body was more delicate and less full than the champagne we had for our lunch. The Pascal Doquet was really nice, and I was very fond of its mineral style.
The nibbles arrived and were comprised by lump fish roes with a cauliflower puree, fresh radishes from the inn’s own garden to dip in the smoked cheese cream, fried somethings with an aioli, and finally some of the same tasty tartar which we had enjoyed at lunch. All amuses were sharp and very delicious and raised my expectations towards the dinner.
We had a quick glance at the a la carte menu, but of course decided to go for the tasting menu and additionally ordered the lobster dish from the short list of the a la carte dishes. I highly considered the wine menu but couldn’t refrain the idea of enjoying a lovely white Burgundy. Furthermore, sticking with only one type of wine would help me put more focus on the food.
2006 Domaine Lefllaive, Puligny Montrachet 1er Cru, Les Folatieres
I chose the ’06 Les Folatières from Leflaive. What a lot of pleasure it brought me. Full-bodied, delighting and with everything which makes for a wonderful Puligny-Montrachet.
Then the staff escorted us to the dining room where they kindly gave us a table with a view to the big kitchen.
Shrimp from Rømø Island
As we had already tried the oyster amuse bouche, Allan Poulsen had prepared an excellent shrimp course with white asparagus and browned butter instead. It was so beautiful and very delicious but could not live up to the overwhelming surprise which the oyster dish had been. Fair enough, though!
A wonderful, terroir-style and organic H. Billot Fils champagne from Ambonnay accompanied the shrimp.
Salted scallops and apple cress - celeriac
The first course of salted scallops was extremely well-balanced. I expected that this was a shellfish course with some garnish, but in fact it was so much more than that. The scallops were completely and very harmoniously integrated with the dish and added flavour on same level as any of the other ingredients. The dish as such was very creative and really delicious. Normally, I would think the apple cress seeds would be too dominating, however, they worked perfectly in this picture.
Cod and potato salad, peas - pickle brine
Cod followed with new potatoes, peas and dill. Again I experienced that the fish wasn’t playing the leading role. All the ingredients suited each other and formed the perfect and delicious taste. Sweet peas, aromatic dill, subtle potatoes and juicy cod. It was like a choir of singers where each voice serves a purpose in making the perfect harmony.
Then the lobster course was served. The taste was pure but at the same time very intense and had a slight sweet tone to it. The lobster was cooked to absolute perfection.
Summer cabbage potatoes - “Grube Svendbo” and wild herbs
Next up was a vegetarian course of summer cabbage, potatoes and a Danish cheese Grube Svendbo. The grated cheese resembled Parmesan in taste. Really good.
Chicken farm – Egg yolk, herbs and bread crumbs
Parsley chicken, asparagus and alliaria
The main course came in two flights on the theme of a chicken farm. First serving represented the idea of all the food items the chicken eats – corn, flowers, egg yolk (!). The second serving offered a chicken breast resembling a terrine. It came with herbs, onions and a very rich sauce based on chicken stock. It was a rich course full of taste, but at the same time is was not too heavy. After all I had already eaten quite a lot and also wanted to save some appetite for the subsequent dishes and I therefore appreciated the lightness of this main course.
2006 Château Lafleur Gazin, Pomerol
Reading about the wine-parings I was curious about how this Pomerol would accompany the chicken so I decided to order a glass. It did a great job. It was fruity but not overwhelming and thus went well with the chicken. I liked the restrained, dry finish e.
Frisergården cheese of sheep milk and cow milk, pear and elderflower
First time ever I was served a cooked cheese dish was at Pierre Gagnaire in Paris. I liked it because it sort of stressed the essence and the pure taste of the cheese. Now, I believe it’s the first time I’ve been served a cooked cheese dish in Denmark. The pear was a little too warm to my taste, but after it had cooled down a bit it was wonderfully adding sweetness to the dish and fulfilled it with the cheese and the elderflower. Excellent.
After a small brake we continued with the desserts.
Frozen white chocolate and dill, yogurt, browned butter ice cream and celeriac
The first one of frozen white chocolate formed as a cannelloni and with dill and celeriac was smashing. It contained everything in terms of sweetness and freshness and despite the vegetable and the herb the impression was that of a true dessert – not a sweet vegetables course. It was perfection and really excellent. To die for, actually.
2005 Chateau Richard, Coup de Coeur, Saussignac
I asked for sweet wines to accompany the desserts and the first was very good biodynamic Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc full of honey-sweetness and a great freshness and balancing acidity in the finish. A nice match for the white chocolate and dill dessert.
Danish strawberries, elderflower, rose-hip and cream
The second dessert was a two-in-one. The plate came with a cover. In the plate there were fresh strawberries and cream poured at the bottom – a variation of a traditional Danish summer dessert. Very delicious.
Strawberries with cream and bacon
In the cover was a thick pink cream with taste of strawberries. We sprinkled the little bag’s content over it and it gave some crispiness to it. The flavour was very nice – the bacon a little bit too dominating perhaps.
FRV Terres Dorées, Jean-Paul Brun, Beaujolais
This very fresh and sparkling red accompanied the strawberries nicely.
The evening ended where we started – in the lounge. I felt almost sad the the dinner var almost over. It had been such a lovely experience and I didn’t really want it to end.
Next morning we stuffed ourselves at the beautiful breakfast table with the view the the garden outside. I wouldn’t make the same mistake as at Schloss Berg when we just took off without having breakfast (- big mistake!). I had uninhibitedly opted for almost all the side dishes paranoid of missing something extraordinary.
Yogurt and müsli
Fresh fruit ready to eat
Charcuterie and cheese
Bread fresh and warm from the oven
Home made marmalade
Øllebrød – rye bread porridge
Boiled, runny egg
Vegetables with smoked cheese cream
When arriving at Henne Kirkeby Kro you get a card listing everything the kitchen provide for breakfast. Your job is to select and mark lady’s’ choice in the left column and that of monsieur’s in the right and then hand it back before you initiate your dinner. As I was quite hungry at that time, I couldn’t help myself not choosing everything that sounded tempting – and many dishes really did. I guess we ordered 3 or 4 different items each and marked it in each column. The next morning the kitchen, however, didn’t consider who ordered what but served in the order from top to bottom of the list which meant that we wasn’t eating at the same time basically. I just took note of this because everything else throughout the visit was working perfectly.
Anyways, visiting Henne Kirkeby Kro for me was a divine experience. For the 24 hours I was there, I felt transported out of this world, out of time, to a paradisaical place. The whole experience lived with me for days and because of the magnitude of it, it was like I had been away for a week.
What made Henne Kirkeby Kro so special was the intensity of the food’s taste. Somehow the dishes didn’t appear too complex to me, even tough some of them actually were.
The quality of the produce was over the top, every single ingredient was like the best I had ever tried and was in a way the ideal in taste for each produce. Each ingredient served a specific purpose and added to the completeness of the dish.
Everything about the visit was top quality: Friendly and impeccable service, lovely and luxurious room, absolutely wonderful food, warm atmosphere. Henne Kirkeby Kro is definitely worth the trip and I cannot wait to get back there!
Thank you Allan & to your great team!