The Triumph of Geranium


Two weeks before Rasmus Kofoed won gold at Bocuse d’Or 2011 I visited his and Søren Ledet’s restaurant Geranium in the new location at the top of the H-tower of Parken – Denmark’s national stadium.

The dining room is absolutely stylish, cool and beautiful. It’s dominated by dark colours, anthracite marble, ceramics, silver and steel. It’s a completely different look compared to the romantic setting of the old place. Geranium has become an internationally styled, world class restaurant with it’s own elevator to lift you up to the 8th floor. All the luxury reminded me of Per Se in NYC. It was utmost delicious to sit in the lounge part of the restaurant, eat the nibbles and gaze at the tables, the semi-open kitchen separated from the dining room by a glass wall and the giant bar where the waiters prepare wine and stuff. Taking in the setting. Anticipating.


A wonderful 1996 Beaufort, Millésime, Brut Nature, Polisy, Champagne

Charles Eames’ Organic Chair

Carrot and sea-buckthorn

Beatrout and cottage cheese

Crispy pork ear, vinegar and spinach

Cheese sticks with…

Ramson onion and parsley shoots dip

Crab, fish roes and verbena

Celeriac, sweetbread and truffle

As I like to celebrate Rasmus’ fantastic achievement of winning gold Bocuse d’Or 2011, now that we are still sensing the moment of success here in Denmark, I’ve decided not to spend weeks writing a long post, but instead showing you images of the  22 stunning servings and just comment on my overall impression.

Where the decor of Geranium has changed quite a bit, the style of the food still reflect delight, beauty and refinement. But the food also presented a touch of something more complex and feminine, I feel.
Rasmus interest in vegetables is evident: Five courses were vegetarian.

We drank a few whites by the glass and complemented with some bottles of our own.

Cold tomato juice, ham, sour and wild flowers

Oyster, cauliflower and smoked cheese

Small scallops, horseradish, chervil stems and cucumber

2009 Martin Arndorfer – von den Terrassen “1958”, Kamptal, Austria

Celery and celeriac

Sav – Fermented birch juice

Chicken wing, langoustine, juniper and buttermilk

1999 Valette, Clos de Monsieur Noly, Pouilly-Fuisse, Macon - fantastic

Bread – the only bread we were offered the whole night

Grain two ways

Fleur de l’Europe, Fleury, Champagne - very nice

Lightly smoked potatoes, dried peas and lovage

Monkfish with element of the sea and the beach

A gorgeous 2004 Domaine d’Auvernay, Meursault, Bourgogne. Love and loved it. (Our own bottle).

Herbs’ garden

Wild and pickled mushrooms with chestnuts

Our own bottle, again;)

Pork jaw, raw crispy and cooked Jerusalem artichokes

Danish “Blå kornblomst” blue cheese with pickled hip rose and hip rose vinegar. Beautiful!

Biodynamic apples foam



Cheep milk’s yogurt and the scent of pine needles

Elderflower beer and pickled elderflower, herbs and taste of licorice

Wood sorrel and woodruff

Pumpkin, cloudberries and stems of lemon balm

2006 Möbitz Gewürstraminer Berrenauslese, Baden

Petit four

Each dish was perfectly seasoned and balanced, and the meal as a whole was masterly composed. Charming and sweet service. Truly perfection. I’m so happy that Geranium is back!

Congrats with the triumph!

Thank you, everyone!

25 Responses to “The Triumph of Geranium”


  • Hi Trine,

    Thank you for the explanation. I thought this can’t really be common :)
    It would be nice though, as in some places wines are extremelly expensive.
    Looking forward to gastronomical week in September :)
    If I have any questions, I’ll surely ask :)

    Tanja

  • Hi Clytie

    Thank you, I am happy to help :-). Regarding bringing your own wine to high-end restaurants is not common. This evening at Geranium was a special occasion.
    Let me know if there’s anything else I can help with.

    Trine

  • Hi Trine,

    I am so happy I found your site. Since I am a foodie and will visit Copenhagen in September I started to check out places to go “more seriously” yesterday and found your gorgeous page.
    I have a question regarding your post about Geranium. I noticed you also mentioned “your wine”. Did you actually bring the wine with you to the restaurant?? If yes, is that percieved as normal in more “high-end” places like Geranium?

  • Hi Jean-Philippe
    Thanks so much for your comment and feedback. I very much appreciate it.
    By chance I went to Geranium about a week ago. I loved the food, the lightness, the elegance, the beauty and the tastes. But tastes are different, so when you come back we’ll just need to find some place else for you. :)

  • Just back from Copenhagen where I had a dinner at Geranium. Maybe my expectations were too high, but I experienced mixed feelings about this kind of food and menu.
    Before getting to the point, just a few words about the place: very elegant and modern decoration. The service was a bit formal with no smiles from the girls serving us, reciting the composition of the dishes with no passion neither complementary informations. At the opposite, Michael, the sommelier, was fantastic, friendly and passionate.
    About the food now : the Total menu which is the grand tasting menu looks almost and mostly as a vegetarian menu. Very surprising, particularly for a Bocuse d’Or winner.
    And after a while, enough is enough. Real food you can chew is awaited. On 18 dishes, we had: small slices of mackerel, one small (compared to the one you get at Noma) langoustine and a chicken wing transformed in a meat ball (what a non-sense !).
    All the others are based on vegetables: tomato (quite interesting by the way), onion, asparagus (this one was great), peas, herb’s garden… Moreover, a straight line is frequently missing in the dishes : the main vegetable is drown under other vegetables and herbs, not to mention the numerous foams, resulting in an unclear flavor message. At last, the construction of the menu doesn’t appear clearly and the sequence of dishes doesn’t follow a real progression.
    I talked with Rasmus at the end of the dinner. He’s a friendly guy and the discussion we had was very interesting. He fully assumes this orientation of the menu: he grew up into a vegetarian cooking, he loves vegetables and thinks they are the appropriate products at this season. Fair enough.
    But I’m not sure I will go back to Geranium.

  • Yes, lucky us that we had enough euros with us (even though it wasn’t our fault that the card-reading thing didn’t work)… :-) Another strange thing: after paying and asking for a copy of the menu the young and very friendly fella went to get it, and never returned…

    FYI: The maitre/sommelier was some guy with tattooed arms (I suppose he was, since he poured our first sip of wine and presented the wine pairings at almost all other tables).

    But as I said: the staff as a whole was extremely friendly and the food was so good that those, well, “irritations” didn’t really matter.

  • Thanks a lot for your feedback, KM! You’re right, it doesn’t look like the Universe is an option anymore. I wonder who the maitre was. What luck you were able to pay cash.

  • The “universe” menu you had isn’t offered on a regular basis, is it? We had only the choice between the 2 regular menus…

    Anyway: the “our menu” was very good – with 2-3 outstanding, unforgettable dishes. And the restaurant itself is amazing: the view, the relaxed atmosphere – just great! Service by the young and cheerful staff was very friendly and quite good – even though there were some lapses. Worst was the snobby maitre (and sommelier?) who didn’t even bother to refill our empty glasses, even though he passed by our table several times. I finally took the bottle out of the cooler myself – not once, but for the rest of the evening. I suspect our wine was too “cheap” for his precious fingers. But whatever the reason: In a restaurant that aims for 2* that is big no-no… my advice would be: get a new maitre.
    Then the credit card machine didn’t work and after long winded tries we had to pay cash in euro (I wonder what they would’ve done, if we hadn’t any cash on us). In a case like that the offer for a glass of something should be the least – but no, nothing…
    Nevertheless it was a great evening at Geranium. I would go back any time.

  • Part of me agrees with you. It is elegant and in an international way but the warmth and the kindness of the staff makes it pleasant to be there. The advantage with booking Geranium is that you can try to get a table each day the are open 90 days out ;-) The new day starts at midnight DK time.

    Thanks for your comment.

  • The food looks really good! Thanks for the great pictures! But I have to say: I have been to the “old” Geranium and judging from the pictures I liked the old place way way better. It was far mor personal and “warm”. The new setting -as I said: judging from the pics- looks extremely formal, not to say stiff. The design looks expensive but exchangeable, this could be a restaurant in new york or tokoy as well.
    Regarding reservations: Judging from their online booking system (and the mails I exchanged with them) it seem virtually impossible to get a table these months… and they don’t even have michelin-star… amazing.

  • Hi M.
    Thanks for your kind comment. Geranium has online reservation and accept 90 days’ advance booking. Weekends are a bit tough (we went on a weekday) but it’s not as hard as noma ;-)

    Kind regards
    Trine

  • Hi Trine,

    Wonderful post – it looks amazing! Was is difficult getting af table?

    Kind regards,

    M. Engelbrecht

  • Thanks for sharing this post/the meal. Food looks incredible. I hope to be there either working in the kitchen or eating one day.

    You are such a lucky person !!! Write more, please :)

  • Chuck, Yes I think I know what you mean. I think the meal wants to be harmonious above all. And that’s what I felt it was. But I disagree about Spain. To me the look of the food is common with the trends here, but in its own way. Rasmus’ way.

    Michael, The fir 6 servings we the snacks we were served in the lounge. The menu itself was composed by 16 servings, all bigger than the snacks. This was the Universe menu and it has 6 courses more than the standard menu.

    Kathrine, Thank you :D and yes it was Vor Univers.

    Matt, very nice post! Really like the personal take on it and the aspects of your experience.

    Jean-Philippe – thank you so much and also for your support of DK.

    Thomas, hehe. Glad to see your second visit paid off. Well-defined is a good way of describing the food I think.

    en Foodie, Thank you!

    Dear Yin, thanks to you and yes, it is in fact. Uplifting :-) (will write soon).

    Thanks everyone!
    Trine

  • ah – isn’t it remarkable how the setting of the restaurant can make such difference to the overall experience? thank you for sharing Trine – and good to know that these talented chefs have found another outlet for their creative energy.

    hope you’re well :)

  • This looks amazing! I hope I will get at chance to visit Geranium soon.

    Congratulations to Denmark and Rasmus for the Gold medal.

  • Hi Trine,

    I knew you would like it. Wonderful post.

    I have tried it twice now. First time, was on their second opening day. It wasn’t good. I am sorry to say there were so many errors – especially the service. Hadn’t it been for our very skilled female waiter, Laura – it would have been pure disaster.

    I was too much of a diplomat to say anything, as I really wished the guys to succeed and knew what they are capable of. But I still I can’t understand why you open a restaurant if you are not ready. You have to respect that people still pay a lot of money for a dinner.

    However – I returned in December as I hoped all the small error would have been adjusted. Complete transformation. That dinner in December blew my mind. The food was almost weightless and so well defined. Utterly adorable.

    Take care,
    /Thomas

  • As always, wonderful pictures ! After my short stay in København last december and my moving culinary experiences, I’m really glad that a danish chef won the Bocuse d’or.

    I can’t wait to taste Rasmus Kofoed’s cuisine !

    Best regards,
    Jean-Philippe

  • Looks like you got the Universe :)

    I’ve barely started writing, but check out my Geranium post!

    Matt
    food.mattandgizelle.com

  • Beautiful pictures, Trine.
    Is it the “Vor Univers” menu?

    I hope I get a chance to pay Geranium a visit later this year!

    - Kathrine

  • Trine,
    This is an interesting report, as usual. Would a typical diner ordering the tasting menu get so many courses and would they be so small?
    I hope we can return to Copenhagen this year.
    Michael

  • You ate the meal – so i’ll trust you – but the food *looks* like it isn’t sure what it wants to be at times. Glad to see the smoked potato / peas dish still there, as well as the majestic Herb garden (where’s the king?!?!), but a lot of the food looks more & more like Spain w/ Danish ingredients – and looks like it’s veering towards the aspects i disliked most on my old Geranium meal.

    Anyways, glad to see a new post!

  • Dear Lasse
    Thank you!

    Alex, Thanks and yes as was the d’Auvernay ;-)

  • Wow, great pics and great wines! I assume the Lafite and Lynch Bages weren’t by the glass…

  • Dear Trine

    Good call on posting pictures with a summary instead of waiting for the full review. Although I’m looking forward to the full edition:-)
    Keep up the excellent work with work and photos!

    Lasse
    /fellow foodie

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