Ask the Danes what Danish food is and they will respond “Smørrebrød” which means open-faced sandwich. Sandwich makers in Denmark have the freedom to pile their creations as high as gravity will allow. Imagine buttered rye bread topped with breaded fish, salad, cucumber, shrimp, sort stenbiderrogn and then keep imagining. Like most things Danish, these sandwich are visually appealing.
The display of Smørrebrød at the Glass Market in Norreport
While Smørrebrød is the traditional Danish food, many Danes will not put it high on their lists of favorite foods. They honor the tradition of the royal dish while seeking out other types of eats. What is the best kind of Danish food then? In my American opinion, it is the burgers. Therefore, I have binged for the past two weeks on the so-called best burgers in Copenhagen to decide for myself which one is best. This blog is an excuse for me to eat!
1. Tommi’s Burger Joint (https://www.burgerjoint.dk)
Located in the hip and up-and-coming industrial area of Vesterboro, Tommi’s Burger Joint serves a delectable mixture of greasy flavor, fresh lettuce, onion and tomato, and mayo. I recommend spending the extra 20,- Dkk for bacon. Served medium, this burger was the only one that truly captured an understanding that a little pink in the middle is the fastest way to flavor. The seating area is the third largest on the list with seven tables crammed into a hole-in-the-wall style place. Uma Thurman eyed me down from the Pulp Fiction poster hanging on the wall while I ate my favorite burger in Copenhagen.
2. The Gasoline Grill (https://www.facebook.com/gasolinegrill/)
Gasoline Grill wins the prize for the most unique dining experience. A six-minute walk north of Konges Nytorv station, this burger place gets in name from being in an actual gas station. With no indoor seating and crammed area for ordering, Gasoline Grill makes the most of its space. I ordered the Cheese Burger and Fries combo. The best parts of this burger were the buttery bun and the Gasoline sauce. Its hours are from 11 am to whenever they run out of burgers. I recommend eating there for lunch for the guarantee of getting a bite of the deliciousness. Bring a warm jacket too!
3. Jagger Burger (http://jagger.dk/jagger-fastfood-info/)
Jagger Burger has more of Five Guys/Smashburger/Moyaah kind of feel. The owners probably have a business plan, several large institutional investors and franchising model ready to go, but don’t let the “man” get you down. There was more seating, which you learn to appreciate after eating your burger on a park bench near Gasoline Grill when the temperature is below freezing. The meat was not as good—it felt like something I would make on my stove-top kitchenette, but all the other pieces were there. Overall, it was a good experience and can provide a nice break from taking the train 20 minutes to the “hip part of town” with a location in Frederiksberg.
4. Banana Joes (https://www.facebook.com/BananaJoevchiheb/)
Table for 2-4? Perfect, that is all Banana Joes has. Banana Joes had the best service and lowest prices. Plus, I am pretty sure the owner made the burgers himself. Though the burger tasted slightly like a sloppy joe with falafel seasoning, I still enjoyed it. Many reviews place this place at the top of their list. I no doubt agree should be on the list, but it certainly falls short of Tommi’s and Gasoline Grill.
5. Halifax Burgers (https://www.halifax.dk)
This was the first Copenhagen burger I had. It is the most expensive, but offers the most options with add-ons taking a full page on the menu. Halifax provides plenty of seating and a friendly staff. Located right off of the Frederiksberg stop, it is a great place to take visitors if they have had a long day of travel and walking around. Halifax takes burgers in a more culinary direction topping them with pickles red onions, fried eggs and aioli mayo. Pictured below, my burger was topped with a hash brown patty instead of a top bun.
The Copenhagen burger scene offers a lot of variety. I am sure there are more greasy places to discover. I am not tired of burgers yet, so I will update this list as I continue to explore. When in Copenhagen, try the Smørrebrød for the experience, but then go to a burger place for some real satisfaction.
*Opinions in this post reflect the views of the blogger and are not an endorsement by the Wisconsin School of Business