6 of the best…fika joints in Stockholm

by in Europe, Features, Places, Sweden.

You can’t visit Stockholm without enjoying a fika – a supposedly untranslatable word that is ‘back slang’ for the old Swedish word for coffee, kaffi. Back slang is when the syllables of a word are reversed, in case you were wondering. Nowadays it can be both a noun and a verb and refers to the very pleasant tradition of having coffee and a cake (most often a cinnamon bun) in the early afternoon – a sort of Swedish version of English tea in the afternoon. Of course now it can be rather more exotic and black coffee is often dropped in favour of a latte – the venues in this list each have their own special twist on this ancient custom.

When you want to travel back in time – Gamla Krogen, Skansen

Image (c) Skansen

The Skansen open-air museum should be on the itinerary of every visitor to Stockholm, and the traditional Gamla Krogen cafe is the perfect place to fika. Previously closed during the winter it is now open all year (see below) and is perfect on a cold day as it has a roaring open fire. You can choose from a selection of warm sandwiches on sourdough bread, soups, hot chocolate and waffles while enjoying the historical atmosphere.

Gamla Krogen, Skansen Museum, Stockholm Bus 44 or Tram 7

http://www.profilrestauranger.se/skansen/restauranger/  Opening hours Fri-Sun 11-15

 

When you need your bike repaired while you sip an espresso - Bianchi Cafe & Cycles

Image (c) Andy Higgs, Grown-up Travel Guide

Now here’s a concept you don’t see every day. Bike fans can combine a caffeine and cycle hit at this swish cafe in downtown Norrmalm, the Italian company’s first venture into such a project. With a mostly Italian staff on hand to prepare perfect cappuccionos and the lunchtime buffet, you can fill up on tasty fresh food while listening to the repairmen fiddling away behind the glass wall at the back of the store. In addition to the buffet the cafe offers bruschetta, ciabatta, piadina and salads as well as a deli section with take away options as well as complete meals to eat at home.

Image (c) Imaginethese.blogspot.com

Bianchi Cafe & Cycles, Norrlandsgatan 20, 111 43 Stockholm T-bana Ostermalmstorg

www.bianchicafecycles.com Opening hours (cafe): Mon-Wed 0730-19 Thu-Fri 0730-21 Sat 11-21 Sun 1130-17

 

When it has to be organic – Albert and Jacks

Image (c) Andy Higgs, Grown-up Travel Guide

Albert & Jacks have four bakery/deli combos in Stockholm with the most obvious being that near Gamla Stan on the waterfront. As well as possibly the best coffee in the Swedish capital, the sourdough bread and organic produce is legendary and deservedly popular. Be prepared to queue if you hit the morning or fika rush hours, and if you can’t grab a seat inside the small premises then take your bounty outside and enjoy it while dangling your legs over the quayside and watching the ships pass you by. Make sure you try the Blue Java before you leave Stockholm.

Image (c) Newstockholm.blogspot.com

Four locations – Gamla Stan branch visited: Skeppsbron 24, 111 30 Stockholm T-bana Gamla Stan

www.albertjacks.se Opening hours Mon-Fri 0730-17, Sat 0830-16, Sun Closed

 

When the sun is shining – Blå Porten

Image obtained from Flickr.com under Creative Commons (c) Steffen Ramsaier

The ‘Blue Door’ on Djurgården (next door to the Liljevalchs Konsthall art gallert and not far from the Grona Lund fairground or the Vasa museum is often referred to as Stockholm’s most romantic cafe. With its beautiful garden it feels like a secret refuge from the bustle of downtown but is very popular with the locals. It comes into its own on a sunny day and when you go inside to order you’ll be faced with a long table heaving with sweet delights. Traditional Swedish food is also available all day too.

Blå Porten, Djurgårdsvägen 64, 115 21 Stockholm. Bus 44, 47 or Tram 7

www.blaporten.com Opening hours Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun 11-19, Tue, Thu: 11-21

 

When you’re feeling indulgent – Xoko

Image (c) Cheesecakedream.blogspot.com

Not just your average cafe, Xoko is both visually and gastronomically stunning. A combined cafe, bakery and patisserie located in the mega-trendy Birkastan neighbourhood with an interior reminiscent of a sci-fi movie, the place is run by one of Sweden’s most renowned chocalatiers – so be prepared to forego the cinnamon bun for something altogether more extravagant. Xoko’s aforementioned owner is Magnus Johansson who has been responsible for creating the desserts for the Nobel dinners in recent years, so you are in good company. Xoko’s specialities include home-made ice cream, pralines and chocolate desserts, so turn up hungry.

Xoko, Rorstrandgatan 15, 113 40 Stockholm. T-bana St Sriksplan

www.xoko.se Opening hours Mon-Fri 0730-19, Sat-Sun: 08-18

 

When you fancy buying the chair you’re sitting on – Cafe String

Image (c) Andy Higgs, Grown-up Travel Guide

Cafe String is a SoFo landmark and if you find yourself drawn to its eccentric decor fear not – you can buy anything you see, from the coffee cup you’re sipping from to the chair in which you’re relaxing. And presumably the motorbike in the window, too. It’s a popular place serving great coffee and cakes as well as more substantial fare – on warmer days you may be lucky enough to secure one of the few outdoor tables too. As for me, I found sitting in the window on a worn armchair very appealing after wandering the streets nearby – although I must admit I wasn’t tempted to buy it. Now that motorbike, on the other hand…

Cafe String, Nytorgsgatan 38, 116 40 Stockholm. T-bana Medborgarplatsen

www.cafestring.com Opening hours Mon-Thu 09-21, Fri 09-19, Sat-Sun: 1030-19

Don’t forget to read this article on Stockholm too and consider this hotel when looking for accommodation in the Swedish capital.

We hope you enjoyed these tips – if you think we’ve missed anything out or you have questions or comments please do let us know in the box below – and make sure you sign up for email updates or subscribe to the RSS feed by using the links on the right so you don’t miss a thing from Grown-up Travel Guide! 

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2 Responses to “6 of the best…fika joints in Stockholm”

  1. Heather on her travelsMarch 28, 2012 at 21:49 #

    Great Fika hangouts – I think I had lunch at Skansen when I was in Stockholm some years ago

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    [...] is arguably the most stylish – the style in question being that of the 1960s. As with the Stockholm cafe String, you can also buy anything you see inside from the cups to the furniture, should you so [...]