The global finance crisis has brought changes to Copenhagen's restaurant scene. Sustainability, seasonal produce and campaigns against food waste are now bigger buzzwords than luxury dining or $200 bottles of champagne.
Almanak, on the first floor of The Standard, offers sea views and a modern Danish kitchen. — Photo courtesy of The Standard
The former Custom House, which opened with much media attention in 2006, as the 23rd restaurant in Sir Terence Conran's dining empire, was considered the in-spot for both local and visiting celebrities before bankruptcy forced its closure in February 2013.
No cobwebs got the chance to accumulate on the harborfront, however, as two of Copenhagen's biggest names in the hospitality business, New Nordic pioneer Claus Meyer and jazz musician Niels Lan Doky, have teamed up to reopen the complex under the name: The Standard. The two business partners can now add the new restaurant to a resume that includes Restaurant Radio, Noma, and Jazzhus Montmartre.
The Standard retains the concept of housing four independent units under one roof, but these eateries bear little resemblance to the old Customs House, with modern Danish gastronomy, Pan-Indian cooking and an intimate jazz club rubbing shoulders in fresh surroundings.
The facade of the old Customs & Excise building, an art deco landmark on Copenhagen's waterfront that dates from 1937, has been given a fresh green paint job. Søren Varming, the great-grandson of the original architect, was charged with designing the logos for the complex and its four units: two down, two up.
The original art deco design of the 1930s building has been emphasized in the new restaurant The Standard. — Photo courtesy of The Standard
Drop in for breakfast, lunch or dinner in the casual setting of modern Danish restaurant Almanak, enjoy the best of the modern, Pan-Indian kitchen in Verandah or head upstairs to Studio, where chef Torsten Vidgaard, formerly of Noma, presents New Nordic gastronomy from 5.30pm Tuesday to Saturday; and where a jazz club presents two shows nightly with full bar. You can attend a concert without dining, dine without a concert, or enjoy both.
The Standard opened in October 2013.