Scandinavian Kitchen, London
The Scandinavian Kitchen serves a good range of open sandwiches and tasty cakes seven days a week, daytimes only. It's a good place to take a break if you have the misfortune to end up shopping on Oxford Street.
It's run by Jonas (a Swede) and Bronte (a Dane). Their enthusiasm and good humour has helped them to create a relaxed and popular cafe. They are assisted by a young team, nearly all of whom are Scandinavians on seemingly never-ending gap years. Despite London's high rents they seem a happy bunch.
It's a cafe that is getting noticed as Jonas was recently featured in Waitrose Weekend, an up-market supermarket newspaper. The cheery Swede enthuses readily about Swedish food and shows an obvious sign of enjoying a lot of it.
Scandi Kitchen is on the north side of Oxford Street, about 250 metres from Oxford Circus tube station, on Great Titchfield Street. It's easy to find: walk east from Oxford Circus tube station along the north side of Oxford Street and turn left on to Great Titchfield Street, when you get to Sweden's fashion house, H&M.
Once on Great Titchfield Street you can't miss Scandi, as it is more affectionately known, because they always have a black board outside, often with a double entendre about topless Scandinavians.
It's all about the food
Getting a seat at lunchtime isn't always easy and they are often busy in the afternoon too. They have about a dozen tables on the ground floor, more in the cellar and a few seats outside. The tables are very close together and the decor is not the best example of Scandinavian design, but everyone is there for the food.
It's all good value and nicely presented. A 3-piece smörgåsbord of sandwiches, wraps and salads is only £6.50. A plate of Swedish meatballs piled high with salads to satisfy even the hungriest of Vikings is only £6.95. Delicious homemade cakes are £2.75.
Share a semla
There is a relaxed atmosphere with lots of Scandinavians meeting up for long fika breaks and often small groups holding informal business meetings. Three people were sharing one of Scandi's semla (a creamy Lenten bun shown above), making me feel guilty as I scoffed one all by myself.
There is also a small shop attached to the cafe with mainly Danish and Swedish products, plus a few packs of Norwegian salmon. Well, what else does Norway produce?
Not only is Scandi the best place for a break if you have the misfortune to be shopping on Oxford Street, their smörgåsbord is worth a detour and putting up with the hordes of Primarkers. You can always share a semla.
Address: 61 Great Titchfield Street, London W1W 7PP
Nearest tube station: Oxford Circus
Other reviews: Tripadvisor
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