Happy Kanelbulle Day! To mark this most momentous occasion, YLC has taken on the arduous task of tasting countless cinnamon buns from Stockholm bakeries to bring you our Top Five. Ah, what don’t we do for you, eh? Varsågod!
For those of you who didn’t feel like preparing ahead with our D.I.Y. version yesterday, here’s where you find out where to get the best, the fluffiest, the most scrumptious Swedish buns around! We proudly present our guide to the cinnamon jungle of the city:
Fabrique is the small Stockholm stone-oven bakery that is slowly taking on the larger world. All their breads and buns are made with natural ingredients and baked in a traditional way, by hand, around the clock. In Stockholm alone there are now several Fabrique bakeries, so chances are there’s one close to you.
Soft, gooey and spiced to perfection, Fabrique’s buns take pride of place on our list. There is a harmony between the cinnamon, cardamom and amount of granulated sugar, which, when combined with the moist, doughy bun, we’re betting would make even Rachel Zoe toss up her sinewy arms in dietary defeat. At least for Kanelbulle Day, anyway.
Traditional Stockholm café Vetekatten, in the centre of the city’s shopping district, is always worth a visit. The decor is cozy and makes one think more tea room than coffee bar and the clientele varies from curious tourists to loyal locals.
Vetekatten’s kanelbullar are good, there’s no denying it. They’re perfect little creations of yummy, bready, cinnamony goodness. But, like Achilles, they have one fatal flaw, which knocks them down a peg on our list: they’re just not moist enough. They’re not the Sahara, but they’re not Fabrique either.
Top Tip: If you happen to be in Vetekatten stocking up on your sticky buns between 9am and 11am on a Monday morning, why not join local language specialist, Nina Mumm, and a group of drop dead lovely expats for a free and informal fika and chat?
We know, we were surprised too. It doesn’t look like much, but these buns put the edible in incredible. They’re moist with a gooey cinnamon paste swirled generously on its every curve. We didn’t taste much cardamom, but at only 6 sek each (on special), they’re a scrumptious steal.
Tössebageriet has featured as a place to be taken for a treat in most Stockholmers’ childhoods since 1920. Unbeknownst to many expats who don’t happen to live on Upper Östermalm (la-di-da…), most will have seen its premises without knowing it. The bakery features in almost every TV coverage of Kanelbullens Dag, as it’s in walking distance from the SVT Brodcasting House.
Tössebageriet’s kanelbullar weren’t bad, but they didn’t exactly knock our wooly, autumn socks off either. They had all the flavours spot-on, but they were a bit lacking on our moistometer. A little less time in the oven would have done the world of good for these firm buns.
Wienercaféet, dating back to 1904, is back after a major overhaul and resurfaced on the Stockholm café scene with a bang in September. Reborn as more of a French patisserie than a traditional Swedish caf – the outstanding table service, the beautiful, airy environment and the obvious care with which everything is prepared, displayed and served makes this a must for any Stockholmer who loves to fika. (Fave fika fact: If you want a slice of heaven on a plate – try their Oolong cake!)
Bearing that in mind – we had high hopes for the Wienercaféet bun, but were disappointed about how dry it was in comparison to the others we sampled (read: scoffed). Quite a few different spices were used aside from cinnamon and, while we appreciate the generosity, it borders on the wee too enthusiastic. Their saving grace were the roasted almonds sprinkled on top. A nice, original touch, but combined with all the flavours already jammed into the doughy morsel, it does send your tastebuds into overdrive.
Hoppas det smakar!
Rebecca Martin and Kirsten Smart