Olivia Hahne, our hottest new contributor, is on a one woman-and-baby mission to find the best place to have a coffee in Stockholm. This week: Rådmansgatan.
Address: Drottninggatan 102, 111 60 Stockholm Tel No: 073 374 88 12
Papa Lee Bakery is a great place for a very British, slightly-different-from–your-average-Swedish-fika, kind of fika. And if you’re after something more substantial to eat, you can get lunch in the form of toasted sandwiches, baguettes, soup, baked potatoes and salads. It’s more of a tea room than café and although it doesn’t go quite as far as bringing out the Union Jack bunting, there’s still a very British feel to this place. God save the Queen indeed.
Papa Lee is actually Lee Newby, a Brit who relocated to Stockholm and opened Finntorps Konditori & Bageri in Nacka six years ago. Papa Lee Bakery opened on Drottninggatan in October 2012 and has been attracting attention ever since, not least for their cream teas (think freshly-baked scones served with jam and whipped cream). There’s enough British selection to comfort any homesick Brit, with classics such as Eccles cakes, Bakewell tarts and Chelsea buns (actually a crossover between a Swedish bulle and a Chelsea bun….it works), savoury pastries such as Cornish pasties and sausage rolls and you can even get a proper British cuppa here in the form of PG Tips or Earl Grey tea. Papa Lee hasn’t neglected the Swedish side of things either, with bulle and semlor on offer, which is not be sneezed at. The semlor at his orginal Finntorps Konditori and Bageri has been awarded the prize for ‘Best Semlor in Nacka’.
Cost of a Latte: 27 kronor
Cost of a cup of PG Tips: 22 kronor
Cost of homemade scones with jam and cream: priceless if you’re a homesick Brit, 30 kronor to the rest of you
Perfect for: a taste of Great Britain in Stockholm
Avoid if: you’re in Stockholm to escape the UK, rather than be reminded of it
Musical equivalent: Country House by Blur
Address: Sveavägen 84, 113 50 Stockholm Tel No: 08 612 1349
This Stockholm institution pops up more than a few times after a quick Google search of where to get a good espresso in Vasastan and it doesn’t disappoint. It’s an authentic Italian joint with smartly-dressed professional baristas behind the coffee counter who know how to make a fine espresso and hand it over with a smile and a bit of banter.
I get the impression that Espresso Sosta has built up a good crowd of regulars who have found where to get a damn good coffee and aren’t going to risk going anywhere else for a lesser imitation. The food is designed for quick consumption – small Italian pastries such as cannolo, aragostine and bigné, croissants and a range of Italian toasted sandwiches.
So is it buggy friendly? Well, it’s a small coffee bar designed for grabbing a take out coffee or enjoying a quick caffeine fix at the counter. However, there are a few small tables attached to the back wall for you to rest your coffee cup and cake / sandwich plate on if you want to stay for more than a few minutes and the buggy does fit snugly underneath the table without getting in anyone’s way. Service is very friendly, with one of the guys behind the counter springing into action to open the door for me and buggy; another caffeine-hungry patron helps me and my 4-wheeled friend on our way out as well – that’s double points there as far as I’m concerned.
Cost of a Latte: 24 / 28 kronor (depending on size)
Cost of a double espresso: 19 kronor
Perfect for: a short sharp caffeine fix
Avoid if: you are after a cosy café to while away an afternoon in
Musical equivalent: Hot Stuff by Donna Summer
Address: Drottninggatan 108, 113 60 Stockholm Tel No: 08 30 40 02
Nils Café prides itself on being a Swedish café with an international touch, and is worth a mention for any homesick Germans or Italians out there, looking for a slice of home-style fika in Stockholm.
The top shelf of the cake cabinet is dedicated to German-style fika, with Käsekuchen (baked cheesecake), Apfelstrudel (apple strudel) and Kirschplunder (cherry pastries) on offer. The rest of the cake cabinet is filled with Italian sweets such as cannoli (citron, pistachio, chocolate and vanilla flavours) and Italian biscuits.
The café is pretty spacious with plenty of room for buggies and there’s a retro feel to the place, with the walls covered in coffee advert wallpaper. An added bonus is that there’s free wi-fi for anyone wielding a laptop or tablet. Not Stockholm’s most innovative or funky café but worth checking out if you have a hankering for baked cheesecake.
Cost of a Latte: 25 / 30 kronor (depending on size)
Perfect for: anyone looking for a German or Italian style treat to accompany their fika
Avoid if: ’people watching’ ranks high on your criteria when choosing a café to fika in.
Musical equivalent: Only You by Portishead