A recent weekend trip to Barcelona saw Mrs. Nibber and me have dinner at Restaurant Moo located in the über-sleek Hotel Omm, just off the city's glitzy Passeig de Gràcia. I'm not usually a fan of restaurants in hotels, often finding their atmosphere to be sterile and the food a bit of an afterthought, but I was intrigued by Moo. On paper at least, it's certainly got the credentials for a good meal – it has held a Michelin star since 2006 and the restaurant is overseen by the legendary Roca brothers, whose own 3-Michelin starred restaurant (and S.Pellegrino's second best restaurant in the world), El Celler de Can Roca, is about an hour up the road in Girona.
(You can read a more recent review of Maaemo from me here and here)
This week’s release of the 2012 Michelin Guide brought with it what will surely be the story of the year for the usually quiet Oslo restaurant scene. The latest Guide Rouge for Europe came with the news that Oslo’s restaurant Maaemo had been awarded not one, but two of the French company’s coveted stars. In doing so, Maaemo becomes the only Nordic restaurant in history to have entered the famous guide directly at the two star level. In one fell swoop, a restaurant that has been in existence for just over a year joins a rare club that includes restaurant titans such as Noma, Le Gavroche, Mugaritz, and L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon.
It's finally happening! In just a few months' time Oslo will boast its very own permanent food hall. Norway's capital has lagged behind its Nordic neighbours when it comes to indoor food markets. Stockholm has the wonderful Östermalms and Hötorgshallen food halls, Helsinki boasts the Kauppahalli food market, and Copenhagen now has the new gleaming Torvehallerne food hall. But until recently (and for a few more months yet) Oslo had nowhere permanent to buy speciality produce from local producers.