Occupying a cozy space in the quaint neighborhood of Sheung Wan, we visited Hong Kong’s newest Nordic café named Hjem. Meaning ‘home’ in Norwegian, Hjem recreates the warm cozy feeling of home in the hustle and bustle of the city.
Put aside your thoughts of Norwegian food (we know you’re thinking about meatballs from IKEA) as Hjem presents a simple yet sophisticated farm-to-table menu curated by Scandinavian chef Jaakko Sorsa. You can expect a variety of healthy and hearty Nordic favorites including a wide selection of Smørrebrød, cheeses and of course coffee!
We started our tasting with classic Nordic meat dishes like the unmissable Meatballs (HK$118). A mixture of homemade pork and beef meatballs served with mashed potatoes and lingonberries, it was a warm treat that would come across our memory on a cold winter’s day. The creamy mash worked to compliment the natural umami flavor of the meat while the lingonberry added the perfect tartness for a more sophisticated taste.
With Hjem’s vast array of choices when it comes to Smørrebrød, we couldn’t miss out on not trying one, two, or even four! Smørrebrød is an open-faced sandwich that is piled high with toppings, salads and warm dishes. The base for all Smørrebrød was a generous slice of rye bread which packed a punch of healthy fiber and molasses taste.
Our most memorable pick includes the Arctic Prawn Smørrebrød (HK$108) which is topped with organic boiled egg, Norwegian trout roe, dill mayonnaise and fresh dill. Served cold, it was the perfect light lunch or snack on a summer’s day. Vegetarian options such as the Asparagus Smørrebrød also ranked highly as it was topped generously with baby spinach, red radish and light hazelnut oil.
The perfect complement to the Smorrebrod were the light sides, which were priced affordably at just HK$48 for a hefty scoop of salad, including a vegan-friendly Fresh Cucumber & Dill Salad tossed in vinegar and the crunchy Pickled Beetroot & Apple Salad tossed in sour cream and mayonnaise.
The crème de la crème of the experience was Hjem’s signature dessert, a Giant Cinnamon & Cardamom Bun Rolls (HK$98) which is topped with pearl sugar. With the perfect balance of sweetness and a good cinnamon-to-cardamom ratio which doesn’t overwhelm the palate, it was the perfect treat to have at the end of the meal, washed down with a cup of Joe.
Hjem’s coffee blends are sourced from all around the world, serving only the top-quality brews which can be purchased to enjoy at home. Alongside classic coffee drinks like Americano, cappuccino’s and latte’s – which is certified ‘Great’ by us, Hjem also serves signature coffee-based drinks that are made with local ingredients, including the Honey Milk Golden Latte (HK$45) and the Lemon & Raspberry Posset Affogato (HK$60).
For a more refreshing note, check out Hjem’s cocktail program put together by consultant Chanel Adams which includes cleaner beverages with lower ABV percentages. Our favorite was the unique Cinnamon Bun Espresso Martini (HK$98), a vodka-based cocktail featuring sweet notes made with cinnamon bun orgeat, homemade coffee liqueur, bitters and finished with a cardamom pod. With the perfect amount of sweetness and a twist to the classic Espresso Martini, it was a great way to end the meal with a sweet treat.
Overall, the atmosphere and food at Hjem provide comfort and healthy bites to anyone around the Sheung Wan area. The interior is paneled with wood with soft music playing in the background, making it the perfect escape from the city as you sip and enjoy the warmness of the food prepared.
Hjem; 161 Hollywood Road, Tai Ping Shan, Hong Kong; +852 2362 9193