Norwegian journalist Line Henriksen has visited Aalborg - again...
My second visit to Aalborg was on a sunny, warm summer’s day. A spontaneous shopping trip with four girlfriends. We landed outside a café with a view of half-timbered houses and a lively shopping environment. I took home a lovely pair of marked down shoes, my friend found a lovely dress, and we all enjoyed a nice lunch, glad that we were a long way from the large discount stores. We all wished we could have stayed longer in Aalborg, and it was only by the skin of our teeth that we made the ferry home to Norway!
On the motorway, cruising through the wild North Jutland landscape, I wondered why coming to Aalborg seemed so different this time. The first time, I was too rushed - an injustice to any interesting city - and the gentleman who was guiding me, immediately hauled me to Jomfru Ane Gade - and there is a limit to how much beer even I can consume during an afternoon of sightseeing.
When I came back a third time, on a February morning, and I saw the morning mist floating over the Limfjord, the rays of sunshine beaming from Nørresundby. I had a hot double latte, and I felt delighted to be in Aalborg again.
Aalborg is like a box of chocolates - just one sweet surprise after another. In a small side street, we found glassblower Lene Højlund's boutique with imaginative fashions, and in Penny Lane shop, we found homemade blueberry jam, lemon curd and a well-aged Samsø cheese.
In an old courtyard in the centre of town is Lange Kunsthåndværk (arts and crafts). And on one of Aalborg’s high streets, you can disappear underground, if you need to seek refuge. In Algade, outside Salling department store, a glass elevator takes you down to an The Franciscan Friary Museum. Here, you can vividly imagine the friars’ daily life 750 years ago, far from the hectic street life bustling above your head.
There are numerous galleries in the city, for instance Galerie Wolfsen in Tiendeladen. You should also take a stroll in the Hjelmerstald district, where the houses are beautiful and it is hard to avoid a little window-peeping.
What do you do when the chef and the food are both irresistible? At Restaurant Mortens Kro owned by one of Denmark’s most renowned chefs Morten Nielsen, you will experience a party for all senses. Here you meet the man who compares a good meal to a long kiss: You remember the thrill and forget everything else. And just like a kiss can be a promise of coming pleasure, a scrumptious dish can be a promise of even better things to come. In our case, this became evident after the first course was followed by five more – with a sorbet of grapefruit and honey in between.
“The good things in life are simple,” says Morten. “I want to stimulate all the senses during a meal. It’s important to take time to enjoy all the nuances. I prefer to eat with my eyes closed, because then I taste it more. We also close our eyes, when we kiss, don’t we?”. And when we had licked the last drops of our chocolate parfait off the plates, we too sat with our eyes closed, as we waited for the bill.
What we dreamed about shall remain secret!
Jomfru Ane Gade
Jomfru Ane Gade 1-20
Glaspusteriet Lene Højlund
Restaurant Mortens Kro