Where to drink

Lonely Planet (UK) - - Best Travel 2019 -

These days, al­co­hol seems to be sub­ject to the same cre­ativ­ity in Copen­hagen as food. Take Em­pir­i­cal Spir­its (em­pir­i­cal­spir­its.co), founded by Lars Williams (pic­tured above), a former chef-sci­en­tist at Noma’s Nordic Food Lab. Un­like many dis­tillers, who buy in in­dus­tri­ally made ethanol as a base, Em­pir­i­cal makes it from scratch us­ing top - qual­ity grains, fer­ment­ing them with koji (the fun­gus used to make sake in Ja­pan) and adding botan­i­cals, from quince tea to wild pea flow­ers. Em­pir­i­cal will open its first tast­ing room this win­ter in Ref­shaleøen, shar­ing a ware­house space with Broaden & Build (broad­en­build­cph.com), a brewer y- cum- ca­sual restau­rant com­ing in Jan­uar y from Amass’s Matt Orlando. Nearby on Ref­shaleøen is the lat­est bar from pi­o­neer mi­cro­brew­ers Mikkeller (mikkeller.dk), where nat­u­rally fer­mented brews,slow aged in wooden casks, take cen­tre stage. For­merly a car-re­pair shop, Mikkeller Ref­shaleøen (pic­tured right) has vin­tage cars parked out­side (one retro­fit­ted as a beer­mo­bile with its own taps), as well as food trucks and a seat­ing area over­look­ing the har­bour. Nat­u­ral-style wines are also big in Copen­hagen, and can be tried at La Banchina (la­banchina.dk; pic­tured above), a shack turned Ital­ian café in Ref­shaleøen. Lo­cals laze on the pier in sum­mer, glasses in hand, feet dan­gling in the wa­ter. There’s a sauna in­side for those who need en­cour­ag­ing to take a dip in win­ter. Just by the car-free bridge cross­ing the har­bour, Den Van­drette (den­van­drette.dk) has a se­lec­tion of bio­dy­namic wines, and ser ves shar­ing plates in a warm, homely at­mos­phere (pic­tured below) that em­bod­ies the Dan­ish con­cept of hygge, with its can­dles, rugs and dried flow­ers.

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