The foodie traveller ...
Hotdog heaven in Oslo
Forget hygge, or cosiness. The original Nordic lifestyle trend was all about the ultimate in comfort food: hotdogs. The Syverkiosken is an Oslo landmark. The kiosk, near to Alexander Kiellands plass, has been serving hotdogs since 1979. And with prices starting from 20 krone (£1.90), it’s one of the city’s cheapest snack options.
But there’s more to the Norwegian love of hotdogs than just a cheap snack. There used to be more than 40 such kiosks around town but lateopening Syverkiosken is the last one standing, fending off cheap hotdogs from convenience stores with its family recipes and retro-fashion style.
“Hotdog kiosks have always been a part of our culture, a place where people from all walks of life stand beside each other,” says owner Erlend Dahlbo. “For Norwegians, real hotdogs are the taste of nostalgia.”
Erlend only uses boiled wiener (Viennese) sausages – apparently the fried, German-style bratwurst, which some may expect, are favoured in the west of Norway. What differentiates these to hotdogs in Denmark or Iceland is the topping: a thick potato pancake.
I order The Special, a hotdog served in a bread roll with potato salad and mushrooms picked fresh that morning in the forest outside Oslo, with a can of Tøyen-Cola, a local take on Coke.
The taste is at once comforting yet also deliciously spiced, with a particularly fiery brand of mustard and, when I accidentally smear my chin with sauce, it feels like a badge of honour. I’m lost in a moment of hotdog heaven.
• Maridalsveien 45, Oslo; more cheap eats in the capital from visitoslo.com
Dog days … Erlend Dahlbo’s hotdog kiosk is the last of its kind in Oslo