Don’t know where to start to get to know the culinary scene in the Danish capital? Check out our guide to the 5 best restaurants in Copenhagen. The Danish capital is a hotbed of culinary innovation with a thriving food scene that ranks high among the best things to do in the city.

This is the birthplace of New Nordic cuisine, where seasonal ingredients are king and proximity is key. The best restaurants in Copenhagen cover a lot of ground, from salt-of-the-earth home cooking to Michelin-star magic. Dinnertime in the Danish capital is an absolute delight, no matter what neighborhood you find yourself in.

The best restaurants in Copenhagen

1. Noma restaurant

noma restaurant

Rene Redzepi’s celebrated restaurant will always be synonymous with Copenhagen’s culinary revolution, and years after its radical relaunch in a former ammunition depot near Christiania, the city’s infamous commune, it remains the hottest spot. The dishes at this restaurant are as stunning as ever, with the Redzepi team rebooting the menu three times a year to showcase the best ingredients of the season.

2. Selma restaurant

copenhagen best restaurants

The Michelin guide made culinary history when he awarded Selma a Bib Gourmand (for exceptionally good food at moderate prices). She was the first smørrebrød local to receive the accolade, and the man responsible for taking traditional Danish lunch to the next level was a Swedish chef. Nationalist feathers ruffled, but fans of open-faced sandwiches cheered. Selma puts a contemporary twist on the classic, using creative toppings like elderflower herring with crème fraîche and buckwheat.

3. Cafe Istanbul

cafe istanbul

Cafe Istanbul is a popular restaurant in Copenhagen that offers a taste of authentic Turkish cuisine. The menu features a wide variety of dishes, from traditional kebabs to vegetarian options like stuffed eggplant and spinach and feta börek. The restaurant also boasts a warm and welcoming atmosphere, with colorful decor and friendly staff. Conveniently located in the Vesterbro neighborhood, Cafe Istanbul is the perfect spot to enjoy a delicious meal before exploring nearby attractions like the Meatpacking District and Tivoli Gardens.

4. Alouette restaurant

alouette restaurant

This stylish, low-key restaurant earned a Michelin star in its first year, and it’s easy to see why. American chefs Nick Curtin and Andrew Valenzuela create seasonal dishes with global influences, such as mackerel with fermented cucumber beurre blanc or roasted pumpkin with caviar and blackberries. Housed in a former factory in the post-industrial neighborhood of Islands Brygge, Alouette is accessed via a graffiti-covered service elevator, a striking contrast to the restaurant’s glam decor and intimate setting.

5. Juno bakery

juno bakery

You know you have arrived at this upscale Østerbro bakery when you see the line out the door. That is if you haven’t caught the heavenly aroma of Juno’s cardamom buns yet. Made by Swedish baker and Noma alumnus Emil Glaser. Seating is extremely limited, and Juno only serves filtered coffee, but the wait is well worth it.

6. Amass restaurant

amass restaurant

Sustainability is the watchword at the stylish restaurant with painted walls by former Noma head chef Matt Orlando. The menu highlights locally sourced, seasonal ingredients. Berries, herbs and greens that come straight from Amass’ luscious orchard, while the kitchen’s relentless zero-waste ethos helps craft smart dishes like chewy beetroot with pecan pulp custard and salty berries. Situated on the post-industrial peninsula of Refshaleøen, Amass is best reached by ferry from the port.

7. Alchemist

As Noma bids farewell at the conclusion of 2024, though it remains noteworthy for anticipated pop-ups and collaborations in Copenhagen and beyond, the dynamic landscape of creative fine dining in Copenhagen is undergoing a transformative shift. Alchemist, presently holding the fifth position on the World’s Best list, offers an audacious and mind-bending culinary adventure. Helmed by the unconventional chef Rasmus Munk, guests are treated to a staggering array of 50 small courses, accompanied by a sensory explosion. From snowballs with the essence of tomatoes to dishes presented on a silicone tongue, the experience at Alchemist is truly unlike any dining encounter you’ve ever had.

8. Goldfinch

Nestled down a shadowy alley adjacent to Nyhavn’s bustling thoroughfare, Goldfinch exudes an air of clandestine charm, as if transported from a hidden corner in old Hong Kong rather than situated in a Northern European city. Embracing Copenhagen’s New Asian Wave, a phenomenon marked by the surge of Korean, Chinese, and Japanese establishments in recent years, Goldfinch promises a dining experience characterized by shared plates, sophisticated cocktails, and innovative dishes like sweet and sour pork with strawberries. Reserving a table in advance is advised, as this spot has become the current focal point for the trendy and discerning crowd.

9. Alouette

Earning a Michelin star in its inaugural year, this understated fine dining establishment, Alouette, impresses with good reason. Chefs Nick Curtin and Andrew Valenzuela curate seasonal dishes infused with global influences, such as mackerel paired with fermented cucumber beurre blanc or charred pumpkin adorned with caviar and mulberries. Now situated in chic new premises at the heart of Copenhagen, the restaurant emphasizes sustainable dining while showcasing fresh and sophisticated Danish flavors. Originally located in a rock ‘n’ roll neighborhood, the decision to relocate mirrors the chefs’ aspiration to amplify their culinary impact.

10. Nihao YAO

In Copenhagen, the culinary scene is currently ablaze with global flavors, ranging from Ethiopian injera to Surinamese peanut soup. However, our preferred spot is a charming 16-seat, family-operated Taiwanese restaurant. Renowned for their homemade offerings, standout dishes include the irresistibly soft pork belly bao, often referred to as the Taiwanese hamburger, and the classic potstickers, dumplings that strike the perfect balance between a steamed interior and a crispy exterior. For the fortunate diner, owner Lishiang of Nihao YAO might even present two off-menu bao options, featuring minced pork and red bean paste fillings respectively.