Skip to main content

Traditional Danish food at Café Gammeltorv

When you eat Danish food at Café Gammeltorv, the recipes are filled with history. Open sandwiches, perhaps one of the most Danish dishes you can eat, were invented in the 1880s when small open sandwich restaurants began to appear on the streets of Copenhagen.

Since then, it has taken the country by storm, with a growing number of open sandwich shops seen across the kingdom.

Over 35 snaps

Denmark's food scene embraces reinterpretations of traditional Danish food

Abroad, in recent years, there has also been a growing interest in Danish food, often categorized as 'new Nordic'. There is a plethora of different dishes, ranging from fried pork with parsley sauce to the summery dessert of red berry pudding with cream. Today, one sees a number of restaurants reinterpreting the old, classic dishes. Some may argue that classic Danish food can only be made one way, but a more widespread acceptance of reinterpretations is rapidly spreading among the country's restaurateurs.

Certainly, one is familiar with the cold table from various family gatherings, consisting entirely of a series of cold dishes. It is a custom that has been around for many decades and is particularly served at Christmas, Easter, and Pentecost, but also as a more common form of Danish food at various gatherings. Typically, one starts with dishes with fish, then a series of meat dishes, and finally cheese for dessert.

Dansk madkultur

The roots of Danish culinary culture and the central role of pork

Our national culinary culture largely stems from the old farmhouse kitchen, where working and weather conditions were typically harsh. This meant that one had to eat nutritious foods filled with important vitamins, minerals, and proteins. Old Danish food therefore typically consisted of pork, potatoes, and other vegetables from the fields. Pork has been and continues to be a crucial factor in cooking, and today there are actually more pigs in Denmark than there are people.

Danish food culture
Danish food traditions from Christmas table to open sandwiches

Danish food traditions from Christmas table to open sandwiches

In today's Denmark, most people associate holidays, special occasions, and other special days with very specific dishes. For Christmas Eve, for example, it has become a norm in most homes to eat duck and roast pork, while in other parts of Denmark, traditions such as the Southern Jutland cake table are still held, where various cakes are served to the company.

Rye bread and beer have also been a fundamental part of Danish food for centuries. Not to forget, potatoes and heavy gravy as a supplement to some meat have also been a regular part of the food culture for many years. There is a clear reason why one can enjoy delicious open sandwiches with so many different types of toppings. Rye bread is found across all social strata, from the lunchbox in the school bag all the way to the most expensive and finest Michelin-starred restaurants, which interpret their very own version of the traditional rye bread open sandwiches.

Kaffe og avec

Authentic Danish food culture at Café Gammeltorv

Our café and eatery are as traditional and Danish as the food we serve. Our beautiful building was erected in 1795 and is depicted in literature and in various paintings by Copenhagen painters who have used Gammeltorv as a motif over time. We are very proud of our history and cultural heritage in Copenhagen, which we take pride in conveying to our guests and tourists. We do this, among other things, through our beautiful premises, which today stand preserved from the turn of the last century; with wood panels on the walls, decorated with paintings of beautiful landscapes in Denmark and pictures of members of our royal family.

We serve beautifully arranged Danish food on royal porcelain, to be enjoyed with polished silverware while schnapps is poured into tall and elegant schnapps glasses. Traditions and our history are very important to us, and therefore you will have an authentic experience at Café Gammeltorv, where the waiters, in shirt and vest, will serve you the best from Denmark's kitchen.

Authentic Danish food culture at Café Gammeltorv

Gammeltorv 20
1457 København K

Tlf:+45 3312 8786
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
CVR: 39684098

Opening hours

Tuesday to Saturday 11:30 – 17:00
Sunday from 12:00 – 16:00

The kitchen closes at 16:00

About Cafe Gl. Torv

Café Gammeltorv is owned and run by the couple Steen Hovn Petersen and Fabienne Sørensen. All of the food is made from scratch of the best produce and none the least made with love.