If you’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting Sweden, that great Nordic nation of pointy-helmeted beardy-weirdies past and tall leggy gods/goddesses present, you will know that the noble inhabitants of this country have fuelled their great achievements – rape, pillage and flawless bone-structure – almost entirely on cinnamon buns, now found among London bakeries too. If you don’t believe us, check out the ‘Snack’ section of Hg2 Stockholm: you can’t move for the things.
However, we at Hg2 are quietly confident, nay, smug even, that we have found a London establishment that can match, if not better, the best that this country has to offer, and-brace yourself-it’s not Swedish, but Finnish. It comes from the Nordic Bakery in Covent Garden, a masterpiece of achingly chic, minimalist interior design (think arctic pine forests and slatted wooden saunas in the snow) with green-tiled walls, exposed pine wood and high ceilings.
The food is strongly FennoScandinavian: herring, Jarlsberg cheese and lingonberry jam feature prominently on their open sandwiches (not, we hasten to add, all together), perched on top of dark rye bread. For sweet treats, there are Swedish tosca cakes, blueberry buns and weekend oven pancakes, but the crowning glory has to be the Cinnamon Buns: one warm, oozing, unctuous bite and you will see why these babies are worth their capital letters.
The coffee, needless to say, is also excellent, served in cups from the iconic Finnish designer (and our personal all-time favourite) Kaj Franck. When we discovered this, Nordic Nirvana had indeed been reached. Finally, we’ve saved the best news until last: Nordic Bakery now has three other outlets alongside their Covent Garden flagship: New Cavendish St and Dorset St, both Marylebone, and Golden Square, Soho. Now all they have to do is open an outlet in the corner of our office and we can die happy.