I had just recuperated from some bizarre light form of food poisoning in Norway on the In Flames tour, when it was the night before I was to fly into Stockholm and evade being in the tour bus. Evade being in the tour bus I say? Well… we explained it before - but will happily reiterate:
We arrived to the pre-In Flames headlining dates in Europe to find that the bus company we hired, MZ (German bus company) had sent us out a bus that we didn't order. We initially picked a completely different bus - one hand picked by our tour manager at the time Brian - and naturally, when we were to be picked up by this steam-ship of a vintage European bus… we weren't happy. To prevent completely retelling the same old story again, basically the driver was a klutz and an unsafe driver. At one point, he knocked off the exhaust pipe off of the bus and the engine began leaking diesel fume directly into our bunks. I awoke one day to semi-sealed shut eyes due to mucous-crust, an awful black-lung coal-worker style cough, and zero voice. Instead of putting the shite coffee maker through the windshield and creating further drama - I began flying from show to show until I met the new bus.
I had just returned from Poland into Norway, played an amazing Norwegian show - only - I picked up some odd parasitic-style stomach-thing. It took a bit to recover, but when I finally did… I did what any rational recently-toxic-gut-aching person would do: contacted a local buddy to get a great local meal.
Darren is the Roadrunner records rep in Sweden. He is from Australia, but lived in the UK for a while, and now is in Sweden. That's sorta confusing eh? Anywho - I hit him up mentioning I'd be in a day early and that we ought to catch up for a bite and drink the night before the show. Darren swung by the hotel to pick me up and took me to one of his favorite spots: Lydmar.
The Lydmar is a hotel with a restaurant and bar downstairs. This place is hip. Undeniably tastefully hip. It's young and cool and well-designed. A local artists' newest pieces are on display once you walk into the lobby; dressed-to-the-nines are the workers and patrons alike - but not stuffy-style - more Brooklyn-style. The interior is iconically Swedish in the sense that everything goes. The Swedes truly have interior design and exterior structural-design down to a science. The inside of Lydmar is how I want to be able to decorate my place. That sorta vintage French hotel meets new-school lighting and shelving.
We sit and order our food and drinks.
I go for a local Stockholm beer that I unfortunately missed the name of; we start with spot on crusty-chewy-perfect Swedish bread and butter and marinated olives. Such simple, familiar things here so far - but hot damn is it all damn good. My next course is a Steak Tartare done exquisitely - texturally exactly as a tartare ought to be; the flavors of the capers and raw egg and onion peeking out only briefly enough to not overshadow the perfect meat. Toasted, grilled bread and salad served alongside - magically complex and simple and classic.
Duck Confit was my main. It came accompanied by some seasonal vegetables and nice reduced sauce underneath. Nice and crispy on the outside, delicate and juicy on the inside. Perfect. Lydmar's mashed potatoes didn't mess around either - whipped and creamy.
Desert was an Apple Tart with cream. Just like the rest - a delight.
Darren and I had a great time at Lydmar - a quiet evening with good food and friends. Afterwards, I headed back to rest up for the upcoming massive show in Stockholm with my dear friends in In Flames.