restaurant Spisa - Gothenburg © 2014 . All rights reserved.

14 Jan ’14

Matts Johansson is a coffee man pur sang, even if he didn’t really drink coffee in his previous life. A couple of decades ago the Swedish economy wasn’t really going well, so Matts decided to work together with his father in his construction company. The location was somewhere along the beautiful west coast of Sweden, close to Gothenburg. In simple cafes young Matt saw working-class people, like himself, coming together to drink coffee and having a good time. He found the concept interesting and took the idea back to the city where there was no real coffee culture at that moment. Matts opened Cafe Java in 1993 and two years later, Café Espresso in the rougher neighbourhood of Victoriapassagen in central Gothenburg. Matts started the coffee (bar) culture in Gothenburg and contributed in cleaning up a forgotten area and making it a hot and happening spot.

After two decennia, Matts is one of the most renowned coffee makers in the country, often invited to prestigious events like the MAD Festival René Redzepi. He can help top-restaurateurs to fine-tune the coffee experience at the end of a diner. According to Matt, restaurants are still struggling with coffee. For wine, there is a sommelier, for beer there are experts too but when it comes to coffee,…. nobody.

In his cozy bakery Da Mateo we taste “long drip” coffee from Rwanda and participate in a casual coffee tasting. Rows of cups with fresh roasted coffee are lined up to be tasted. We sip, slurp, taste and judge. The biggest surprise is the Geisha coffee from Panama: expensive but a real taste sensation.

Matts his favourite Gothenburg addresses:

- Spisa a new restaurant in the ” Soho neighbourhood” of Gothenburg. A combination of French, Italian and Spanish cuisine and wines in a casual and urban context.

- Rover Beer Bar, an intimate cafe where you can try all the local beers from in and around Gothenburg. Ideal to socialize with some eccentric habitués at the bar.

- Hello Monkey in the car -free Magasinsgatan in the centre. An established name in the city to try Asian inspired food.

- Barabico for “modern dining” with an emphasis on grilled dishes prepared in an open kitchen. This new restaurant is always packed, so definitely book.

- Feskekorka the “Fish Curch” in Gothenburg where you can buy every day fresh fish, shrimp, crab, mussels, … Try restaurant Gabriels in the “church”, an establishment that has been here for ages, serving uncomplicated and fresh see food dishes.

Matts Johansson (left) / Rover Beer Bar (right)restaurant Mr.Pee (left) / oysters @ Feskekorka (right)restaurant Gabriels in the Feskekorka or Fish Church

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