Friday 10th June 2016
The Café Proviant is a pub-restaurant born of a simple concept. It offers Swedish and International dishes made of the finest fresh local ingredients. It is part of a small chain of three restaurants and a shop established by Frederik Anderson.
The first opened in 2007 and this particular operation on central Kungsholmen Island opened its doors on 9th May 2014. An on-site microbrewery was included and this branch specialises in pairing food with beer.
The limited menu is forever changing to reflect the availability of the freshest supplies from farmers and growers around the country. They even have their own herb garden. It is described as a gastro-pub and I suppose it is, but in the nicest way. Just very good food with home-brewed beer.
It is not like a lot of pubs in the UK that style themselves with that title. Here, it’s no problem to just turn up to drink a beer or two. In fact there is an area in front of the brewing equipment that is set aside for just for this purpose. This was a good place to settle as the pub soon filled up with lunchtime diners from offices in the neighbourhood.
On this visit I was with Patrick and we were there at opening time for the lunch period. In fact we were there a bit earlier.
So, don’t do as we did and trust the opening hours shown on a well-known beer ratings site, they often seemed to be wrong, especially in Sweden.
The first thing we noticed were the outside tables. Unfortunately they were hemmed it by the hoardings protecting a construction site. However, it won’t always be like that.
Inside, we turned right into the main bar room. As is usual in Sweden, wood was prominent with the polished table tops all made up for the lunchtime diners. There are a number of stools lined up in front of the illuminated bar counter. The walls have green-painted wood panelling to waist height. The restaurant is beyond and has a number of round wooden tables.
To the left of the entrance is the brewery itself, see photograph of the small fermentation vessels. It is a 200 litre plant made by Braumeister in Germany.
The beers are normally matured for four weeks. Brewing is done once a week, on a Sunday. The brewer is Roger Almström and all of their draught beers are produced here. He brews their bottled beers at Sundbybergs Köksbryggerei in the north-eastern Stockholm suburb of Sundbyberg.
Swedish laws on the sale of alcohol are very restrictive and it is not possible to purchase beer from a bar, pub or restaurant to take away. The only outlet for off-sales are the state-owned Systemsbolaget shops.
These are found in most towns and offer a good range at reasonable prices. And here, all is not lost as there is one just around the corner in Fleminggaten which does stock Proviant beers. However, be aware of the somewhat limited opening hours.
The beers on offer when we visited were Röd (Red) Ale (5.4%); Dark Mild (2.9%); Irish Dry Stout (4.9%) and, in bottles: Brittisk (Vinteröl) Ale (5.5%). There was also their Skärgårdscider (Stockholm Archipelago cider) (4.5%). They advertised a guest tap yet I missed what it was dispensing. Previously this pub has sold Oskar Blues (Longmont, Colorado, USA) Dale’s Pale Ale (6.5%) and also other transatlantic beers.
The selection makes this a good beer visit and it is easy to get to, so you shouldn’t miss it if you are in Stockholm.
Café Proviant, Abetargatan 33, Stockholm. Tel: 084 095 6052
Hours: Monday-Friday 11.30-15.00, 17.00-24.00; Sat 17.00-24.00; Sun Closed.
The easiest way to get here is on the Tunnelbana (T-Banen/Metro) to Fridemsplan station. There are two routes to this station: T17/T18/T19 or T10/T11. The platforms of these two routes are a long way from each other, even underground, so directions to the pub are different from each set of lines.
The simplest is from the route T17-T19 platforms. You must exit from the Fleminggaten exit. Once in Fleminggaten you might have to cross a main road, St Eriksgatan. However you need to continue along Fleminggatan in a westerly direction, passing MacKinlays pub on the left and the Systembologet store on the right. After two blocks, turn right into Abetargatan.
The pub is on the left side.
Should you arrive on the T10-T11 lines, leave the platforms at the Fridemsgatan escalator. Continue to follow the signs towards the Fridemsgatan exit until you arrive on that street. Turn right into it and pass the Lion Bar on your right. Two blocks on you will cross Fleminggatan. Turn left into it and the Systembologet store is on the right. After one block, turn right into Abetargatan. The pub is on the left side.
There are also several bus routes to this area including the Airport Express.