Noord eetcafe is just one of the many new and well-reviewed restaurants sprouting up on South Philadelphia’s East Passyunk Avenue, a revitalized area of the city recently named one of the 10 Best Foodie Streets in America by Food & Wine Magazine. Noord sits modestly on a corner just off the main street, East Passyunk, known as ‘pashunk’ by Philly natives, giving passerbys the impression that this is just another building in a sea of South Philly row homes.
What makes this place special, however, is that it is one of the only places in the City of Brotherly Love where you can try exceptional, authentic Nordic cuisine. It’s basically the only spot in Philadelphia — or the entire region for that matter — where one can order pickled herring, a full gravlax spread, and taste unique Nordic spice combinations.Click here to find out how to cook your own Nordic food at home.
Having recently traveled to a Nordic country, I have to admit I wasn’t expecting the food back in the States to taste even remotely like the food I had on my trip. That said, Noord, did not disappoint.
Like any good Nordic restaurant
, it must serve exceptional Smørrebrød
, which is likely the ancestor of the trendy open-faced avocado toasts taking over your Instagram feed. Noord’s Smørrebrød (which changes daily) consists of three toasts, each generously covered with varying fish and topping combinations.
The day I dined at Noord, my toasts were topped with house-smoked white fish, smoked salmon mash, and an unbelievable pickled — yes, pickled — scallop. A spicy mustard aïoli was spread across the dish and accompanied by the crisp zing of house pickled cauliflower, cucumbers, and carrots. As if all of this were not enough, a heaping scoop of caviar was placed upon the center toast.
The next dish — the Mustard Soup with seared diver scallop
— is most certainly worth returning for. I was served a plump and tender seared fresh scallop rested atop a large tempura-like fried rye croûton. Surrounding the main attraction was a moat of pumpkin-colored mustard purée, which created a slight heat that contrasted nicely with the scallop-croûton tower. A generous dollop of delicate ruby red caviar garnished the dish, yet again, pairing well with the seared scallop.
Being the only one of its kind in Philadelphia, Noord’s on point representation of Nordic cuisine
will likely open the city to a whole new range of flavors and, with that, a whole new cultural experience.For more Philadelphia dining and travel news, click here.