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Photo: Rasmus Flindt Pedersen/visitdenmark

Food & Drink

Communal dining – meet Copenhageners

Many Nordic restaurants recently gained Michelin recognition. But one of the fastest growing trends on the Copenhagen restaurant scene is a far cry from fine dining. Cheap eats and sustainable communal dining have namely become hot – and everyone is invited.

The contemporary version of cheap eat cuisine is proving popular, and more and more Cheap Eats are appearing in the Danish capital. The concept is to eat cheap but delicious food in an informal setting, in the company of others. You may not know your neighbor or the person sitting opposite, but when you share a meal and start talking with someone you didn’t know before, you’re helping to create new communities, entirely analog and with real people. 

Everyone eats the same food, which means the price can be kept down and with very little waste. Some venues have communal dining every day, others organize this once a week.

Communal dining appeals to young and old, hipsters, families with children and ex-pats, plus it’s a brilliant way to meet local people. 

Here are five good venues, where you can sample communal dining in Copenhagen:

Absalon. Photo: Absalon

Absalon

Folkehuset Absalon on Vesterbro hosts one of the most popular cheap eats in the city. Lovely people of all ages sit down here to eat together every day and share the dish of the day from communal trays. The food is improbably delicious, and for about Dkr50, you can eat your fill of the dish of the day and home-baked bread. Tap water is available free, but you can also buy beer, wine and soft drinks at the bar, if you want to make the meal more festive. There’s always a vegetarian version of the dish of the day, and it’s vegetarian day on Mondays and Wednesdays. On Fridays, you can get two dishes for Dkr100, plus a DJ, disco lights etc., after dining. Children under 3 eat free.

Absalon

Sønder Boulevard 73, København V

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Tickets are sold online and on the door from 5pm.

Photo: Kraftwerkets Folkekøkken

Vegan in Valby

Every Tuesday at 6pm, Kulturhuset Kraftwerket in Valby hosts a popular vegan cheap eat, where you can eat your fill for a paltry Dkr25. The cash only tickets go on sale at the venue from 6pm until they’re all sold. Free tap water is provided at the tables, but you can also buy beer and soft drinks in Underwerket, the cellar bar. The food is delicious and ridiculously cheap, but in return you must wash and dry your plate afterwards.

Kraftwerket

Valgårdsvej 2, Valby

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Tirsdag kl 18

Folkekøkken på Støberiet/Kapelvej 44

You can find Nørrebro’s version of a cheap eat at the Støberiet culture center every Tuesday from 5pm until the food runs out. They serve everything from fillet of pollock with spinach to tartlets and rib of beef with mashed potato. The menu changes weekly and there's also always a vegetarian option.

Støberiet

Kapelvej 44, København N

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The food costs Dkr50 for adults and Dkr25 for children.

Photo: Madglad

Madglad

Madglad is a cozy cheap eat on Eskildsgade in Vesterbro, that serves home-made meals including a salad buffet and bread each evening for Dkr50. You sit at small, cozy tables in a relaxed and delightful venue which also has a play corner for guests with young children. They serve a meat or vegetarian option that are both really delicious. Tap water is readily available and you can buy dessert and coffee for a modest amount.

Madglads Cafeteria

Eskildsgade 13, København V

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Food is served from 4.30 to 8.30pm.

Communal dining at KU:BE. Foto: Lise Hannibal

Child friendly communal dining at KU:BE

KU:BE stands for Kultur- og Bevægelse (Culture and Movement), and houses everything from play areas, dancing and gymnastics to office communities, library and Glad Café, where the food is prepared by professional chefs, some with disabilities. They host communal dining every Wednesday at 5.30pm, where they serve generous helpings of lovely food, including a vegetarian version. You can buy wine, beer and soft drinks etc., at the bar. They charge Dkr79 for adults and Dkr49 for children. The play areas stay open late (until 7.30pm), so children can go off and play after eating.

KU:BE

Dirch Passers Allé 4, Frederiksberg

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Every Wednesday at 5.30pm.

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