Can you ever get enough of Christmas? In London, very often the answer is yes. Packed Christmas markets with over-priced, lukewarm mulled wine and tourists shoving you away to get a picture in front of pretend picturesque chalets make you wish for the holidays were already over. But there’s a tiny Swedish café just off the hectic Brick Lane that’ll make you forget all that, helping you enjoy a real Swedish Christmas feast in a cosy, small space smelling of cinnamon and spice. That place is Fika in Brick Lane.
In Sweden, Fika (pronounced fee-ka) is a coffee break where people gather to have a cup of coffee or tea and a few nibbles. Fika is such an important part of Swedish life that it’s both a verb and a noun. I had already tried the Brick Lane café’s incredible cinnamon buns, so I couldn’t help but come back for their “Jultallrik”, the Christmas meal.
Christmas at Fika is the cosiest meal you’ll ever get. With its red and white understated decor and its tiny tables, Fika is more of a chilled hangout than a huge supper club dining experience. “Jultallrik” starts with some scrumptious gingerbread crackers accompanied by a brie-like cheese and mulled wine to fill with raisins and almonds.
For a main we had a selection of typical Swedish treats such as beetroot, meatballs, honey glazed ham, potted herring, home cured dill gravad lax and reindeer sausage.
“Jultallrik” finished in style with a selection of tiny Swedish chocolate cakes, some made with orange, some with chilli, some with coffee and some with cinnamon.
If you’re after a cosy, healthy and heart-warming Christmas feast, Fika London is your best bet. Check it out before it’s too late!
161 Brick Lane
Jule at Fika runs until 23rd December. Tickets are available through Billetto.
Pictures: Fika, Carolina Are