(photo from around 9pm at night in Sweden)
On Sunday, our second day in Stockholm, I must admit we slept quite late again. We awoke to torrential rains outside our window, so took our time before heading out.
Eventually, the rain slowed and we headed out by about 1:30. We felt a bit guilty wasting so much time, but there was not much to do in a downpour.
We explored the shopping streets near the central station for a bit before, of course, getting hungry. We walked over the bridge to Gamla Stan hoping for a falafel sandwich from a little place on a tiny side street. But, Jerusalem Kebab was tiny itself with no seats - and more importantly no rest room. Walking had baby boy resting low on my bladder and I wasn't about to eat standing up without relieving the pressure.
We decided instead to stop for a bar snack at O'Connors Irish pub. I didn't expect much, but the order of potato skins was actually pretty yummy - and huge. I expected a few soggy wedges, but instead it was a basket full of very crispy slices with sides of sour cream and sweet chili sauce. No need for lunch then. Only ice cream.
Along the main tourist street in the old city are several ice cream shops. We picked one of the larger places with a low window sill to rest on. Many of the ice cream shops had girls in the window pressing waffle cones, which gave the air a yummy fresh-baked smell.
There were so many flavor choices. The more interesting being black licorice (black ice cream??) and (my husband's favorite) saffron, which tasted like the Indian milk/rice pudding kir.
I stuck with standard strawberry and blueberry, which were good. The texture was a little more air-whipped and creamy than we are used to with our prized American Ben and Jerry's.
The snacking didn't stop there, since we decided to return after a siesta for a dinner of tapas. The sun was still shining as we left for dinner around 9pm.
Tabac tapas bar had a lot of good vegetarian choices. Pan con tomate was a sub-par garlic bread with too little pureed tomato spread in. But the creamy saffron rice croquettes and honey-baked goat cheese were tops. Thick goat cheese wrapped in cold sweet red pepper was refreshing. Bruschetta with pickley caramelized red onions and stiff manchego cheese was acceptable but struck me as a less impressive texture/flavor combo. All together a decent meal and a successful snacking day. We returned from dinner by 11:15pm, just as twilight was setting in.
My favorite resto-culture point so far is that the bars tend to have non-alcohol choices so us preggers can feel like part of the club. I'm not that into soda, so a choice of no-alcohol cider, cocktail, wine or beer is appreciated for the first time in my life. Virgin wine does taste less like wine, however, and more like a dry grape juice. Oh well!
So far there have been no major disappointments on our journey. The people are pleasant, the transport is user-friendly, and generally Stockholm seems well-organized and streamlined.
Now off to Norway, to visit Oslo!
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