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Hurtigruten signs celebrity chef to create ‘Norway’s Coastal Kitchen’

March 17, 2014 Cruise No Comments Email Email

Hurtigruten has taken on a celebrated Norwegian food expert, to create even more unique and authentic culinary experiences, worthy of the world’s most beautiful sea voyage.

Andreas Viestad will be helping to develop new restaurant and café concepts on all eleven of the ships that sail along the Norwegian coast, with a focus on local food of the highest quality.

Hurtigruten’s food project goes by the title of ‘Norway’s Coastal Kitchen’ and is part of its strategy to further highlight the uniqueness of the voyages. Menus will be developed with ingredients and themes that reflect the waters and areas that the ships sail through. To add to the culinary experience, telling the story of the local specialities will be a key aspect of Viestad’s work.

The signing is the next stage in an on-going project that has already seen the on-board menu being tailored to seasonal delicacies of the regions visited. More-fun-in-the-Philippines_250X250px

More than 80% of the food and drink served on the ships is produced in Norway, and now the company is set to further increase that figure. Last summer Hurtigruten announced plans to take on more local food suppliers, and 200 businesses responded, offering 500 different products.

A brand new Spring ‘Arctic Awakening’ menu is launching in April, with much of this local produce taking pride of place. For example passengers will enjoy cured leg of lamb from Hellesylt, a town near the Geirangerfjord; baked Arctic char from the Sigerfjord near Vesterålen, with gulløye potatoes from Tromsø; or roast reindeer from Finnmark.

Other specialities include sea buckthorn and aquavit ice cream produced by the Gangstad Gårdsysteri dairy in Nord-Trøndelag or a fresh organic cheese hailing from the Grøndalen farm, served with a berry compote. There is no shortage of traditional Norwegian treats on the menu, including kvæfjordkake, a special cake made of meringue, vanilla cream and almonds, which can trace its origins to a small café in Harstad in Vesterålen.

Hurtigruten has also been identifying smaller suppliers along the coast with whom it would like to work, and through a partnership with Innovation Norway & the Norwegian Government is helping them grow their business enough to be able to supply the ships on a regular basis.

“I’ve spent a lot of time on Hurtigruten, as a tourist and when filming my TV programmes. Now I’m very pleased to be involved in making one of Norway’s strongest brands even better”, says Andreas Viestad.

Viestad has spent many years bringing modern Norwegian cuisine to local and international audiences, not least through the TV series ‘New Scandinavian Cooking’ and ‘En bit av Norge’.

“Andreas Viestad is one of Norway’s leading food ambassadors, and will be extremely useful to us in our work on improving the quality of the food served on board. We’re confident this will reinforce Hurtigruten’s position as an increasingly unique product in an industry that could be considered rather conformist,” says CEO Daniel Skjeldam.

“If guests want to experience genuine, modern and authentic Norwegian food, they need to travel with Hurtigruten. Our passengers will be able to enjoy fresh Arctic char delivered directly on board, then prepared and served just a few hours later. And as part of their meal, they will also be served the story of the food on their plate, the suppliers, the landscape and the waters we are sailing through, giving them a totally unique experience,” explains Skjeldam.

For more information email Discover the World on hurtigruten@discovertheworld.com.au  or call 1800 OCEANS (1800 623 267).

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