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9 cafes in Stockholm

In Stockholm there’s a café on nearly every counter, a total of 502 in the Swedish capital. And each one strives to offer the best coffee and food, including pastries, sandwiches, and even whole brunches and lunches. They also vie with each other to display the most original concept and décor.

In Colour - Vurma Kafé (Gastrikegatan, 2)

You wouldn’t be surprised to see Frida Kahlo, Sara Montiel or Lola Flores flouncing through the door of this cathedral of Kitsch, with its deep red and blue walls, and colourful plastic flowers in every available spot –including the waitresses’ hair–where every chair and velvet cushion is a different colour and pattern. The initial psychedelic sensation quickly subsides, and the visitor realises that there’s a lot to like in the Vurma. Much to be prized is the organic milk accompanying a hot sandwich combining the unlikeliest ingredients; but all surprisingly delicious. Our favourites are the goat cheese with apples, honey, and walnuts, and the spicy hummus.

Perfect Chaos – String (Nytorgsgatan 38)

The is a café that doubles as an antique shop`. Everything is for sale –the furniture, the table linen, glassware, lamps, and many decorative items. But it is most famous for its unspeakably delicious red fruit strudel drowned in vanilla sauce. The best place to drink your coffee, which is served in thermos jugs, is at the high table by the window where you can watch the hipsters parading through the ultramodern Söderman district. For just eight euros you can order a Sunday brunch including a hot drink, fruit juice, bread, cheese, yoghurt, a crêpe, fresh fruit, egg and even ice cream!

Milky Coffee and a Newspaper - Saturnus (Eriksbergsgatan, 6)

Local and foreign newspapers, huge, rich pastries (one cinnamon band can be shared by at least two or three people), and an exquisite café au lait served in one of Stockholm’s largest cups. It’s a cosmopolitan and cordial setting, and a great place to meet and chat with friends. The menu includes sandwiches and salads made with recipes “from everywhere”, says the owner. Noteworthy among the fare are the Cuban sandwich of cured pork loin with barbecue sauce, the Ruben pastrami, the milkshake made with fresh fruit, and the cheesecake with macadamia nuts. Average cost per person: 12 euros.

In the Market - Roberto (Östermalmstorg, 114)

No visitor to Stockholm should miss the luxurious covered Östermalms Saluhall selling local gourmet products including reindeer specialities, salmon, shellfish, cheese, and cakes. Near the entrance is the Café Roberto, a great place to catch your breath whilst touring the city on foot.

Following the Footsteps of Mikael Blomkvist – Melquwist (Hornsgatan, 78)

One of Stockholm’s top-ranked cafés is the site at which Mikael Blomkvist, the hero of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium trilogy, solved a mystery or two with the help of Lisbeth Salander. Regular customers tend to choose the full breakfast packages, which includes fresh fruit juice, a hot drink, and a hot sandwich (try the egg and mozzarella!) for 11 euros. Another appealing feature of the Melquwist is its outdoor terrace where blankets and stoves protect guests from the winter temperatures.

Shop and Café – Taverna (Hornsgatan, 5)

Unabashedly arty and contemporary, this café features a long, long wall adorned with sober black graffiti, plus a delicatessen selling a large variety of international foods, a pork butcher’s, and a bakery. There are strategically placed benches for visitors who want to enjoy a coffee on the spot.

The Infallible Classic - Vete-Katten (Kungsgatan, 55)

In business since the beginning of the 20th century, this is a classic and elegant tea room frequented by many generations of people who come to sample the delicious bread and traditional pastries, such as semla (a brioche filled with almond cream) or the cinnamon tolls made with extra sugar and butter, which are best with a big cup of steaming black coffee. The delicious baking aromas envelope the Vete-Katten and make it easy to find – just follow your nose!

Rock & Cakes - Café Fatölgen (Götgatan, 12)

The is a curious glam-rock café with enormous crystal chandeliers, rock posters, and floral wallpaper. At five euros per huge, tempting slice, the 12 kinds of cake are worth every cent and constitute the speciality of the house. Resistance is futile!

Simply Magic - Rosendals Kafé (Rosendalsterrassen, 12)

It’s the city’s most magical spot to for having a coffee, located inside a greenhouse crowded with plants, which in turn stands in a huge garden thronged with apple trees where the hip crowd can sit outdoors in the summer. You can’t help loving the bucolic atmosphere, where you can order 100% organic food grown in the garden. The Rosendals specialities are the soups, the carrot cake, and the pastries made with flowers from the garden –try the rose and nettles cakes! 

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