At Det Hvide Lam – Copenhagen’s oldest Værtshus (equivalent to the Portuguese Tascas) – one of the classic lunch items in the late 60’ies and early 70’ies was a tin of sardines casually wrapped in tin foil and served with a bunch of parsley, slices of lemon and rye bread.
One of my childhood’s favorite lunch dishes… it still is 🙂
So can you imagine how happy I got when our good friend & super chef Claus ‘Karmaman’ Jørgensen called us 2 years ago:
Thomas…. can you bring a lot of sardine samples next time you come to Copenhagen?
Claus wanted to serve sardines and other tinned fish items from Portugal in his new restaurant Karmaman Foodmarket in Copenhagen.
Of course we brought what he wanted. And of course we shopped most of the sardines and other tins at Conserveira de Lisboa. The legendary Tinned Fish shop in down town Lisbon – and the shop The New York Times featured a few days ago.
With World War II looming, the owners of a little grocery store in Lisbon made two big decisions.
First, they decided to specialize in tinned fish, which would be easier to stock and export than a wider range of groceries — and, in a move that was rather rare at the time, they began to register their own brands.
“A bet they made 86 years ago really paid off,” says Tiago Cabral Ferreira, whose grandfather was one of the initial owners of Conserveira de Lisboa, which still, to this day, sells only tinned fish. Without such forward thinking, the shop would likely be long gone.
Read Alex Ronan’s storie about Conserveira de Lisoba in The New York Times
Portuguese Tinned fish is so much more than ‘just’ sardines
We will also have a selection of tinned sardines (and a few other tinned items) on our Lounge menu.
And we will present our selection the same decorative way as Claus do it in his restaurant: As a big colorful square on the wall where the guests can help themselves.
And we’re also pretty sure that Claus will visit our lounge as he has done a lot of times in Kathmandu.
Hope this little Tinned Fish Post will inspire a lot of travelers to investigate the treasures of tinned fish – eat some of them while you’re in Lisbon and hopefully bring a lot with you back home as souvenirs for friends and family.