When you’re in Paris for the first time, you visit the Eiffel Tower. And when you visit Gothenburg for the first time, you eat shellfish. The only problem is that if you want to do it in a nice restaurant, you can easily rack up a huge bill.
Sjöbaren is one of the few seafood joints in Gothenburg that does a very good job of walking the fine line between melt-in-the-mouth delicious and over-the-top expensive. Right in the middle of the historic Haga district, it’s a dimly lit and intimate place decked out with old maritime paraphernalia.
The various types of shellfish dished up here arrive from Gothenburg’s fishing port, just west of the city centre. They’re sold by weight and prepared using simple, no-nonsense recipes that let the flavours really come through. The fresh crayfish is cooked with garlic, for example, and the mussels are boiled in white wine with cream and parsley.
Apart from shellfish, there are fixed-price mains featuring cod and salmon (both smoked and cured). Our favourite is the house soup, cooked with big chunks of salmon and pollock, plus plenty of prawns and mussels.
If you want a full meal for two with drinks, anticipate spending around 1000 SEK in total – expensive, but good quality and far cheaper than some of the real top-end places in town. A quick tip: arrive at lunchtime on a weekday and you’ll find many of the same dishes are served up at cheaper prices.
Note that there’s another Sjöbaren across town at Lorensbergsgatan 14.
Haga Nygata 25
Mon–Thurs 11am–11pm, Fri 11am–midnight,
Sat noon–midnight, Sun 1pm–10pm
+46 317 119 780
Last updated: September 2014