From the White Guide Nordic 2018:
- Address: Ivan Bjørndals Gate 25, 0472 Oslo
- Phone: +47 930 28 888
- Web: http://www.astraloslo.com
- Seats: 70
- Opening Hours: Tue-Sat 5 PM-12 AM. Kitchen open until 10 PM.
Down by the river
Astral is housed in an old cooperage on the bank of the Akerselva River at Lilleborg, an old factory complex which used to produce vinegar, soap and wallpaper glue. Inside the building is a glorious space with high ceilings, red brick walls, big arched factory windows, and wooden design furniture. This is a large restaurant and on our visit it is only half-filled with diners ranging from couples on their second date to groups of friends starting their night out with a meal. After conferring with the waiter we go for a sparkling Austrian wine to go with the first part of the meal. His service is professional, friendly and earnest. The food is modern Nordic. Although the first snack on the table looks like pita bread with hummus, the bread is house-baked and flame-grilled, and the hummus isn’t hummus – it’s a purée of dried local green peas. A snack of lingonberries, sour cream and grated cured reindeer meat gives us a taste of the mountains, while crispy rye biscuits with a duck liver mousse are an earthy treat. A poached egg with ramson broth and pickled celeriac is nicely balanced, as is a dish of white asparagus, butter sauce, chewy dulse seaweed and toasted almonds. The meal’s only let-down is an dish of raw marinated mackerel with not enough seasoning and a skin that’s hard to chew. The disappointment is soon forgotten, however, because the desserts are stunning: first up is a combination of rhubarb and celery with dried yoghurt, a perfect balance of sweetness and acidity that's very refreshing. The second dessert is nearly as good – an earthy Jerusalem artichoke ice cream with brown cheese that leaves us feeling mellow and relaxed, satisfied but not stuffed...
To read the whole review go to Buy The White Guide Nordic 2018.