FIKA spreads the Scandinavian lifestyle
Swedes lead a charmed life, from their unified design aesthetic down to their daily fika--an extended, leisurely coffee break.
If we're really adopting our Scandinavian friends' Socialist ways, as some say, we can test the waters in a more delicious fashion at our very own FIKA.
This Swedish café and espresso bar is already a Midtown institution (as seen by the daily queues), and has carried its ethos to a second location on Park Avenue, with plans to open a third by summer.
Streamlined and modern, FIKA authenticates the experience by flying in Arabica beans from the city of Karlstad and maintaining an all-day menu that tweaks the Swedish classics.
Stop in before work for a perfectly sweetened cinnamon bun ($3) and latte ($3.75), which is both punchy and smooth. At lunchtime, try the Överkalix sandwich ($10) with juniper-marinated salmon, arugula, cucumber and honey mustard rolled in soft flatbread.
You can stick with traditional standards like a bowl of Swedish meatballs ($12) or mix it up with the Göteborg sandwich ($9), a meatball hero with creamy beet salad. Save room for chocolatier Håkan Mårtensson's FIKA Choklad, a line of hand-rolled truffles ($1.50 to $2 each) made in limited-edition flavors (think blood orange and quail-egg sabayon), which are introduced on the first of each month.
FIKA Central Park South, 41 W. 58th St. (between Fifth and Sixth aves.); 212-832-0222 or fikanyc.com
FIKA Park Avenue, 407 Park Avenue South (between 28th & 29th streets); 646-649-5133 or fikanyc.com
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