The Chaine in Denmark had managed, through good connections, to get a reservation at Henne Kirkeby Kro (Henne Kirkeby Inn) at the popular Chef's Table.
Chef at the Inn is Maitre Rôtisseur Paul Cunningham. Paul was born and trained as a Chef in England, but moved to Denmark in 1994. He started to work at Søllerød Kro (Søllerød Inn) as a fish cook – later as head chef. He has also worked at Formel B, Coquus and Plaze before he started his own place "The Paul" in Tivoli. "The Paul received a Michelin star after just 9 months and he really became a celebrity chef, cooking for Queen Margrethe, Bill Clinton and Helena Christensen among others.
With success came stress, and in 2011 he decided to close down "The Paul" and move far away from Copenhagen – to the Inn in Henne Kirkeby. Paul had now a new philosophy : Iife and work should be fun , so when he hires people he looks not just at their qualifications (which though must be high) but also people where there is good chemistry. It requires team spirit and good mood to make all the work be perfect. In the kitchen there is loud music, as Paul like to work to music. When we arrived we could, through the open windows in the garden, hear they were playing Queen and Dire Straits. In that environment the Inn has been awarded 2 Michelin Stars, so we were extremely excited about what we could expect, knowing that it would be fantastic.
We were greeted at the door and kindly led to the room with the Chefs Table, located next to the Kitchen, with its windows to the kitchen, so we could follow the progress (and we hardly noticed the music even when the door was open). Our sommelier, Pernille Malec, who had also worked at "The Paul", but moved together with Paul to Henne, greeted us with Champagne and guided us through the menu, together with our head waiter Maria Mohr, during the evening. When Paul had time, he also popped in and told us in depth about the next dish. All the presentations were very professional, and we could feel that they really knew their subject, it was not just a stripe they had learned.
Oysters from Sild & Henne neck ham
Crumpet with chicken liver parfait & cherries
Bruchetta with tomato & lardo
N.V. Brut, Blanc de Blancs, Grand Cru Simon-Selosse, Champaigne, France
"Han re-dux 18" bread, with fresh garden butter
Scallops, garden carrots, truffle & Sauternes sauce
2016 Riesling, Höhenflug, Dürkheimer Spielberg, Hensel, Pfalz, Germany
Steamed cod. Grilled baby gem lettuce & salted lemon.
2015 Beaune 1. cru "Montrevenots", J.M. Boillot, Bourgogne France
Label Rouge guinea fowl with corn & mushrooms (served in 2 servings)
2015 Pinot Noir, Beaux Frères, Willamette Valley, Oregon, USA
Whole roasted French butter HBT
1970 Riveyrac, Riversaltes, France
Swiss cheese with walnuts, truffles and Henne honey
La Bota De Manzenilla, Equipo Navazos, Spanien
Peach Dame Nellie Melba - Savoy Hotel 1900'ish
2015 Recioto de Soave "Arzimo", La Cappucina, Veneto, Italy
Macerated cherries & Marcona almond sorbet
10 years Pineau des Charentes, Vieille Réserve Ruby, Château de Beaulon, Cognac, France
Strawberry & mint pâte de fruits
English country fudge
Tea and coffee
The "French Butter" (Foie Gras) serving was out of this world – it was a big wooden plate – 1.5x1 meter where a big portion of herbs, covering 5 whole fried livers, was burnt halfway down and served by the chef himself, cut out and covered with a fresh fruit sauce.
After the dinner we had the traditional line up of the staff from the kitchen and the service (they were more than us) and our Bailli Délégué Jørgen Krenk could not find words to express his joy of the experience we have witnessed. So to standing applause they were all awarded the Danish service pin for first class service.
Fun Facts, we first were given knives only at the main course. Until then it was all hand food or fork and spoon.
The champagne was sponsored by Excellent Wines, and Ken Storkøkken was co-sponsor with a very nice gift for all when we left.