Punk Royale Copenhagen Review is part of the Punxsutawney TPOL Trip Report.
Warning: Do not read this if you are going to Copenhagen.
I did not know before going to Copenhagen that there are so many Michelin star restaurants. A lover of street food, I had not cared for such fancy places due to their big prices and small portions. While perusing the vast list, I came across a restaurant named Punk Royale. The restaurant reviews said, “Don’t Google it!” which had me instantly intrigued.
I tried to make a reservation but I could not. I walked to the entrance and when I opened the door I saw smoke and heard my Acapulco anthem, Dance with the Devil, blasting (see Where to Party? New Year’s Eve). I knew this was the place for me. A young lad came by and I inquired if they had a table. He said he would have to ask the chef. He returned to say there was a table at 8PM and that they were sold out the following days.
I asked what kind of food it was and he said it was 16 plates with alcohol pairings. Then I wisely asked how much it cost. It was $200 per person. I told him to pencil me in because I was not sure I wanted to go all in.
I walked around the block and had a beer and deliberated. Is this worth the price for food? Do I care about Michelin? Why is this place so popular, so mysterious?
Since money is made to be spent, I decided to go for it. We arrived just before 8 and were told to wait outside with other guests. It felt like a scene from Eyes Wide Shut/Willy Wonka.
When the chocolate factory/orgy doors opened, we filed to our separate tables.
Our energetic waiter came by and started us out with a glass of complimentary champagne. He then prepped us for the ride by warning that the food and drinks come fast and we needed to be ready.
The rest is a magical haze that I will do my best to recall with the assistance of photos. Mind you, I am not versed in the terms of Michelin cuisine. Please excuse me for my simple descriptions of the food. And blame the alcohol for the blurry photos.
The first dish was waffles with a cheese caviar dip. Excellent. Then there was this tasty morsel.
This was followed by cocaine caviar and a shot of vodka. Caviar, yes. Vodka shots? No (see Grand Hotel Europe St. Petersburg: Vodka + Caviar + Birthplace of Beef Stroganoff).
As a refreshment, we were given a bottle of Tuborg. Then came my favorite treat, green curry oysters. Unfortunately, there were only two. Next up was tempura broccoli and mushrooms. It was as if the chef knew that I was in travel lockdown for 17 months (see The Lost & Found Year(s): COVID Trip Report), and he was making up for missed time by serving me food from all of my favorite international destinations.
This hypothesis was confirmed when the mussels came out next. After that, it was back to tastes from Asia.
I enjoyed another shot of liquor and what looked like a Lufthansa rubber duck. At one point, we were given a lobster treat served directly into our mouths.
If that was not enough, the next plate came with a side of Round-Up. This was followed by the waiter ashing in our food, which was surprisingly delicious.
At the intermission, I went to the bathroom. There was no emergency.
The food kept rolling in. I don’t remember what was served exactly because the drinks did not stop. I do recall that my least favorite white wine, chardonnay, was not so terrible and that the pinot noir was fantastic.
Dessert was also served with a shot of limoncello, another throwback to my days on the international circuit (see Amalfi Coast: A Beautiful Tourist Trap).
Then came time for the coffee. I could not believe that after all this luxury and splendid food and drink, the only coffee they had was from the pot. I made sure to tell the waiter about this, who, at this point, had sold his shirt to one of the girls at his other table.
In addition to being delighted by food, the experience also includes plenty of audience participation. This ranges from jokes with the waiter to impromptu dance to whatever club or Motown hits blare through the speaker.
Like all good binges, this party had to come to an end. But before it did, I asked how often they change the menu. Answer: every 3 months. I asked if it gets exhausting working here and having to put on this show for each guest. Answer: yes but it is worth it. Since part of the experience is heavy interaction with guests, it takes the right kind of personality to be up for these shifts day in and day out. Finally, I asked if they had regulars who come in for the same menu. To my surprise, they do have people who come every few weeks. That was weird to hear.
While I cannot recall everything I ate, I do know all of it was spectacular and properly portioned.
I am known for combing alcohol. If you look at my IG posts, you’ll see photos of cocktails alongside beer alongside champagne. I can, more or less, handle it. However, I am not sure that the average person will be able to walk after this experience.
The experience would not work without an energetic, lively staff. I don’t know what the turnover is in a place like this, but you’d have to be a peloton-esque happy person to work here.
One & Done
This is a one-and-done experience. From what I remember, I don’t want to tarnish that perfect, hazy memory.
And that was my first Michelin restaurant experience.
TPOL’s TIP: The address is Dronningens Tværgade 10, 1302 København, Denmark. But if you’re reading this then you did not heed my warning and have ruined the experience should you go.