I know nothing about Nordic cuisine beyond gravlax, I must admit. A new friend of mine among our group on Golden Square mentioned visiting Norway for a month, and that tipped off a trip to Nordic Bakery just steps away.
The display of small open-faced sandwiches and desserts were enticing- ESPECIALLY the desserts. All of the sweets looked tasty; I wish I took each pastry home and indulge.
Because I *am* trying to maintain my weight, I limited myself to a Nordic cinnamon roll instead. Yum. The taste reminded me of chimney cakes from Kurtosh, a popular dessert franchise in Sydney. Nordic Bakery's cinnamon roll looks like a croissant than the traditional American cinnamon rolls I'm used to, but I enjoyed it.
My order was a quick take-out, so I can't say much for the ambiance of the place, though I had good first impressions (good ol' minimal, modern Nordic design).
Would love to return again!
this place was so blahhhh. so disappointing. maybe i'm just a coffee snob after living in Italy but it wasn't even good for a coffee shop. the cinnamon bun was a complete waste too, maybe i got an old batch that was sitting there all day since there were only 2 on the table left. but of course the lady brought out a new fresh batch of buns after i was trying to chew on my super hard cinnamon bun. ugh i'd like to give this place another try but just don't think it's worth it.
i miss italian coffee!
I didn't have a typical experience at Nordic Bakery. Well I hope I didn't. Unless all you other peeps who said how great it was missed out the part about the constant beeping?!?
We needed somewhere to hang whilst waiting for a table at Mildred's that wasn't a bar, so armed with my yelp app I seized the opportunity to steer the gang here and suss it out.
The place is a poster child for Scandi starkness and chic, all clean lines and wooden tones. But before I could take this in (or enjoy the coffee/baking smells) I was distracted by an alarm going off. The slightly embarrassed girl at the counter guessed our first question and blurted out, 'Yeahhh *beep* that alarm *beep* is going to keep *beep* going off *beep*...' (annoying just reading that, right?!).
It was slightly too loud to easily ignore but the other people in there were doing their best and we decided it was probably manageable for half an hour. Ok yeah - it was the thought of a cinnamon bun that swung it ;)
The barista looked relieved and took good care of us - I couldn't help but feel sorry for her. Particularly halfway through our visit when the beep cranked up to a fully-fledged *EEEEEEE* as if the main fire alarm had just gone off, and she had to run over to a box on the wall to hush it back to beeping levels.
We ended up starting dinner in reverse, as my mates ordered coffees and teas and I got a cinnamon bun. I fully intended to keep it for dessert and eat it after dinner like a sensible girl, honest. But then the bag was all warm in my hand... and delicious-smelling... so I thought I better have a bite to try it warm. Or maybe ten bites as it turned out. You know, to really be sure.
I liked the layers inside and thought it was nice enough, but the outside was a little hard and found the inside quite dry. Perhaps with an hour to closing they weren't as fresh as earlier in the day? I'd be willing to go back and try another (or something else from the counter of yumminess) with a coffee next time.
Think it's a cool place for a short stop or coffee date, but it's not a cosy-up-and-while-away-the-hours kinda place. Hopefully they've sorted out the alarm issues too - it was pretty unsettling but as ever sometimes these things just can't be helped and it's more about how they deal with them. Our smiley waitress in the face of adversity was enough for me to give it a second chance :)
The cafe is a little more sterile-looking than the other coffee shops that I've visited in London, and my review might be biased as I am not a fan of cinnamon buns in general. With that said, I was not a fan of Nordic Bakery's cinnamon bun, which I found quite dry. I also tried their oatmeal cookie, which I found better than the bun, but it wasn't out-of-this-world delicious.
Perhaps this is a sign that I might not like Scandinavian pastries.
If you can walk past this and not follow the smell in you've a lot more will power than I do.
Coffee and cinnamon buns are always on point and it's a nice little time out from the busy streets around it. That said, seats are hard to come by on the weekends as you might expect.
Tranquil and warm. Unique delicacies that you can't get elsewhere. Always a treat to hide here from the hustle and bustle of central London and the cold and rain.
This cafe has single handedly made me book flights to Scandinavia. If it the coffee and treats are as good as here, my trip will be great.
Well well well, I had very high expectations of this place I have to admit as it had been recommended numerous times by foodie friends. So one morning I decided to stop by and finally try one of their cinnamon bun with a latte.
Latte: perfect. Great amount of coffee. Foamy. Nothing to say
Bun: I was drooling over the counter while waiting in line. I arrived at 830am and it was not that busy but with one person serving it took what seemed forever. The buns looked fresh, right out of the oven. From the outside it could pass for a chocolate croissant. £2.40 for a bun is a decent price. Especially because it is big. Very filling. However I was disappointed because it was not warm and it was a bit dry (lot of dough). Did not seem fresh. Super sugary and crispy but I expected a whoa moment. And it did not happen.
In a nutshell: I dreamed of the cinnamon bun before I had tried it. Do not dream about it anymore
Have you ever been to Scandinavia? No? Then it's time you try at least some culinary treats. If you've been, I'm almost sure you tried and now miss the cinnamon swirls! When i first discovered the Nordic Bakery i had to go there immediately, even tough i was still not hungry. But it was worth it. since then I've been quite a few times.
Be aware that this Nordic Bakery is small and really popular, so I never found a place to sit right away. Either you wait or you take it with you.
I don't think the atmosphere is any special, but it's reduced to the max and very spartanic - so typical for Nordic style.
They sell really awesome cinnamon swirls and other pastries. I even experienced their offer varies a little. Besides the sweets they sell the typical rye bread which also tastes very good. You can buy it plain or prefilled with for example salmon, cheese, ham and so on...
Also cool - get the stuff to go and sit at golden square.
£7 for two tiny coffees and a cinnamon roll.
Let me have that sink in with you for a minute.
The coffees were ok, made with individual drip cones; that was a cute touch, but it didn't make for significantly better coffee (pro tip: it won't when the water is too hot and your grind is set for the espresso). And starting off my day with 6oz of coffee felt like a joke.
The cinnamon roll was... ok. The exterior was a little dry, like it'd been in the oven a few minutes too long; I've never had a Scandinavian take on a cinnamon roll before so, by all means, this could be how they're meant to be done, in which case, you know where to get your fix! I found the glaze too sticky, the exterior too dry, and the inner layers lacking a satisfying yeast-dough flavour to balance out the surprisingly mild cinnamon.
The place was totally silent (no music, barely any conversation), which is actually sort of nice if you're sitting in a corner and trying to wake up, but kinda creepy walking into on a misty morning--like you've just stepped into your neighbour's and caught them in their nighties, and everyone's just feeling awkward about things.
I'm half-tempted to come back for the nice-looking sandwiches, but £7 for two tiny "only ok" coffees and an "only ok" cinnamon roll still leaves me feeling a bit butthurt.
In any long-term relationship, there inevitably comes a point when the honeymoon period reaches its end. The way she laughs with a little snort is no longer adorable, her consistent habit of forgetting where she put the house keys is no longer cutely absent-minded, the way she makes you order her a sex on the beach when you're at a bar with your rugby mates is no longer laughable and charming. It's the little things that start to become major irritants. This very milestone has just been crossed in my love affair with Nordic Bakery.
Sitting here right now, and two annoyances/inconveniences that I've never noticed before come to mind:
1) Ice queen/aloof servers. Brr.
2) No wifi. I've just spent 8 quid on pastries, and I can't easily sit here, enjoy my cinnamon bun, and get some work done. This should be illegal.
I still love you, NB, but we may need to spend some time away from each other for a bit. You know, just to keep our sanity and everything. To 'find ourselves.'
Visiting the Bakery is like stepping through a magic door to Helsinki.
Wafts of cardamon, cinnamon and espresso in the air, minimalst woody decor, muted acoustics.
My americano was fab, and the cinnamon buns are exactly as I remember them in taste and texture. Admittedly, I'm not enough of a Korvapuusti-purist to take sides in the melted vs. granular sugar coating debate. Next time I'll stop for lunch and try the Karelian pies and finnish-rye sandwiches.
An authentic Nordic coffee-shop experience that tickles all five senses and really stands out against the mainly big-chain offering of central London.
Dearest Nordic Bakery,
I'd like to let you know that your cinnamon buns have reduced Brinda and I to crack addicts. I'm not even joking. Because of your buns, I have been reduced to a snivelling wreck on the train searching for leftover crumbs and smelling my shirt for that amazing cinnamon smell that still lingers. The other passengers think I'm crazy.
But I don't regret ordering those pillowy spiced goodness which its crispy sexy layered top on the outside and soft and warm and comforting. It was a food orgasm. I'm already having withdrawal symptons.
(I found a crumb on my t shirt a few hours later, it dropped on the floor, I cried.)
If anyone else would like to join my cinnamon buns anonymous where we will be getting over our addiction by, uhm, eating more of it. Please let me know.
P.S: Following Brinda's review, I will not admit to strategically planning anything. That being said, I will not say I didn't strategically plan it either.
Stopped by on a Saturday afternoon with a few friends. I was told this place is usually packed and are famous for their cinnamon buns... So here we were!
I'm not by any means a cinnamon bun connoisseur (only ever had Cinnabon, and my own freshly baked ones!), this left us slightly disappointed. Maybe it's because we didn't get them fresh out of the oven?
It was a bit dry on the outer 2 layers, but when you get to the middle, it seems quite dense and stuck to my teeth a bit. Perhaps slightly undercooked (I've posted a picture)? Or maybe this is how it's supposed to be? I'm not entirely sure!! Anyhow, with all the great ratings, I would come back and give the bun another try, only if it's fresh.
Flavor-wise: no complaints, nice and cinnamonny, not overly sweet and didn't need a layer of creamy icing on it.
Their hot chocolate was Nice, not to rich, just the right amount of sweetness. Will be back!
Ok, so I learned I was wrong, there is a bakery in this one as well. Perhaps I've always just come at the wrong time when the baked goods were not as fresh as they would have been coming right out of the oven. I'll have to give them another shot!
The shortest and easiest review I've ever had to write.
A must try place. The best giant Mochas in London in a great location within a modern Swedish setting. The cinnamon rolls are to die for.
Go go go!
You have not lived until you have tasted a warm cinnamon bun from the Nordic Bakery. I have no idea how they make it but it consists of layers of glorious cinnamon sandwiched into rolls of sweet pastry into one of the most delicious treats in all of London. As you sink your teeth into the bun in the wooden panelled surrounds of Nordic Bakery I am immediately transported off to my idea of what life in Scandinavia must be like.
What's more, the Nordic Bakery is not just about these buns. The coffee is well made, if not at the level of some of London's new wave coffee bars, and the savoury snacks are tasty as well. I enjoyed gravlax served on a disc of dense dark rye - a moment of pleasure which almost equalled that provided by those fabulous buns.
Bubbling buttery buns.
Icing sugar and baked apple.
Freshly ground coffee.
If the staff were a little less sullen I would be in Nordic pastry heaven.
I must say I was disappointed. I've dreamed about these buns. When I walked in I had a nasal orgasm . And I was lucky that I got there as a fresh batch was coming out of the oven. However the buns are really dense and heavy and bready--I imagined them to be light and steaming. I just wasn't sold.
(I do regret having tea and not trying the allegedly awesome coffee--so things might change in terms of stars)
It is a nice interior and good vibe and this place was happening on a random Tuesday afternoon.
Might need to try a cake next time.
Thank you Thomas W! This place was totally worth a visit. Filter coffee to my hearts content and fresh cinnamon buns to fill my greedy little gob with.
So if this place is so wonderful why only 4 stars? Well I have to say that the portion of attitude that got served with my salmon rye bread snack thing and coffee was a little to sharpe for first thing in the morning. Yes of course I told you black coffee, I never have milk in coffee, why would I tell you to put milk in it if I never have it that way. Also, why is this such a problem? I bet this happens all the time, you work in a coffee shop! Breathe...
Right so apart from the Nordic Ice Maiden that served me this place is perfect. It has a bright open seating area that means you can work happily there for a few hours, they have a loo (as always, an important element in any coffee shop), they have a park opposite so you can sit out and enjoy your treats, so all in all its a little bit wonderful. Shame about the price tag on food and service.
A good cinnamon roll is hard to find. I came here to check out their Cinnamon Rolls. Just how good were they?
Pretty darn good. I'd say.
Sweet but not so much that it over powers the stronger cinnamon taste.
Rolled with many layers yelp.co.uk/biz_photos/Sh… to allow for maximum sugar and cinnamon to dough ratio.
The interior is too starkly plain and quiet for me. Like someone's dull interpretation of Ikea. I'll trade the plain austerity of the bakery for the fresh air across the street in Golden Square.
The roll was still warm at 10:30am.
It was a good morning =)
I have to say, the filter coffee was pretty fabulous.
A die-hard Monmouth Coffee fan, I might just have found a worthy contender in the coffee shop battle for my affections. Sure, there's only one bean and roast available, but whatever it is, it is smooth and satisfying (You know, they probably get it from Monmouth. This seems to be the vogue thing to do in London coffee shops). It's hard to find real filter coffee in this town, overrun as it is with espresso houses that will either serve you up an americano or give you some filter coffee that's been sitting in an insulated coffee dispenser for god-knows how long. The baristas at Nordic Bakery make espresso drinks, but they will also grind and filter a cup for you to order, which I totally dig. Mmm... fresh.
But the Nordic Bakery isn't just a purveyor of filter coffee, so it should not be judged on my appreciation for its filter coffee alone. So, as a formality, I will run down the pros and cons of this fine establishment (that, did I mention, serves up a great filter coffee).
PRO: The cup only costs £2 (which is 20p cheaper than Monmouth).
CON: Only one type of coffee is available (it is no Monmouth in terms of variety...).
PRO: Seating is readily available, plus it's just off Golden Square (more seating! Pigeons! Okay, so this might be a con if you don't like pigeons.)
CON: The service walked a fine line between indifference and annoyance.
PRO: There's a toilet! And the kitchen downstairs near the toilet smells of delicious cinnamon bun!
CON: My cinnamon bun was just so-so (not fresh out of the oven), especially given its £2 price tag.
Conclusion: I will undoubtedly return for some more coffee, but I'll check my appetite and service expectations at the door. That is, unless the cinnamon buns are fresh from the oven.
Um. How do you say love in Norwegian? I know it in 4 languages, but not in Norwegian. So, I'll just stick with English. L.O.V.E this place. If you've ever been to scandinavia or the nordics, this place puts you in a catapult and slings you across the sea the minute you walk in the door.
I went in there yesterday, having been asked by a friend to go. It's funny because my apartment looks right at the entrance and I should have gone there by now, but every time I've walked past it was busy. AND for good reason.
Where else in the UK can you get authentic Lingonberry muffins and a latte the size of a Norwegian viking ship?! I know I know, it might be racist, but seriously, it was good. Lattes are certainly better off elsewhere, but the decor in here and the food makes you feel like you're there.
The wood paneled walls and the simple communal wood tables are so chic. I'm glad I went yesterday because there was a photoshoot going on, probably of the owners. Kinda funny because I felt like a rockstar (ok, kinda in the background of pictures of rockstars). Anyway, maybe one day the Monocle will feature this place since they love all things scandic design.
I think I need to set up a new rating system given my ethnic heritage...
4* Die Die Must Try - and come back.
I was promised the best cinnamon buns in the world when I stepped through their doors and oh my, they didn't disappoint. Huge, sugary, cinnamony crispy buns that could easily transport you to heaven in a heartbeat. If you're ever near Baker Street, or, hell, London generally, it is WELL worth the trip. I'm already debating another six hour round trip for one. Omnom.
Holy cinnamon buns Batman! I love this cafe - friendly staff, fabulous food and fantastic Finnish influences. I've never had Finnish food before, have you?
In classic bakery style, they have a glass case of open sandwiches with dark rye bread and toppings like egg and anchovy, smoked salmon and gravadlax. The rye bread is apparently baked in Finland and flown over, um let's ignore those carbon miles.
The tastiest option is definitely to order a cinnamon bun and cappuccino. They are known for their fantastic coffee and the buns are so sticky, so cinnamony and just incredibly addictive. Or try an oaty caramel florentine type biscuit. Forget Nero, Costa, all those places, if you are in W1 - the Nordic Bakery is definitely worth a visit.
This place has actually become one of my favorite spots in London.
The staff aren't the friendliest, but they're nice enough to let me sit for hours on my laptop, and to be honest, I'd rather they stay how they are than turn into Starbucks Baristas (over attentive) as they just let you get on with it.
After it goes dark, they put out kitschy candle holders with tea lights in them. Their sandwiches are excellent. Everything about this place is awesome. LOVE LOVE LOVE.
I'd give it 5 stars, but the bathroom isn't the best in the world, nor do they have enough power sockets.
This rating is just for the cinnamon buns, nothing else, because it was packed and it was really all I wanted to try at that moment.
When I first got in, the whole place smelled really nice, but I have to say the cinnamon bun fell short of expectation. It was nice and warm, and the layers looked really nice, but it was dense and bready, and oddly gooey on the inside. It's a personal preference, but I didn't like it at all.
I don't mind going back to try their coffee next time though.
I made the decision to hate it.
Why? Because the person who told me to meet her there said "Oh my God you'll love this place", which made me certain it'd be a no-good, pretentious piece of (fill in preferred word here).
And she was late to meet me. So I was grumpy as hell. The Nordic bakery stood no chance.
But then the prettiest girl of all time served me, and my faith was restored. Men are funny creatures -- take us to the Ritz, or take us to McDonalds -- we don't care, just make sure the girls are pretty.
I got a tea. The person I was meeting got something else, but why would I remember what it was when the girl serving me was so darn pretty?
So I remember nothing.
The next night, I'm walking through London with a friend, another female one, and we're looking for a place to grab a tea -- which is when we appeared in Golden Square. So, feeling clever and full of knowledge I said "oh, I know a place", and then took us the long way all around the square because I didn't actually know where the Nordic Bakery was.
So there I was, second night in a row. And who served us? Of course, the pretty one. Did she remember me? I assume no; I'm not the guy girl's remember, that's the other guy.
But she did seem to kind of recognise me -- that guy, the one who's bringing two different women to a little bakery two nights in a row. So now I seem like one of THOSE types of guys when really I'm the other kind.
I get a tea, and I get my friend something. And I get myself a rye cake and it's okay.
Whether this place is any good, who knows? We can never be objective, we're drawn to places based on the experiences, the people, the feelings, or simply because we're lost.
The Nordic Bakery; check it out, I'll probably be there with some random woman, while choking on a rye cake.
I like big buns and I can not lie.
If you like big, fluffy, gooey cinnamon buns, Nordic Bakery is for you. A cozy interior with minimalist decor and tables, this cafe/bakery is the perfect place to meet up with a friend, have a coffee, and gossip over a bun or other pastry selection.
Really, if you are visiting central London it is just NOT OK to skip Nordic Bakery.
Whenever I am feeling especially lonely or home sick I make a weekend trip to here. It never fails to cheer me up. The cinnamon rolls really are delicious but I go for the broke-ass cookie. Wait. I guess thats not actually what its called, but just look at the baked offerings and find the big flat cookie that looks like a mistake. Yes, that one. Delicious.
I find that a cookie and a coffee while watching people pass by on the square tends to cheer me up effectively every time.
Since my last review I have (via a bad influence at the desk behind me) realised they do absolutely wonderful cinnamon buns, so I am warming to this place.
But as I still have to walk a few blocks further to get my coffee (infinitely quicker) I'm only increasing it to 3 stars...
The Nordic Bakery opposite Golden Square in Soho is a place I discovered thanks to a Finnish friend of mine. It's become a habit of ours to meet up for coffee here, thanks to their freshly prepared Finnish treats.
It's not uncommon to walk in and to be greeted by the smell of freshly baked cinnamon buns, which are hard to resist. These are not your average cinnamon buns - they're delightfully sticky and have a reassuring heft. You will not be disappointed.
They also have great rye bread sandwiches, again done in typical Finnish style. I particular enjoy the ham one - incredibly simple and surprisingly satisfying. They usually ask if you want them open or closed, in other words, whether you want one piece of rye bread or two - opt for the open one, my Finnish friend assures me this is the way it's done.
Another thing to note is that you can buy the rye bread in bulk, frozen which my friend does regularly and I have done once too.
The Nordic Bakery is justifiably known for their Finnish cinnamon rolls. They are rolled up like croissants instead of normal cinnamon rolls and are crispy yet soft. They are also very large and sweeter than Norwegian cinnamon rolls. I highly recommend sharing.
This is also the place to go if you need your Nordic food fix. They have typical sandwiches and also an array of goods to buy, like cloudberry jam.
Very good, very pricy.
Nordic bakery does everything very well, its a shame that it's so expensive.
The cinnamon buns are extraordinary but regularly sell out as a consequence. The other eats are easily better than you'll find in basically any other café in London. The coffee is simply very good, though without the variety and love of Monmouth.
I'm a big fan of the warm simple modern decor.
I'd give Nordic Bakery 4.5 if I could, and 5 but for the price.
Coffee is ok... but the cinnamon buns are amazing!.
very nice place to spend some time. Staff are friendly enough without pestering.
No, no, no, no, no, no. I came here expecting gooey flavorful cinnamon buns the size of my face! What I got was a burnt hard hockey puck with some cinnamon to help with its disguise.
The atmosphere was well cute. But the buns were well grim. Maybe it was because I tried them late in the day, therefore they were getting...um...crispy? But if they are popular then the batch I ate from should have been fresh? And if so, that means they served me burnt food on purpose? Oh, I can't figure it out. And frankly I don't want to.
Why wasn't this place invented when I still worked in Soho?! What a great addition to Golden Square - Starbucks beware
Went for the first time the other day, actually for a relaxed business chat. We were a larger crowd and grateful for the great big table in the centre of the cafe.
I soon regretted having opted for a cappucino out of habit. They prepare individual portions of proper filter coffee here, and the cakes just looked spectacular - real food envy stuff.
I like the fact they bring your order to your table on little trays, everything is just sooo tasteful and tasty here. And noone complained that we occupied our table for more than an hour.
I don't think I have ever been surrounded by so many Scandinavians outsdie Denmark or Sweden - couldn't ask for a better endorsement.
Can't wait for the next excuse to visit this place.
Amazing cinnamon buns, and rather huge too (good for sharing), all for £2. Its a well hidden cafe off the tourist beaten path in the area, and hence very tranquil and peaceful, good for a catch up chat with a friend.
They also serve lots of Nordic sandwiches, as well as Karelian Pie.
I had lunch here on my birthday, and wasn't exactly wowed.
The staff were clinical to say the least, pretty rude if I'm being honest. And good LORD, the prices! Without a doubt one of the most expensive places to buy a tiny sandwich from in the surrounding Soho area, and that's saying something.
My cheese and ham sandwich was drenched in mustard to the point at which I had to scrape it, and it hardly delivered on taste. It was ok, but that's hardly a good benchmark.
Equally, the cinnamon bun just didn't cut it for me. It was too big, too dry and rather tasteless.
However, the coffee was fantastic, and taking Cate's point below about free WiFi, if you want to go and hang out in a Nordic canteen to work, this is as good a place as any in the area to do it.
Very nice coffee with good snacks. Staff is really friendly too.
Try the cinnamon bun, it's really a great little surprise. Not too sweet with great flavors.
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