CHAPTER 14: Surströmming (Fermented Herring), SWEDEN

Welcome to Sweden! A country of vast spaces and long winters, deep woods, thousands of miles of coastline, archipelagos and islands, and quaint houses. It is a country of many seasonal food traditions, like crayfish, which most Swedes love.
Yet one tradition can incite fear and anguish, even in a hardened Swede! But to those in the know, fermented herring actually smells like heaven!
Since Swedish weather can never be trusted, even on a rare sunny day, chilly evenings drive us inside, where we can truly appreciate the finer nuances of a 17-year-old can of Surströmming or fermented herring.
An intense, complex, and salty food needs a like-minded wine, like an aged Grillo from Marsala, Sicily. Made from native grape Grillo, this wine is nutty and savoury enough to pair with a fish that is more pungent and complex than most cheese.
Smaklig måltid!

Niklas Bergqvist started out in the kitchens of various restaurants in Stockholm, Sweden. A deep interest in wine made him take a sommelier course to understand the concepts of matching wine and food. A badly broken leg then led him to the WSET Diploma, which he finished as the best Continental European student in 2012. Since then he is working full time with wine as head sommelier in a members club for wine collectors as well as a wine educator. He is a Vinitaly International Academy Italian Wine Expert.