Tag Archives: brunch

It’s official – I’m feeling the 4pm blackness of Stockholm.

29 Oct

Today I was going to grace everyone in the virtual world with an entry on Pennsylvania Wine & Spirits vs. System Bolaget. I started looking up facts about legal drinking age and taxes and it just started getting on my nerves. (I figured out why we can’t afford liquor here: there is a 200 SEK tax alone on spirits above 40% alcohol, which is about $30 if you function in American dollars.) SO after I started reading all this nonsense, I decided that everything would just be better for me if I could buy whatever kind of booze I wanted whenever I felt like at my local grocer, and that’s the end of that. Now in lieu of what I was going to provide, you guys get to read about things that Ben and I have been missing (besides family and friends duuuuuuuuuh.)♥

1.) PUMPKIN BEER. This is no secret. Anyone that has had any kind of contact with me throughout the last month has heard over and over and over about how much I miss pumpkin beer. I love pumpkin beer. I LOVE IT. October is my favorite beer month of all the months. Spicy, delicious, sweet, hoppy, PUMPKINY BEER delicousness dancing along my taste buds one by one. If anyone out there really loves me, you’ll harvest a six pack of pumpkin beer from yr fancy, magical American pumpkin beer patches and allow me to drink the whole thing in sunny silence outside upon my return to the states.

2.) CHEAP BEER. This is also not another secret. Beer here is expensive. And most of it is gross. (I’ve compared it to diluted foot water, though I seem to be the only person that thinks that’s a comparison worth giggling about.) We have found one happy hour that takes place at a vegan restaurant close to Ben’s building that sells Hoegaarden or Sierra Nevada for 25 SEK (about $3.75). NOT BAD except that I can count the number of both of those that I’ve ever had in the states on one hand. Because they’re not good. Other than this magical happy hour, we have yet to find a bar where you can get a pint for under 55-60 SEK ($8.25 – $9). And that’s of any kind of beer. We’ve been told to get used to Guinness bc it’s pretty much the only tolerable beer here that almost every bar has. (Thank you I will, I love me some Guinness. And I’ve found it’s secretly a really fun thing to order a pint of it in an Irish pub.)

3.) BIG, FAT, FRESH BERRIES. Don’t get me wrong. Sweden has berries, okay. I understand now, that growing up in America has spoiled me rotten when it comes to having fresh berries on hand for a pretty reasonable price pretty much any time I wanted. HOWEVER. I also see now the effect of not growing yr shit organically. (Get it?) We bought berries here twice, once we got raspberries and the second time we got strawberries. The raspberries we didn’t get to eat because they got moldy the day after we bought them. The strawberries were SO GOOD. They were teeeeny tiny (I have a picture on my flickr, you can go see if you want) but you got about 5 times as many per carton, so you weren’t missing out since the berries were smaller. I’ll probably reconsider buying organic vs. inorganic berries once I get back to the states, but I am going to stay it was good while it lasted. (Also, Stockholm has in almost every once of it’s grocers a container that has fresh frozen berries, which I haven’t bought any yet, but they look super appropriate and delish if I were going to bake or cook with them.)

4.) FOREVER 21. I’m not saying I don’t like the fashion sense of the Swedes. I love it. I love all the neon colors and textures and jackets and hats and combat boots. It’s just that the prices make my credit card frown. I miss cheap clothes that I didn’t have to worry about getting dirty or holey or ruined in the wash (keep in mind I still can’t read the options on our washer or dryer.) I miss the cheap racks and racks of jewelry that all inevitably gets lost after a couple months. I miss the cheap shoes that I’m going to have to throw away when it’s time to move back to the states ANYHOW. However! I have popped myself into one of the hundreds of H&Ms that are in Stockholm, and they have pretty inexpensive clothing compared to everything else I’ve seen here. (I kid you not, I don’t know how many are here, but there are literally H&Ms across the street from H&Ms, which are a block away from more H&Ms.)

5.) BRUNCH. I miss the endless amount of brunches I could choose from. Zenith. Doublewide. Harris Grill. Coca. Square Cafe. Quiet Storm. I miss that I could get half off bloody mary’s basically all day Saturday and Sunday, just because that’s how Harris rolls. I miss the option of having a cheap and delicious craft beer (or five) with my Sunday morning salad at Doublewide. I miss the wonderful $10 all vegetarian brunch spread of Zenith. (I’ve read about one brunch spot here, that just happens to be vegetarian. It’s called Herman’s and you can get brunch for the equivalent of $25. Includes coffee, not bloody mary.) We have just figured so far for the $50 we can make everything at home and enjoy with movies.

6.) TACO TUESDAYS. We sure can get tacos here on Tuesdays, but they sure aren’t a dollar (er, 6.5 SEK?) They’re a mouth-watering 25 SEK each (about $4, not so bad), and only are they this cheap at a place called La Neta. And they’re super good, we’ve only been there once but we’ll be back to get a good authentic Mexican kick in the throat again. Aside from the cheap tacos, I really liked the environment, knowing people there, and making the trek from our house on foot. While I miss it, I’m sure I’ll just be looking back at it as just a fond Pittsburgh memory, soon to be replaced by a new favorite thing we like to do here.

7.) MY JOB. I said it! I miss working. So far I’ve been sending out emails for volunteering, and so far every single last one of them has been a bust. I miss being around people that I can understand, people that like me. WORK FRIENDS. JOKES. MONEY. FREE FOOD AND BOOZE. SOMETHING TO DO. That’s right, I’m feeling the hurt on all of the above.




I know it just really seems like Ben and I miss drunkenness and consumerism, but that’s not true. I don’t think either of us have ever really been into having ALL THE THINGS, but we do both like to have a good time with good people, and it’s hard to have that here when we’re getting used to switching our lives from USD to SEK. It’s especially hard since everything has been going on a card where we get invoiced in American dollars. Give us another month or so here, and I’ll be able to make a post of our favorite things about Stockholm and all the friends were making (hopefully, I’m going batshit insane here without a social life.)

Val & Ben

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