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Mathias Dahlgren Implements Matbaren’s Biggest Change Ever

Mathias Dahlgren opened Matbaren in 2007 at the Grand Hôtel in Stockholm. At that time, such a groundbreaking restaurant concept had never been seen on the Swedish restaurant scene. Since then, the restaurant has evolved while maintaining the same menu composition – until now.

Few contemporary restaurants have changed as little as Matbaren since it opened in 2007. While the restaurant has continuously switched dishes on the menu, now it is making a major change in the entire menu structure.

There’s something exhilarating about constantly challenging gastronomy and the thinking around cuisine. Now is the right time to change the menu and guest experience. Over the years, a great number of the dishes that we created achieved signature status, and these will continue to have an important place on our menu, now joined by new dishes that will challenge both the kitchen and our guests,” says Mathias Dahlgren.

The new menu is divided into three main sections, with the dishes in each category being changed according to season and inspiration.

Fresh produce in focus

Tasty fresh produce and handcrafted delicacies have always taken center stage at Matbaren in line with Mathias Dahlgren’s food philosophy, based on what he calls ‘the natural cuisine’. Now Mathias aims to take natural flavors to the next level by creating dishes in which an individual ingredient takes a more prominent and independent role in the dish than before.

Matbaren’s four dishes

The dishes presented under Matbaren’s four dishes concept are new for Mathias Dahlgren’s restaurants. They may be based on a cooking method, a flavor combination, fresh produce, or something else. Four new dishes that give the kitchen the freedom to challenge itself and a way to work creatively with what feels inspiring here and now. Over time, a newly crafted dish may become a future classic.


The classics on the menu will also be switched on an ongoing basis and consist of dishes that have become guest favorites over the years, achieving signature status. Menu classics will be updated continuously according to the season. A classic on the menu is never a novelty, but something that has previously been served at Matbaren.

Characteristic for Matbaren is its mid-sized dishes, ordered and served one-by-one during the meal, a concept that was launched when the restaurant opened. At that time, mid-sized dishes were something relatively new and had never formed the basis of a central restaurant concept before in Sweden. Today, several restaurants have been inspired by the concept and mid-sized dishes are a natural part of menus in Sweden today.

Photos by: Lennart Weibull

Nowadays, few restaurants last more than 15 years without undergoing a major change in the guest environment and the main concept itself. When we opened Matbaren, I remember that many thought it was the strangest restaurant they’d ever seen. Now hardly anyone raises an eyebrow anymore about the color or shape of the interior, or about how the mid-sized dishes are prepared, presented, and served. Talk about a sustainable restaurant experience! This marks the biggest change that has taken place at Matbaren since we opened,”saysMathiasDahlgren.

Mathias Dahlgren won the prestigious Bocuse d’Or culinary competition in 1997. During that time, he ran the renowned restaurant Bon Lloc, a pioneering restaurant for its time. In conjunction with a major renovation at the Grand Hôtel in Stockholm in 2006, Mathias Dahlgren moved in and initially opened Matsalen and Matbaren in 2007. Matsalen closed in 2016, making way for the vegetarian restaurant Rutabaga