When I return to Copenhagen, it is with actually a slight tear rolling down my cheek because one of my favorite places will have been recently closed. Papirøen was located on the small island of Christianshavn; which is in my opinion the cutest part of all of Copenhagen. Passed the colorful houses on the canal, the part of Christianshavn which Papirøen could have been found was in a more industrial area right next to Freetown Christiania.
Translated to "Paper Island" or more commonly known as "Copenhagen Street Food", this old industrial warehouse was filled with food trucks specializing in different kinds of food from all over the world. There was barbecue, Moroccan, Indian, French, Chinese, Italian, Mexican, Juice Bars - and my personal favorite a Brazilian truck that had the most amazing veggie burgers that I had ever had. With all of these options I was such a creature of habit and the five or so times I went to Paper Island I got the exact same veggie burger because it was that good.
While the food found at Paper Island was amazing I think my favorite part of the whole experience was the atmosphere. I've always said that Europeans really understand how to be social, but I think this is especially true in Denmark especially with their concept of hygge (something I will definitely do a blog post all about). The social environment was created through old industrial elements like shipping containers creating an infrastructure for more seating (see photograph above) and the long picnic tables that at night were filled with candles. For me, the best part of the social environment was the fact that wherever I looked I could spot the tourist or non-Dane because they were the ones on their phones. Europeans, or at least the ones that I have been around, are more conscious of their phone use than Americans. When I've spent time with a European phones are usually out of sight, and at Paper Island the atmosphere created a welcoming ambiance that made people want to linger, relax and talk with the people that they are with and be truly present in the moment over a few drinks and samplings of good food. From Europe, I have learned to disconnect to be present with the people I am interacting with and is something I definitely want to be a part of my life back in America.
I have spent many hours at Paper Island with my friends and have spent more money on veggie burgers and mulled wine than I would even care to admit - I'm blaming the fact that I still don't understand how the Danish kroner works! But the memories I have made and the people that I have made them with have made this a place that will be impossible to forget.
If you want to see what this place was like and oogle over the food selection and maybe cry a little at the countdown that has ran out click the link here :)
Jeg skal til at savne dig Papirøen.