Journey to the Faroe Islands

In 2008, I saw my first 3D movie: Journey to the Center of the Earth. The movie follows Trevor Anderson’s (played by Brandon Fraser) adventure uncovering the secrets of a world beneath. On my Study Tour, I felt like Anderson, discovering a place that before DIS, I never knew existed. I was taken aback by the picturesque landscape, and the surreal nature. Where is this you ask? It’s the Faroe Islands. I could write pages describing the Faroe Islands, but I probably still won’t be able to do it justice, so I’ll let the pictures take it from here.

We visited the Faroe Islands to study Nordic cuisine – much of what we were focused on was studying the food supply chain, from the first ingredients to the dishes served on tables. One of the most memorable experiences was foraging for nettles and making our own pizzas! We met with the owner of cafe Gimburlombini on Nólsoy, who sources all of her ingredients locally from her farm and the wilderness. After taking a tour of her chicken and vegetable farm, we hand picked nettles and learned about edible herbs. Then we made nettle based pizza and I had a nettle tea. I found it extremely rewarding to engage with my food at all levels of the supply chain.

Nettle Tea
Nettle Pizza with Goat Cheese and Olive Oil

We also had the opportunity to try food at the other end of the spectrum – fine dining. We had a group lunch and sample tasting menu at Koks, the Faroe Island’s only Michelin star restaurant. Every part of the experience was truly unique. The restaurant is hidden in the mountains, twenty minutes away from the capital, Tórshavn. We had to meet a staff at a rendezvous point, where we were jeeped to the entrance. The restaurant is located in the home of a former blacksmith, and only seats 28 people at a time. 

The Jeep at the Rendezvous Point
Our Class Selfie in the Koks’ Jeep

We got to try a 10 course menu, with food made only from ingredients found on the Faroe Islands. This puts a lot of restrictions on the chefs because the Faroe Islands are limited to sheep, fish, and certain vegetation. Thus the dishes were extremely creative, and could be viewed as artwork. We had seafood that was presented in the original shells and tried various fermented foods, like whale and lamb. It was one of the most unique meals I’ve had so far in my life.

Our Tasting Menu
Group Photo at Koks with Head Chef Poul Andrias Ziska

Reflecting back on the tour now that it is over, I’m glad DIS provided me the opportunity to explore the Faroe Islands. Meeting with the locals and trying Faroese cuisine were very informative. Often, material taught in class can be abstract and not paint a complete picture. However with this tour, I feel confident in truly understanding Faroese culinary culture and traditions. I’m excited to share my experience with my friends back home. 

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