Of Oslo’s many splendoured charms, its dining scene is probably one of its most rewarding, even for regular visitors.
Layer on a nuanced design sensibility and it’s no surprise that Norway’s capital is filled with so many artfully conceived eateries. Named after a character in the novel ‘Sult’, Happolati occupies a light-filled space, recently vacated by the Michelin-starred Ylajali, on the ground floor of the former National Hospital, which was built in 1872. Local designers Anderssen & Voll have taken their cue from the restaurant’s Asian-inflected menu – think pine screens, ash and walnut finishes, chairs inspired by Japanese banners, origami wall lamps, and modern takes on traditional paper lanterns.
As diners flip through a heavy wood-encased menu, in the kitchen, chefs Mads Kjøllmoen and Rune Hinnland pair Scandinavian produce with soft Asian flavours, like chips made of shards of dehydrated fermented cabbage that are served with seaweed mayonnaise, and bone marrow and oysters topped with tempura.