Photo: Danish Agriculture & Food Council

The winner of the Pork Dish of the Year award

The excitement was tangible when Restaurant Palægade in Copenhagen was proclaimed the winner of the prestigious Pork Dish of the Year award. The winning dish was based on the Danish national favourite, Burning Love.

Five nominated chefs from some of Denmark’s best restaurants experimented with new taste combinations, vegetables and cuts of pork to deliver their own innovative and 'greener' pork dish in the competition to win the Pork Dish of the Year award for 2021.

This year, many different cuts of pork were used in the nominated dishes, with particular focus on creating new flavour combinations by marrying the many cuts with different vegetables to create a greener and tastier experience.

Read also: New taste wheel brings out new flavours in pork

The competition aims to inspire chefs and consumers to discover the potential of pork. Pork has a broad 'taste universe' with over 600 different taste nuances, which is why the role of pork on the plate has evolved.

Read also: Pork and the perfect food combinations

This year, the award ceremony took place in person. The Head of Trade and Market Relations, Mette Gammicchia, presented the first prize, a cheque for DKK 30,000, to Rune Bjerre and Lukas Jensen from Restaurant Palægade.

"We’re incredibly surprised that we’ve won. We agreed that we were the underdogs as there are some extremely talented chefs who were also nominated for the award. It’s so cool to have won and it means an enormous amount for us and for our restaurant,” said a delighted Rune Bjerre, Head Chef at Restaurant Palægade.

Photo: Rune Bjerre and Lukas Jensen from Restaurant Palægade receiving the first prize handed by Mette Gammicchia. Source: Danish Agriculture & Food Council.

An enormous taste universe
Palægade’s version of Burning Love is not just randomly put together. It is built up around the history of the restaurant, which was rebuilt after a fire in the spring of 2020. By participating in the Pork Dish of the Year competition, the aim was to show that the restaurant is back in tip-top form – as confirmed by their version of Burning Love.

Although the field this year was highly competitive, Lukas Jensen and Rune Bjerre’s winning dish made a particular impression on the jury. They described the recipe, which comprises grilled pork belly with trumpet mushrooms, beetroot and beetroot meringue, as 'a great taste experience'. The jury also commented:

"Palægade’s Burning Love is the perfect combination of storytelling and tastiness. The flavour of the pork is brought out by being part of several elements and the combination of semi-dried beetroot, beetroot pickle, beetroot meringue, trumpet mushrooms and pickled onions is a stroke of genius. The jury has a 'burning love' for the sauce made from roasted pork bones and smoked lard. It was the overall impression of the dish that clinched Restaurant Palægade’s being awarded Pork Dish of the Year 2021.”

The other nominees for the 2021’s Pork Dish of the Year award were:

  • Restaurant Domestic, Aarhus
  • Restaurant Fru Larsen, Laurbjerg
  • Restaurant Pasfall, Odense
  • Restaurant Syttende, Sønderborg

FACTS about Pork Dish of the Year 2021:
The Pork Dish of the Year award is arranged by the Danish Agriculture & Food Council and is supported by the Norma and Frode S. Jacobsen’s Foundation. Having visited the five nominated chefs and their restaurants as well as tasted the respective dishes, the jury votes on the winner. The award is presented by the Danish Agriculture & Food Council.

Read also: Pork dish of the year 2020