Grand Café – a history of Norwegian Culture

It is with great pride that Fursetgruppen and Grand Café Oslo welcome new and old guests once again to Grand Café restaurant and their wine cellar. The doors open on Thursday 20th October at 4pm.  Both Fursetgruppen and Grand Café Oslo are humble and proud to help continue and create a new cultural history with Grand Café.

-We’ve been looking forward to finally being able to reopen Grand Café and we are happy to welcome everyone back, says Marketing and Communications manager in Fursetgruppen restaurant group, Marianne Nygård-Hansen.

Grand Café
The new Grand Café will be a restaurant with a unique atmosphere. High ceilings and grand spaces are ready to welcome old and new guests. The two head chefs Alexander Østli Berg and Christofer Bengtsson are in charge of the kitchen staff.

The kitchen is open plan so that guests can view the chefs preparing food using ingredients mainly from Scandinavia but with guest appearances from other parts of the world. The head chefs focus on great flavours and hints at exciting dishes.

-The team is really looking forward to seeing how Grand Café will once again come alive and become Oslo’s natural hot spot. It will be great to experience a fully and newly renovated Grand Café, and to hear the guests’ opinions on both the food and the décor. We hope that we will surprise everyone – positively, says general manager Anine Tennøe.

The wine cellar
Now you can find a large, open wine cellar in what was previously the Bonanza nightclub at Grand Hotel. A wine concept with room for a considerable collection of great wines at different prices. You can enjoy a class of wine in cosy and rustic surroundings while eating snacks like ham and cheese from the bar. Led by chef sommelier Fabio Borgianni who has broad experience from different food and wine concepts. The wine cellar will also be home to small and large parties, wine tastings and wine courses and has two séparées of different sizes.

The history
We’ve focused on keeping the historic lines by for example uncovering and recreating Lars Backer’s decorated ceilings in addition to renovating the Thonet chairs which have been a Grand Café staple for decades. At the same time we have focused on the interior decorating with contemporary references to create a Grand Café not only embrasing history but also today. Guests can marvel over the sight of the three famous Krohg paintings that are still present and even more visible today. Art history is still an integral part of the space and our goal is for it to be passed on by people from the present. We greatly respect history, but at the same time it is our responsibility to create a Grand Café suitable for our time.

– Our starting point has been the colourful people and interesting diversity of guests from all parts of society who have visited Grand Café. The restaurant has been a unique meeting point and an arena for socializing, regardless of social position, for over a 100 years. Several of these characters are visible in the painting ”Kristianiabohemen” by Per Krogh – well-known authors, artists and other central people living their spiritual lives at Grand Café towards the end of the 19th century. We’ve focused on interior décor, communications solutions and a visual expression for continuing and managing the cultural inheritance, says Bjørn Tore Furset, owner of Fursetgruppen.

To embrace history further a photo art direction has also been developed as a supplement to the painting – as a clear reference between past and present. Norwegian photographer Baard Lunde is behind the photos that can be found on different surfaces, like the foyer.

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Top photo: Christian Rignes and Bjørn Tore Furset by Eivind Taksrud

Photos below by Stian Broch