Scandinavian food is definitely having a moment on the world stage, and Katee McLean is eager to introduce Kansas Citians to the game meats, herring, smoked trout, pickled eggs and lingonberries that were a part of her great-great grandfather Olaf Krokstrom’s larder.
In mid-February, McLean, a Johnson County Community College culinary program graduate and former member of the culinary team that traveled to Hong Kong and Singapore, opened Krokstrom Klubb & Market with business partner Josh Rogers.
“This has been my life’s dream. We’re hoping to bring something new to the Kansas City market,” she says, pointing to a black-and-white photo on one wall of her great-grandfather, who married one of Olaf’s daughters and owned a butcher shop in Elsmore, Kan.
The 120-seat restaurant and bar pay tribute to a smorgasbord of small plates based on Scandinavian-style charcuterie. Drinks include glogg, ice wine and mead, as well as craft cocktails featuring aquavit, a traditional vodka-like spirit made from grain or potatoes and flavored with caraway seed.
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“Scandinavian charcuterie is totally different than Spanish or Italian charcuterie,” McLean explains while presenting three wooden charcuterie boards with the branded indentation of a Swedish dala horse on it for her staff to study the contents.
Each board is artfully arranged with a smattering of cured meats, fisk (fish) or ost (cheese). The pumpernickel baguette rounds that accompany the charcuterie were developed in collaboration with Farm to Market bread.
“It’s funny how you crave the things you hated most (as a child). My grandma only kept pumpernickel in the house,” McLean recalls. “When I stayed there I always complained, ‘Why can’t we have white bread?’ ”
▪ Krokstrom Klubb & Market, 3601 Broadway, 816-599-7531, klubbkrokstrom.com