Brothers Lars and Per Karlsson have the charm and essence of Sweden’s rugged West Coast etched into their ‘salty’ souls. As your culinary marine adventure unfolds the brothers’ Karlsson will introduce you to their favourite haunts among the off shore islands, narrow streets and fish markets of Grebbestad. After a nautical jaunt aboard their traditional two masted fishing boat you’ll be treated to oysters, a glass of stout or champagne and enlightened on the sustainable fishing practices adopted by the local community.
Grebbestad’s small harbour punches above its weight when it comes to harvesting lobster and oyster. Grebbestad has a virtual monopoly on Sweden’s huge European oysters (Ostrea edulis) and lands over half of Sweden’s lobsters along with traditional creel-caught lobster from nearby Norway. Everts Sjöbod, the brother’s timber boat house is an attraction in itself. Built in the 1800’s it’s filled with bleached rope, hand made crab pots, and copious amounts of machinery and paraphernalia from a by-gone age. Up-stairs has the ambiance of a charming but ramshackle ‘gentleman’s club’ including a bar, nautical antiques, sofas with that cozy ‘lived-in feel’ and a huge swing open loading bay that reveals magnificent panoramic views of the off-shore archipelago.
Born and bred on the coast Lars and Per will introduce you the hidden world of Bohuslän’s fascinating culture and natural heritage. Their expert carpentry skills were well utilized on the painstaking renovation work conducted on ‘Tuffa’, their 8.7 meter, 4.5 ton fishing vessel. Tuffa is licensed for 12 passengers and was designed by legendary Swedish boat builder Gösta Johansson and originally entered commercial service in 1952.
Lazily meandering through the maze of polished granite islands you’ll be taken back to the old days when fishing was done on a small, sustainable scale. You’ll be able to try your hand at hauling in lobster and crab pots and you’ll have fun fishing schools of mackerel by hand line. If the opportunity arises Lars and Per will detour to passing Norwegian shrimp vessels to bargain for a bag of freshly steamed North Sea shrimp.
Everts Sjöbod’s and its oyster safaris were recently featured by Swedish TV-chef Tina Nordström’s popular series ‘Scandinavian Cooking’ shown last year on the BBC’s Food Channel. Lars and Peter are active members of the Grebbestad based Oyster Academy, an organization dedicated to the well-being of the West Coast’s oyster beds and the promotion of the oyster as a unique culinary experience.