We’ve been living in Oslo for a bit over a year now. My husband and I are keen foodies. We love going out to restaurants. We enjoy cheap and cheerful joints as well as fancy 3 Michelin starred restaurants. This time, my husband was tasked to book a place for our monthly anniversary. So he picked Hos Thea, the #1 ranked restaurant in Oslo according to Tripadvisor. Does it deserve to be known as the best restaurant in town? You shall find out…
The decor at Hos Thea
It is very conveniently located in the Frogner area towards Skillebekk, south of Bygdøy Allée. It’s right by the Skillebekk tram 13 station. It is surrounded by 1900’s historical buildings and just minutes away from the romantic Clarion hotel magnificently covered in red leaves in autumn.
Inside hos Thea
As expected, it is a fine dining place with white pressed tablecloths. However it is rather small and on a warm day it can be a bit too hot and noisy. Indeed there are probably 10 tables in a tiny room and because of their top ranking on TripAdvisor I can imagine how it can be full every day.
It was not easy to have a romantic conversation that night, but the food and most importantly the service made up for it.
The food at Hos Thea
Sergio, the chef, is Spanish and has learnt how to cook in France. He likes sweet and round notes. The menu evolves throughout the year following the seasons. Here is what we picked, part of our 4 course menu:
Pan fried lobster tail on flatbread with Brillat Savarin cheese, small tomatoes and oregano pesto. Scroll down to read how I liked it…
Deer tenderloin cooked to perfection in a blueberry sauce with a delicious creamy mash potato and seasonal mushrooms
Beautiful cheese platter with all the name and origins of each cheese. Don’t be shy and ask for a refill of their home baked fruit bread. I did and was not disappointed!
Dark intense chocolate cake
Hos Thea’s unmatched service
The service is definitely what sets this place apart. Sergio checks in with each individual table.
First he came and offer a complimentary glass of champagne to start the dinner. He quickly spotted we were French so we had all our conversations in French.
After we finished our entrees, he came to check on us. Here’s how it went (translated in English here for you):
Sergio: “how was it?”
Hubby: “Well, since you ask, I found my scallops plate a bit too bland. I was expecting a bit more of a kick and my wife didn’t fully enjoy her lobster either…”
Me, feeling a bit embarrassed: “Err, well… it’s true I’m not a fan of the sundried tomato and parmesan cracker with the lobster.” It tasted like 80’s Crackers Belin but I didn’t feel like saying so. ” I’m more into a ginger sauce or something a bit more exotic with my lobster”
Sergio: “Are you guys working in hospitality?”
Us: “No, but we are foodies, we love dining out!”
Sergio: ” I’m into sweet and round notes. That what I like, but thanks for the feedback”
10 minutes later Sergio came back with two plates containing each a scallop and a lobster tail on a dill and sour cream sauce and a curry chutney. He said “Try this!”.
It was delicious and we were so amazed that he came back with a new combination of flavors that totally took into account our feedback! And imagine the cost of these extra scallops and lobster for the kitchen! We loved having that connection with Sergio, we felt we were speaking the same language and that whole experience si definitely a great story to tell!
Hos Thea’ offers great value for money
A Hos Thea you can pick à la Carte or your can choose from 4 or 6 courses of a degustation menu, with out without matching wines.
Dinner Menu: 4 selections kr 545, 6 selections kr 745,-
Wine menu: 4 glasses kr 545, 6 glasses kr 745,-
Hubby selected the 4 course menu with matching wines. I’m not a big drinker so I asked for just one glass of wine for the whole meal. What they ended up doing was to serve me 2 or 3 different wines to match my dishes, in smaller quantities and ended up only charging the price of one glass!
The bill: total around kr 1,700 (€175) for both of us with all the wine we could take and the champagne and the whole gastronomic experience.
Most similar high end place would charge in excess of kr 2,000! This is probably why Hos Thea is ranked #1 with TripAdvisor. Interestingly enough, Hubby was expecting a lot more from this place, perhaps something like a signature dish or a distinctive touch on all the dishes. Something that clearly explains their #1 position.
I’ve personally noticed that that the most fancy and premium places are not what readers rank the highest. Service and value for money are the main criteria on that review platform. We felt great, we felt at home and that what Tripadvisors reviewers look for.Mak
How to make a booking?
Good news, it’s open 7 days a week!
Requests for same-day reservations must be sent before 15:00.
After 15:00: please contact us directly on tel +47 22 44 68 74