The urban farming trend is growing stronger by the day (no pun intended) and many restaurants start their own gardens. Upper House took it one step further and added two eco-certified beehives on the rooftop. The idea came out of a sustainable devotion and a honeycomb patterned ceiling that has come to play an important part.
"Of course we had to have bees on our rooftop too! We use honey at breakfast and honeycomb in the evening for drinks and desserts. It's a classic flavour," says Krister Dahl, Executive manager at Gothia Towers restaurants.
But it's not all buzzing on the rooftop as the team grows everything from herbs and salads to radish and cabbage. The rooftop farming-idea took form when Dahl and his colleagues launched the ground floor restaurant West Coast in 2012. It was the first restaurant to recieve the certification Svenskt kött ("Swedish meat") and they started a collaboration with the non-profit organisation Göteborgs räddningsmission (the Rescue Mission) to sponsor two greenhouses at the farm Björlanda Prästgård.
What reactions have you had from your guests regarding the bee-keeping?
They enjoy getting the full picture by letting us tell them more about the bees or even get a "29 imagine", the 29th floor-view of the rooftop farm and hives, so it's all positive. However, some guests have asked how the bees can survive up here. But they can fly 150 metres up and cover an area of around 2 kilometres. So, just look at all the gardens in Örgryte and Liseberg. They get to borrow our bees too.
It's a amazing to stand on the 29th floor and see the chef go outside to harvest some ingredients.
Do you think more restaurants will follow the trend?
Many restaurants are already setting up small allotments. We work closely with Björlanda prästgård and buy all our eggs from there and in apple season we also make must. It's nice to be able to give something back.
While we're talking about greenery – do you have a local favourite oasis?
The manor Råda säteri (just outside of Gothenburg) has literally exploded with greenery and all the gardens and farming around there. It's a very nice place with a café, the garden Gerbianska trädgården and a nearby lake.
Other restaurants going green on their roofs are for example Taverna Averna on Tredje Långgatan, Clarion Hotel Post's restaurants vRå and Norda, but also the Gothenburg opera. They have beehives, honey production and solar cells.