Update 5/15/19: Fet Fisk has returned from Summer break. The next Fet Fisk dinner is Monday, August 19.
Update 5/13/19: Fet Fisk is back! Check out our update here.
As winter rages on, trade in the cold for cozy with Fet Fisk, Pittsburgh’s latest semi-private dining event. Hosts Sarah LaPonte and Nik Forsberg bring Scandinavian flavors to secret locales across the city. Signaled by a fish hanging above the door, Fet Fisk’s almost speakeasy-style dinners welcome fresh flavors and friendly atmosphere into Pittsburgh’s bleak winter.
Get Hygge with it
Fet Fisk is a private dinner event hosted every other Monday in various locations across Pittsburgh. Guests interested in attending should reach out to Fet Fisk on Instagram to secure a reservation as well as get the details on where that week’s dinner is being held. As a sort of roaming party, location changes nearly every time Fet Fisk occurs. Previous locations have included Workshop and Pigeon Bagel’s soon-to-open location in Squirrel Hill.
Due to the changing locale, every dinner is a different experience. Forsberg and LaPonte tackle each location with excitement, and working with limited time and space means Fet Fisk plans ahead as much as possible. To ensure there’s enough to eat to go around, reservations are strongly suggested. But, the vibe is anything but formal.
Long cozy tables, candlelight, and camaraderie in the space make Fet Fisk feel like a friend’s elaborate dinner party, explains LaPonte. “We’re not a restaurant, but we like restaurants.” LaPonte and Forsberg enjoy cooking, but at the end of the day, the experience is really about building community. “We want to have fun and make food and bring people together, in an unusual setting.”
If you’re unsure what to expect, take a look through Fet Fisk’s Instagram, curated by Forsberg, to get an idea of the atmosphere. With tongue in cheek captions and riffs on Scandinavian culture, Fet Fisk aims more for fun than formality. That’s been one of the biggest challenges, so far explains Forsberg: “It’s making it feel casual, approachable. That’s what we are, that’s what we would want in a dining experience.”
The Fet Fisk Menu: Swedish-ish & Seafood
The duo, who met while both working at B52 Cafe, initially brainstormed Fet Fisk during a road trip. “Seafood is kind of special thing people get excited about,” says Forsberg, who identifies as “Swedish-ish.” “That kind of played into the Nordic or Scandinavian food angle because while those regions aren’t necessarily known for really fine cuisine, they’re known for having access to really good fish and shellfish–cold water food.” Forsberg masterminds the menu each week; LaPonte designs the concept and runs the front of house.
The menu, which changes with each iteration, boasts a mix of Nordic-inspired foods and flavors, featuring fish and oysters. You’ll find classic menu items like smoked smelts, but also “Fjord Ramen” with pork belly and salt cod. Many menu ingredients are locally sourced, using bread from Crustworthy and produce from Tiny Seed Farm.
While Forsberg and LaPonte co-own Fet Fisk, they attribute much of its success so far to their friends willing to lend their expertise wherever they can. Annie DeFazio, who met Forsberg and LaPonte through B52, and Emma Honcharski from Pigeon Bagel assist LaPonte with front of house responsibilities. Whitfield butcher and sous chef Steve Beachy helps on the kitchen side, Elliot Swauger owns oyster shucking, and Marshall Hart serves as the event’s carpenter when a new location calls for building.
The Details: How to attend the next Fet Fisk Dinner
Ready to get hygge with it? Fet Fisk’s next dinner takes place on Monday, March 4. Direct message Fet Fisk on Instagram for reservations and location information.
When: Every other Monday
Where: Various Locations
To attend a Fet Fisk dinner: Per the instructions on the Fet Fisk Instagram account, send a DM (direct message) to @Fet_Fisk for an invite.
More info: Fet Fisk’s Instagram