Heartwood Norway.
Honed by hand.

Words: Esben Holmboe Bang
Stories

Everything we do is about trying to evoke a certain sensation and emotion; not just on the finished plate, but in the way we approach our cuisine and service. Therefore, the tactility, texture and aesthetic of the elements that our guests come in direct contact with is very important. The experience you get when eating a dish is, for me, very much determined not just by the actual flavour profile but also how you eat the dish. In fact, we have experienced that the flavour profile of a dish changes radically by how the first “touch” is initiated, whether it is by hands or utensils of differing materials.

For example, with our porridge and bread servings we found that having a wooden spoon and knife not only enhanced the sensation of its flavour, but also served to make the dishes more approachable and rooted in a sense of historical context. This often happens before the guest has even tasted the food. The first touch of the wooden spoon as it breaks the surface of the porridge, or seeing the knife cleave through the rich butter are vitally important aspects in creating the right experience. 

We were delighted to collaborate with Heartwood Norway run by Brynjulf Krokstrand to help us form the expression of these wooden elements. Brynjulf’s dedication, eye for detail and uncompromising focus on finding the right direction has been crucial in this process.

“I prefer to use Nordic wood that is mostly local, and many of the materials I use have been collected by me. We have many beautiful hardwoods in this region that posses good features for crafting a beautiful finished product." Brynjulf Krokstrand

Here are some words from Brynjulf himself on the finished product: “I prefer to use Nordic wood that is mostly local, and many of the materials I use have been collected by me. We have many beautiful hardwoods in this region that posses good features for crafting a beautiful finished product. The spoons and butter knives I created for Maaemo are made from flamed birch from a small sawmill in eastern Norway.

The wood is first roughly shaped with a variety of hand tools and then further honed by hand. Maaemo’s logo is then branded onto the product, before I apply cold pressed linseed oil to act as a hardening agent that is free from artificial additives. Maaemo’s design brief called for a clean and modern design, while allowing for more formal design elements that refer to traditional Norwegian crafts. This pure interpretation really allows the material to come into its own.”

Follow Heartwood on Instagram for more lovely wooden products and inspiration.