nordic crayfish party

 

Featuring Axopar team members: Henna Forsström, Brand & Marketing Manager, Magdalena Malmberg-Lindroos, Executive Coordinator, and Dan Uussaari, Group Business Controller

 

The ideal setting for a traditional Crayfish Party is a warm August evening, on a terrace overlooking the calm Baltic sea. All you need for a successful evening are some friends, a pile of freshly boiled crayfish, some beer, schnapps and a selection of your favourite traditional drinking songs.

 

The crayfish party is a highlight of the Nordic calendar, with the season running from early August into September. Most crayfish parties take place outdoors, making the most of the last days of a Scandinavian summer, and are celebrations for families and friends of all ages.

The crayfish are cooked in water, salt and sugar, often laced with ale and always with plenty of crown dill. They turn from black to red when cooked, ready to be served with fresh lemon, piled high on large platters. Along with the crayfish, various favourite side dishes include creamed chanterelle mushrooms on toast, freshly baked bread, topped with butter and slices of ‘Västerbottenost’ – a delicious cheese made in the Västerbotten province on the northeast coast

Crayfish are eaten cold, with one’s fingers, and sucking noisily to extract the juices is perfectly acceptable behaviour. To drink, one should expect plenty of beer and schnapps, which are downed with an accompanying song, ‘Helan Går’ being the most famous.

Eat, drink and be merry.
A crayfish party is an informal opportunity for friends and families to come together at the end of the summer season, to eat, drink, sing songs and have fun.

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Precious moments shared with friends become a lifetime of memories.

There’s no better reason to meet up with friends than an autumn crayfish party, and there’s no better location to escape to than a secluded island, away from the daily grind. Nordic boating culture very much revolves around island hopping, especially along the southern coastlines of Finland and Sweden, where there is a plethora of small islands.

True freedom is afforded by a shallow draft boat, meaning you can tie up alongside a small jetty or gently beach it wherever you find a secluded sand or shingle shore. Then it’s just a matter of unloading your feast and finding a suitable table or spot to spread your picnic blankets, while you enjoy great company in new surroundings.

You don’t need to cross an ocean or climb a mountain to find serenity or create lasting memories. These simple evenings in beautiful surroundings, shared with the important people in our lives, can create the precious moments that last us a lifetime.

A crayfish party is a wonderful, somewhat messy affair – a party you’ll never forget.
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If the perfect location for your party is overlooking the sea, then the perfect way to arrive in style is by boat.

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The ideal setting is a warm August evening, overlooking the calm Baltic sea.

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Expect plenty of beer and schnapps, which are downed with an accompanying song.

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Favourite side dishes include freshly baked bread, topped with butter.

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It’s common that guests contribute with side dishes, like a blueberry pie.

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If the perfect location for your party is overlooking the sea, then the perfect way to arrive in style is by boat.

The Nordic crayfish party – more than the sum of its parts

The crayfish party tradition of has been part of Swedish culture for some 100 years, spreading to neighboring Nordic countries over the years. And it’s not all about the bright red crayfish themselves. These parties bring people together and can take many shapes, from cozy family gatherings to more hedonistic parties that last well into the night. It’s common for guests to contribute with side dishes, like a salad, a pie or freshly baked bread, this communal custom being known locally as ‘knytkalas’, or ‘knytis’.

Whether you have Swedish roots or not, why not take the opportunity to gather family or friends together for a bit of Scandinavian socialising and host your own crayfish party? Start with your native language and see if you’re singing in Swedish by the end of the evening!

”Precious moments shared with friends become a lifetime of memories.”