Marion Ringborg is recognized as one of the most talented young chefs in Sweden. However, if you ask her what she does for a living, she'll say that her job is equal parts interiors, equal parts food: ‘I do a bit of everything.’
That's because she thinks of Garba, formerly a pop-up concept that recently found a permanent space in the center of Stockholm, as more of a brand than a restaurant. ‘It's not enough for chefs to think only about the food on the plate; there's too much competition nowadays,’ she says. ‘You have to do other stuff that has nothing to do with food. Your restaurant is your brand.’
She mentions two recent projects: a running club that Garba hosted alongside sportswear brand Adidas, and a collaboration with textiles and clothing company Marimekko. She also describes Garba as a ‘safe space’ – ‘the majority of people that work at Garba are women. You won't find any other restaurants like that.’
‘When people look at Garba, they think of us as a feeling, not just food,’ she continues. ‘The room, the atmosphere, the art, the interiors – it's all so important. I ask artists to put their paintings up. My mum does the flowers. People can see that we're social, that we're a brand. They want to be a part of that.’
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This special feature was first published in Courier issue 45, February/March 2022. To purchase the issue or become a subscriber, head to our webshop.