Chef Mathias Dahlgren grew up on his family farm in northern Sweden, grasping an early and influential immediacy between food, family, and the land. Indeed, helping his mother and grandmother perform simple chores on the farm inspired a love for the kitchen that remains with Dahlgren to this day. Put simply, he learned the taste bread and butter should have, a lesson he has never forgotten.
Not simply a dreamer, Dahlgren built upon this idyllic start with serious training. He studied at the hotel school of Umeå before working in well known restaurants in his country. Dahlgren then left Sewden to work in Spain, where he developed a surprising, lasting love for its people and food. In 1996, he opened up his own establishment, Bon Lloc (“Good Place” in Catalan), with his wife Anna. There, he served Latin-European cuisine that drew inspiration from Spain, France, and Italy. While opening Bon Lloc, Dahlgren spent 600 hours training for the Bocuse d’Or, and in 1997 he became the first Swedish chef to win first place at the event.
Dahlgren has been awarded the Kocharas Kock (Chef of Chefs) title four times. In 1998, the Michelin Guide awarded one star to Bon Lloc, while the Swedish Culinary Academy gave him its Gold Medal. And in 1999, he immortalized his success with his first book, Mathias Dahlgren Kockbok. He has since been awarded a succession of “Best Restaurant” titles by Gourmet Magazine, appeared in several TV programs, written articles, and given lectures to audiences eager for his expertise. After the sale of Bon Lloc, Dahlgren opened the renowned Mathias Dahlgren in Stockholm where, as expected, he did not have to wait long before being awarded two Michelin stars.