On Wednesday, October 10, The Franklin Institute ushered in the North American premiere of its newest blockbuster exhibition, Vikings: Beyond the Legend, with a gala event worthy of the bravest seafarers. On view in the exhibition are hundreds of artifacts from ancient Northern Europe, a full-size replica Viking ship, games, mythology and more.
From 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., cocktail hour lit up the atrium and Franklin Hall with the blue aura of a Nordic themed celebration. Tour guides took guests around the new exhibition and revelers sipped on the party’s signature cocktail, The Long Hello (champagne, apple brandy and St. Germain). The meal began with fennel pollen and honey walnuts and butlered hors d’oeuvres such as poached arctic char and salt preserved beet tartlets; dill poached shrimp on pumpernickel; and golden beet and ginger soup with rye served in shooter glasses. A smorgasbord presented a stunning array of smørrebrød—open-faced toasts with pickled vegetables and better jam, dried trout and radish and skyr and salmon roe with edible flowers.
Cocktails were followed by Scandinavian dinner stations with Danish salted cucumber salads, cured salmon roulade with smoked carrot and sorrel oil, and sweet and sour fricassee of short rib with plum gastrique, plus a vegetarian grilled tofu with creamed mushrooms and horseradish butter.
Guests danced in the Atrium to DJ sounds, while strolling performers kept the crowd in jovial spirits. An on-theme photo booth allowed attendees to dress up in Viking garb and commemorate the occasion.
Dessert time brought risalamande (chilled brown rice pudding with candied orange zest), blackberry pannacotta with Danish butter cookie, white chocolate and dried fruit bread pudding bites and chocolate sticky cake bites. Guests left with a to-go sweet: mini ginger donuts.
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