Tuesday 3 January 2006

Royal Banquet Opens New Year's Court Session

 border=By The Copenhagen Post
The first royal banquet in two years features new faces as well as old faces in new places

For most of those attending Queen Margrethe's and Royal Consort Henrik's New Year's banquet on Sunday, it was a 'been there, done that' experience. For some of the ministers, judges, and other public figures, however, it was their first time being invited to the first of the queen's New Year's receptions.

Last year's banquet was cancelled out of respect for the victims of the tsunami in Southeast Asia, and national elections in February resulted in new faces in the PM's government, which meant that several ministers and other high ranking public officials were attending the royal banquet for the first time.

The queen holds court several times in the first days of the new year, each one for a different audience. Best known are the royal banquet, to which the highest ranking members of Danish society are invited, and the New Year's reception for the diplomatic corps.

In addition to members of the royal family, the queen invites government ministers and knights of the elephant order, such as business mogul Mærsk Mc-Kinney-Møller, to the royal banquet.

As a member of the royal family, Princess Alexandra, the ex-wife of the queen's youngest son, Joachim, was invited to the banquet. Instead of joining her former in-laws on the red carpet leading up to the main entrance of Amalienborg Palace, Alexandra entered through the same entrance used by the other guests.

Alexandra was, however, granted the honour of being the last guest to arrive.

Once seated, the guests dined on pheasant hen soup, grilled breast of pigeon with winter truffles and chestnut sauce, and a chocolate dessert with fig mousse.

On the wine list was the Rosenborg wine, which dates from 1597, as well as wine from Prince Henrik's vineyard in Cahors, France, and the same Champagne drunk during the royal wedding in 2004.

Source: jp.dk

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