The Finnish people have long been appreciated for proudly showing off their culinary skills in combining traditional fare with contemporary tastes.
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and Jacques Chirac didn't exactly have the nicest things to say about Finnish food. But they had to eat their own words, when Helsinki's restaurant culture rose to be among the best in Europe.
Compared to most of Europe, the Finns consume a lot less red meat and more of fish and poultry. Bread, mostly whole meal is a very essential part of their diet. The use of vegetables, arctic wild berries, fish (Baltic herring) and poultry are distinctively featured in typical Finnish dishes. Discover the heart of Finnish cuisine at some of the restaurants listed below.
Located in a restored historic imperial mansion, Sundman's was originally the home of merchant ship captain Gustaf Wilhelm Sundman. The grand interiors impresses with moulded ceilings, chandeliers and paintings depicting the Finland of the 19th century. The main restaurant on the second floor serves light, modern fare designed and prepared by in-house Chef Jarmo Vähä-Savo and his staff.
Address: Eteläranta 16 00130 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday: 11:00 am to 2:30 pm
and 5:00 pm to midnight, Saturday: 6:00 pm to midnight
Tel.: +358 9 61285400
Luomo serves global cuisine prepared from local ingredients sourced from small as well high-end producers. The dishes are inventive and a modern take on classic cuisine. With a seating arrangement for only about 46 people, this small restaurant remains full to capacity and reservation is necessary.
Address: Katrinegatan 1 00170 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Tuesday to Saturday: 6:00 pm to midnight
Tel.: +358 9 1357287
Farang ( Visit Site )
Considered one of Helsinki's best restaurants, Farang serves modern Asian cuisine, within the historical premises of the Helsinki Art Gallery. The restaurant focuses mostly on Southeast Asian cuisine, with influences from Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia. Owners Tomi Björck and Matti Wikberg are known to comprehend the secrets of Asian cuisine for an exclusive dining experience. Their restaurant is versatile and adaptable to accommodate various kinds of events.
Address: Ainonkatu 3 00100 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Saturday and Sunday: 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Tel.: +358 10 322 9385
Sipuli ( Visit Site )
Situated in a 19th century restored brick warehouse, Sipuli takes its name from the onion shaped domes of the Russian Cathedral that forms a picturesque backdrop to the lovely restaurant. The restaurant is known to combine traditional Nordic flavours with inventive international cuisine. Its large banquet hall and pleasant and airy Winter Garden makes it a popular choice for conferences and banquets in Helsinki.
Address: Kanavaranta 7 00160 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday: 11:30 am to 3:00 pm
Tuesday to Saturday: 6:00 pm to midnight
Tel.: +358 9 61285500
Kuu ( Visit Site )
Established in 1966, Kuu delves into Nordic classics, prepared with traditional Finnish ingredients. With 60 seats and additional 25 outdoors in the summertime, the restaurant cares to serve Finnish specialties such as salmon, reindeer, and Baltic herring.
Address: Töölönkatu 27, Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday: 11:00 am to midnight
Saturday: 1:00 pm to midnight, Sunday: 1:00 pm to 10:00 pm
Tel.: +358 9 27090973
Kuurna ( Visit Site )
Kuurna is a small restaurant placed in a narrow street in downtown Helsinki. With only 20 seats and a cosy ambience, Kuurna delivers a personal touch and essence of Finland. The two chefs, Heikki Purhonen and Antto Melasniemi have limited their menu to only three each of starters, mains and desserts, so that they can concentrate on what they have. But their menu does change weekly and new additions do make it to the list. Reservations are compulsory keeping in the mind the space crunch and popularity of the place.
Address: Kruununhaka Meritullinkatu 6 00170 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Tuesday to Friday: 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm and at 8:30 pm,
Saturday: 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm and at 8:30 pm
Tel.: +358 910 2818241
Chef & Sommelier ( Visit Site )
Chef Sasu Laukkonen, the think tank behind Chef & Sommelier has put all his energy into inventing recipes that require organic, handmade and fresh ingredients. The restaurant serves three, five, seven or nine course menu with a passion that is felt throughout the dining room.
Address: Huvilakatu 28 00150 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 6:00 pm
Tel.: +358 400 959440
Kolo ( Visit Site )
Kolo, situated on Fredrikinkatu, serves delicious local cuisine made from the freshest and high quality ingredients. The restaurant chef and staff put in a lot of heart in presenting their dishes, so sometimes the service does become slow paced. But for taste (culinary & interior design) and atmosphere, Kolo takes all the points.
Address: Fredrikinkatu 37 00120 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Lunch: Monday to Friday: 11:30 pm to 2:30 pm,
Dinner: Tuesday to Saturday: 5:00 pm to midnight
Tel.: +358 44060 1661
Muru ( Visit Site )
Muru, the bistro that was selected as Finland's Best Restaurant of the Year promises well-prepared food made from freshly sourced ingredients. The menu keeps on changing all the time but offers popular specialities like Bouillabaisse, Risotto and Chocolate fondant. Muru even boasts of a wonderful collection of European wines and champagnes to accompany their classic meals. The kitchen is lead by famous chefs Sir Lintsi and Chef Henri Alen.
Address: Fredrikinkatu 41, 00120 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Tuesday to Saturday: 5:00 pm to 11:30 pm
Tel.: +358 942891213
Konstan Molja ( Visit Site )
Named after the Latin word for pier, Konstan Molja had a humble opening in 1981 when the owner decided to celebrate traditional Finnish food. The interiors depict pre-World War II lives and that of Karelian people through photos, items and other memorabilia. What set the restaurant apart are their lunch and dinner buffets, which have become pretty rare these days.
Address: Hietalahdenkatu 14, 00180 Helsinki, Finland
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday: 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm, Saturday: 14.00 pm to 11:00 pm
Tel.: +358 9 6947504