Wine review: Dopff Riesling Reserve

26 01 2013

Vintage 2011 Dopff Riesling Reserve ‘Cuvee Europe’ comes from Alsace, Dopff au Moulin vineyards, France. It is commonly available at Royal Ravintolat restaurants Teatteri, Strindberg and Salutorget, Helsinki Finland, which we regularly visit. Also have tasted this white wine quite often at those restaurants.


Pale yellow, acidity can be seen quite well in the glass


Fruits and raisin, some apple and petrol


Crisp dry taste, light petrol and herbs, acidity follows in after taste

Dopff Reisling Reserve

Facts & figures:

Alcohol: 12,5% by volume
Extract: 24 g/l
Acidity: 6,6 g/l
Energy: 80 kcal/100 ml (330 kJ/100 ml)
Closure: metal screw cap

Excellent wine for white fishes and shell fish. Suitable also for aperitif before good dinner. However favourite rieslings come from Austria and Germany.


Wine review: Hewitson Miss Harry

25 01 2013

Miss Harry comes from nick name of Harriet Hewitson, daughter of Dean Hewitson. Like the name, not too complicated. Wine comes from Barossa Valley, Australia.

Tasted vintage 2010 grapes are GRENACHE (44 %), SHIRAZ (39 %), MOURVÈDRE (8 %), CINSAULT (4%) and CARIGNAN (4%). Note: Alko is selling vintage 2010 but grape information is misleading, it is older vintage 2009.


The colour of 2010 Miss Harry is dark red; young vintage no hints of brown color


The aroma was quite difficult to describe, found red/black berries, spices and herbs. Because of grape selection really difficult task


The palate is full, showing ripe black berries and maybe plums. But again, amount of different grapes made the task difficult. The finish was long and fresh. However, wine that I liked.

Miss HarryHewitson Miss Harry

Facts and figures:

Alcohol: 14% by volume
Extract: 29 g/l
Acidity: 5,5 g/l
Energy: 90 kcal/100 ml (370 kJ/100 ml)
Closure: metal screw cap

Miss Harry is tasty red wine, suits perfectly for red meat. But grape selection opens up many food choises.


Taste of Italy

22 01 2013

As being fans of Italian food like to prepare basic Antipastis on monthly basis. This time these included Prosciutto Crudo, Salami Picante, Mozzarella di Buffala, Rucola and grilled Zucchini.

Antipastis were complemented with Chianti Baroncini in an old fashioned bottle which is available at Alko’s.


Had noticed earlier in our favourite supermarket Piadina flatbreads and decided to prepare them. Piadinas stuffed with mozzarella, prosciutto crudo and rucola are excellent snacks. Unfortunately flatbreads were glutein free and therefore did not work so well because they crumbled and were too thick. However, after warming very tasty reminder of holidays spent in Italy.


Grapes of Chianti were SANGIOVESE (85 %), CANAIOLO (10 %), MALVASIA (5 %). Suitable red wine for antipastis and piadina and even for pastas. Would not recommend for red or game meats.


Buon Appetito!

Restaurant review: Sundmans Krog

20 01 2013

Sundmans KrogSundmans Krog II

Opposite of the Old Market Hall are two restaurants with almost similar names, G.W.Sundmans and Sundmans Krog. However, difference is quite huge. Restaurant G.W. Sundmans used to have Michelin star but is still one of the most sophisticated restaurants in Finland.

Sundmans Krog is more laid-back restaurant with one speciality, fish buffet which you can order for starter or for main course. For main course it is maybe too modest, might need some additional dishes.

Fish buffet at Sundmans Krog

Because of a freezing weather (-15C degrees) had to get something warm to drink and were served rum and cassis toddies. No more mulled wines at this time of the year.

However started one menu with Sundmans Krog’s traditional fish buffet with dill potatoes. Potatoes were brought to the table and there were like just picked up but spiced salmon was too salty.

Fish plate

For main course ordered Salmon Wallenberg with Cauliflower and Remoulade sauce. Usually this traditional food is made from meat. Changed Cauliflower to vegetables which hopefully did not change ensemble. Delicious combination!

Salmon Wallenberg

For dessert some Sorbet with fruits because all other desserts included milk products. Simple but tasty.


One menu consisted of HELSINKI MENU with WINE MENU.

SAVUSTETTUA SILAKKAA, FENKOLIA JA KATAJANMARJALLA MAUSTETTUA LEIPÄÄ Smoked Baltic Herring, fennel and bread spiced with juniper berries. When waitress opened lid of the container, gray smoke rised from it with smoky smell, great experience!

Baltic herring

YLIKYPSÄÄ KARITSAN POTKAA, KUIVATTUA PUOLUKKAA JA “SÄRÄJUUREKSIA” Overcooked Lamb Shank with dried cowberries and roasted root vegetables. Really delicious, lamb melted in the mouth and you could have eaten it with spoon.

Lamb shank

“OMENAPIIRAKKAA”, VANILJAVAAHTOA JA VANILJAJÄÄTELÖÄ Apple Pie, Vanilla Foam and Vanilla Ice Cream. Too small portion for me! Could have eaten 4 of them because it was just so scrumptious

Apple pie


Riesling `L´, Dr. Loosen, Mosel, Germany – matched well with starter

Chemins de Compostelle, Antoine Moueix, France – Merlot was too strong grape for mild flavors in main course

Moscato, Gatti piero, Italy – apple pie did not need wine, just more pie….

Restaurant Sundmans Krog was popular despite of the freezing weather even at late lunch. Stockmann has offer menu for its regular customers and this offer seemed to be popular. Would change backgroud music from Glenn Miller to more classical music because of the old building and decor. Waitering was partly professional and partly uncertain depending on the waitress.


English menu has not been updated when it changed 1st of January.

If you get window table you can see Market Hall and Market Square.

Sundmans Krog window

15 BEST restaurants 2012 in Tallinn (Estonia)

19 01 2013
It takes only 2 hours to cruise to Tallinn, which makes it easy to visit there regularly. Nowadays there are lots of good restaurants in Tallinn, worth to visit for that reason.
Ranking below is made by Eesti Maitsed based on the votes of the key employees of various Estonian restaurants. Each voter compiles a personal list of 7 restaurants that he or she thinks are the best in Estonia. The voters must have visited these places and the list cannot include the voters’ employers or restaurants related to their personal property. List includes all restaurants in Estonia but I have picked up Tallinn restaurants.

Winner, restoran Tchaikovsky, definitely earns 1st place. It is part at hotel Telegraaf. We were impressed by it’s style, food and service. Restoran Ö has won 1st place 2009 and 2010 in Tallinn but still was really sophisticated year and a half ago but has lost several places. Both restaurants as well as Chedi, Bocca and La Bottega are owned by Sparkling Group

2. Chedi
3. Leib
4. Moon
5. Neh
6. Bordoo
7. Ribe
8. Bocca (

9. La Bottega
10. Dominic
11. Ö (below, visited 30.7.2011 but did not make review)

12. MEKK (

MEKKrestoran MEKK

13. Horisont

14. Cru
15. F-Hoon

Whole list can be found via link

Taste of Mexico

14 01 2013

Nachos and Fajitas, basic Mexican dishes, taste always delicious (if you like strong spices).

Basic elemens for perfect Nachos are Salsa sauce, Jalopenos, Creme Fraiche and Grated Cheese. More heavy you get if you add minced meat, chicken or peas. Mozzarella, although it is far from Mexican, suits perfectly for Nachos. 5 minutes in oven and you are ready to eat everything what is on baking tray. Therefore it is important not to make too big portion!

Of course you must sip Mexican beer like Corona or Sol with slice of lime.


Best Fajitas you make by using Chicken breast, red Onion, sweet Pepper, fresh Avocado, Salsa sauce, Creme Fraiche, Jalopenos and Tortillas. Have found really tasty Fajitas powder which quarantees our Fajitas are better than in restaurants. Guacamole is best to make yourself, it does not need anything else than avocado and some lemon juice in order to avoid darkening.


In Helsinki there are not actually really good Mexican restaurants. You can try Cantina West, so far best Fajitas eaten or Santa Fe, popular summer terrace now owned by S-Group as well as Amarillo’s. Hard Rock Cafe serves pretty good Nacho’s but without being too arrogant, think our home made Mexican Nacho’s and Fajita’s beat the ones in nearby restaurants.


12 01 2013

KUNGFU GIRL – what a name for a riesling wine!

First time tasted this wine in the summer 2012 during vacation and was not impressed. Propably bottle had been open too long because acidity was lost and it had not been stored in enough cold place. Also as a fan of really dry rieslings Kungfu Girl tasted too sweet (see sugar amount below).

Second time with asian food changed opinion. Enough well chilled and wine tasted already as a aperitif promising.

Wine comes from Charles Smith Wines, Columbia Valley. New wine producer made his succes really quickly winning prizes.

When local wine magazine Viinilehti, nominated Kungfu Girl as one of the three best white wines 2012 and finally selected it as a winner, wine ran out of Alko’s; very typical if wine gets some publicity in Finland.

Kung Fu GirlKung Fu Girl RieslingDSC03311DSC03314

Light yellow with some light green, close to colour of straw

Fruits, a hint of petrol but much more less that most rieslings

Some minerals and quite sweet fruits compared to drier rieslings, easy aftertaste

Facts and figures:

Alcohol: 11% by volume
Extract: 39 g/l
Sugar: 18 g/l
Acidity: 7,8 g/l
Energy: 80 kcal/100 ml (320 kJ/100 ml)
Closure: metal screw cap


Wine was promoted heavily at Food, Wine and Good Living event in October 2012. Do not try with white meat fishes or shell fish. Asian spicy food is perfect match!


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