Restaurant review: Pirate Helsinki

21 04 2013


Restaurant Pirate Helsinki is located in Southern Helsinki, Lauttasaari. First Pirate restaurant was established in Hanko and it serves also pizzas which Helsinki restaurant does not. You have to order food from the bar because there is no table service.  Pirate is a summer restaurant but it is open in December providing ambitious Christmas lunch with famous chefs.

Visited Pirate just when it has just opened also for weekends for the summer time.

For starters ordered Tomato Mozzarella and Parma Ham Rucola Bruschettas with Country French fries. Both bruschettas were nice and french fries really well made. Portion were quite big so they might even be enough for lunch but as we were having early dinner had decided to eat also main courses.

BruschettaMozarella bruschettaParma ham bruschetta

For main courses ordered Grilled king prawns, octopus with french fries, marinated vegetables and hollandaise sauce and Pirate smoked salmon with morel mushroom sauce and warm potato-vegetables salad. Prawns were OK but octopus was chewy; would also have prefered sauce in separate scoop. We had asked that for morel mushroom sauce…. Fish was well prepared as it was not smoked too long. Both portions included same looking side dishes; only difference was potatoes with salmon. Maybe too much oil used in vegetables.

Shrimps and octopusSmoked salmon

Restaurant Pirate is laid-back bistro and especially in the summer terrace is pleasant place to have a beer or two. Because restaurant was just opened we were the only diners at 0530PM. Because spring is so late all boats were still on the ground and surrounded restaurant.


If you visit Hanko some day, try Pirate because it is quite popular in the summer.


Restaurant Review: Messina (Spain)

29 05 2012

Restaurant Messina is ranked 2nd by TripAdvisor customer reviews in Marbella. Messina is quite small with about 30 seats. Made reservation 2 weeks ahead and restaurant called to reconfirm it same day as we dined. All seats were occupied by diners by 9PM, so obviously restaurant is very popular place.

Decor is modern, background music played was soft lounge e.g. like from Hotel Costes albums. Waitering was professional and polite, contents of each portion were described in detail.

Greetings from the kitchen were generous. Smoked Bressaola, Serrano and other stuff in stone “cup”; aroma of smoke was strong when waitress raised cover. Parsley with cheese in sticks with some additional ingredients and “ice cream” in glass cube were brilliant performance by the kitchen.

For starters we ordered Ingredientes de sushi y espuma de arroz – Sushi “de-fusion” with a rice foam and Cecina de Salmon – smoked dried salmon with tomatoes and olive powder. When sushi was brought, thick gray steam raised from small grid after waitress poured ginger liquid on it, amazing! And when soft tuna fish was dipped in rice foam, wasabi and ginger liquid, combination was marvelous. Salmon with add on’s was also enjoyable.

For main courses chose Salmonete con meloso de quinoa – Red mullet with sweet quinoa, shimps and octopus and Corvina de conil – Sea bass/Crocker. Both fishes were properly cooked and accompaniments suited well for them. Octopus under red mullet was crispy and asparagus under Crocker enough crisp also.

For wine we chose Radix rose wine. Almost red but still rose with strong bouquet and flavor. Good choice for wide taste of the world during dinner.

Dessert was Queso y vino – Cheese and wine. Four different types of cheese with 4cl glass of Pedro Ximenez sherry. Cheese and port or sherry are always unbeatable combination; with these cheeses sherry was bulls eye.

Restaurant Messina provides culinaristic and artistic dinner experience one should try if visiting Marbella.

REVIEW: FOOD 4,5/5 – SERVICE 4,5/5 – OVERALL GRADE 4,5/5 (Messina website is not up to date when it comes to a la carte list)

Restaurant review: Minos

24 02 2012

Restaurant Minos is 25 years old restaurant which serves traditional Greek food. For example you can get Tzatziki, Pita bread, Souvlaki, Moussaka and of course Ouzo for aperitive. Minos has pleasant covered terrace which can be used also in winter time as it is heated. We chose to dine at covered terrace and it was warm and pleasant place to dine; outside temperature was 0C degrees. In the summer Minos has own spot in popular Kamppi terrace area. Note that restaurant is not open on Sundays.

In Helsinki there are only few Greek restaurants as interest for asian food has increased a lot. Minos is one of the two genuine Greek restaurants focusing only on traditonal dishes; not mixing kitchens from other Mediterranean sea countries. Wine list is also based on Greek wines which provides fresh alternative for otherwise quite similar wine lists in many restaurants. But the prices for Greek wines….not the same as in Greece.

If you want to speak Greek language you can practice it in this restaurant as you could hear it all the time during dinner.

Recommend to book table by phone because we did not receive reply for email in 60 hours and decided to check the status by calling.  No comment about the email…Restaurant was full when we arrived at 6.30PM, so do not expect to get table without reservation.

For aperitives decided to taste Ouzo Plomari  and Campari. Ouzo is always fascinating….

For starters we ordered Octopus marinated in herb vinaigrette 7,90€ and Dolmades, vine leaves stuffed with rise and herbs 5,60€. Octopus was tasty and not too chewy. Dolmades were warm and at least did not seemed to be canned.

For main courses we had Catch of the day, grilled fresh fish which was Dorada with salad and Gyros, grilled pork with pita bread and tzatziki. Waitress offered to open the fish which is rare in Finland if fish is served as a whole. Must say that it is rare to get whole fish in generally in restaurants and if you are able to order it you have to fight by yourself to get rid of fishbones. Pork in gyros was fatless which is extraordinary compared to original Greek gyros taverns. So, you can happily order this portion although you would need to watch calories.

Minos is genuine Greek restaurant, would say most honest restaurant compared to many other country specific restaurants. (you can find english menu via link)

REVIEW: Food 4/5 – Service 4/5 – Overall grade 4/5

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