Second Taste of Helsinki was arranged on 13-16.6.2013. Some of the restaurants had changed, this year present was 12 restaurants: Aito, Ask, Bistro O Mat, C, Demo, Gaijin, Juuri, Luomo, Muru, Olo, Smör and Toscanini with 36 tapas sized dishes to choose from. 3 out of 12 restaurants have Michelin stars (bolded ones).
Pleasant memories from last year and of course high expectations now.
On Saturday the amount of visitors was less than year ago and ordering food was therefore quite quick. We were in the first setting; maybe starting time was too early at 11.00 and wind was freezing although it was sunny day.
First ordered Smoked bream, potatoes and ramsons (Ask) and “EARTHQUAKE” – Organic egg 64,7°C with mushroom toffee (Luomo). Bream was basically, not so common Finnish fish to use in restaurants. Earthquake did not convince. Sweet toffee with salty egg did not match together at all. Of course it is tour de force to cook egg right but it did not help in this case.
FOOD REVIEWS: Ask 4/5 – Luomo 2/5
Then tried FRIED FRESH LAMB SAUSAGE, spring vegetable salad and mustard sauce (Muru) and SALMON from Rørvik with spring potatoes from Merimasku (Olo). Sausage was tast but a little bit chewy, had to bit few pieces too long. Salmon was best starter, fresh and perfect match with side dishes; best part of Finnish cuisine!
FOOD REVIEWS: Muru 4-/5 – Olo 5-/5
For “main” courses started with BRAISED WILD BOAR, turnip, carrot and spruce sprout (Aito). Delicious, all side dishes were perfect match. Only problems with plastic cutlery was carrot which was a little bit too raw for them and maybe a little bit too salty meat.
FOOD REVIEW: Aito 4,5/5
Then tasted SLOWLY BRAISED CHEEK OF CORN FED PORK, champignon, truffle and wrinkly carrot (Demo). Excellent braised pork and delicious sauce. Fresh Finnish vegetables supplemented ensemble.
FOOD REVIEW: Demo 4,5/5
Third food was NECK OF WILD BOAR with false morel pie and sauce of raspberry leaves (Juuri). This wild boar was best of “main” courses. Perfect composition and taste. Not too much side dishes, focus on itself.
FOOD REVIEW: Juuri 5-/5
Only dessert enjoyed was TOSCANINI’S TIRAMISÚ (Toscanini). Safe choice because did not want to try too exotic portions. Sorry for the finger, wind tried to throw away cardboard plates all the time and had to secure photo for few seconds.
FOOD REVIEW: Toscanini 4+/5
Did we were more critical now but chose really excellent portions last year. Of course you might make some mistakes when choosing from 36 dishes but would have liked to rank all tasted ones over 4,5. But enjoyed and congratulations to Olo and Juuri for excellent performance. Let’s see if there will be third year for Taste of Helsinki.
And again, lot’s of Markka’s spent! Do not budget anything as you shall exceed your budget anyway. Have fun, do not try to think too much coins.