Restaurant review: Yes Yes Yes

21 01 2018

 

Yes Yes Yes is bar & restaurant where food just happens to be vegetarian or vegan. Spot was opened in November 2017 by the same chef’s who run popular restaurants The Cock and Holiday. One can not find meat or even fish on the menu but milk products in some dishes make restaurant vegetarian.

In the past there was McDonald’s in the same place. Transformation to totally different style and cuisine has been enormous. Most of the tables are by big open windows. Two bars are mostly meant for diners, to eat there does not require table reservation which is otherwise necessarily to make.

Menu includes so called Munchies, small snacks, Dips and Tandoori breads, Roots & Greens, Comfort Plates, Extras and Sweetie Pies. Pricing is simple; 10€, 12€ or 14€ per dish. But as food is more like shareable tapas dishes regarding to our waiter, you shall get all dishes almost at the same time to the table.

Recommendation for two: Order 4-5 dishes and share at least 2 of them. Sizes of dishes are like racion, not tapas. We ordered 6 dishes, which is a little bit too much although two of them were dips with tandoori bread.

First we got Comfort Plate Rigatoni, kuri squash, ricotta, pistachio pesto and burnt tomato and Roots & Greens Charred kale, persimmon, parsnip chips and toasted sesame. Pasta was cooked as it should be, not too much. Combination of cheese, pesto and tomato matched well with rigatone. From vegan dishes kale was the most attempting. Again chef”s were able to create a tour de force from vegetables.

After 5 minutes we got Munchies which were Halloumi fries, pomegranate and coriander and Cauliflower tempura, sweet pepper sauce. Although these should be small dishes there were actually the biggest one. Hallomi fries were tasty with sauce and spices but even for two this dish quite filling. Cauliflower was excellent, not too hard either soft. Interesting observation was that if felt and almost tasted like fried calamari.

And almost right away crispy tandoori breads with two dips Kuri squash, pine nuts, sun-kissed apricot and ginger and Beetroot, aubergine, blood orange and olive oil. Dips were interesting, first one was almost sweet and we even thought that apricots were figs. Dark dip paired better with breads, at least in our mouths.

Wines have been chosen by Riikka Sukula who owns a wineyard in Italy with his husband, TV celebrity chef Jyrki. Ordered Spanish Alma de Casa (Soul of the House), which is produced from Monastrell (80%), Cabernet Savignon and Syrah grapes. Full-bodied red wine with hints of dark berries. As it has been stored for few months in oak barrels, it made the wine more round.

Yes Yes Yes will be the most popular vegetarian/vegan restaurant in Helsinki this year. Although it is January and for some people the month one tries to avoid alcohol which also leads to less visit to restaurants, restaurant was packed full most of the time. Even the bar chairs were occupaid by diners.

Food is excellent, requires extra innovation to prepare dishes with not so known ingredients. And for vegans very welcomed new spot.

Because all dishes came almost at the same time and our table was full of plates, might make sense to order first few and after eating those order more.

REVIEW: FOOD 4/5 – SERVICE 4-/5 – OVERALL GRADE 4+/5

https://www.yesyesyes.fi/





Restaurant review: Hard Rock Cafe Helsinki

5 11 2016

Hard Rock Cafe Helsinki was established in October 15, 2012. It’s location is excellent, opposite to Stockmann Department store by Aleksi street. Dining room and bar are at the 2nd floor and shop at the 1st floor.

All restaurants must develop their operations in order to attract new customers and keep existing. Visited HRC in October 2016, when they had special vegetarian menu. Hard Rock Cafe Helsinki was celebrating Vegetarian Awareness Month by expanding its legendary menu offerings and introducing brand new limited-time meatless options.

For starters there were no vegan options available, so ordered only main courses.

Vegan main course was KEFTA BURGER A house made burger of potato, shiitakes, portabellas, balsamic glaze, barley, thyme and seasonings served on a burger bun with a sriracha hummus, arugula and tomato.

It is now easier to find vegetarian/vegan options in restaurants in the Helsinki area.  It was a nice option having a vegan burger made from other ingredients than lentils or chick peas.  The burger was juicy, and hummus was a good addition to the dressing.

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For meat dish ordered ORIGINAL LEGENDARY® BURGER Topped with smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, golden fried onion ring, crisp lettuce and vine-ripened tomato.
Every half-pound burger (225g) is made with HRC proprietary blend of premium grade beef. Grilled medium well and served on toasted brioche with seasoned fries.
Must say that quality and taste of burger had improved a lot compared to last visit. Burger itself was enough “moist”, couple of times it had been quite dry making it almost difficult to eat. Also fries were well prepared, big enough not to be over cooked.

 

For wine had young 35 South Organic Cabernet-Carmenère-Merlot 2015. Wine was full-bodied, medium tannic, with blackcurrant and blueberry notes. For vegeterian month organic wine suited well.
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Below is a picture of Vegetarian Menu.   It could easily become part of the regular menu as they did a great job at putting the menu together.


Hard Rock Cafe chain is quite successful because of concept and food (if you do not dislike that kind of dishes). Service is quick and polite and always chance to practice english.

Once there was even Planet Hollywood in Helsinki, but global restaurant concept did not survive.

O’Learys has established restaurant in the capital area. Tries to serve similar food with sports concept. But unfortunately food is not at the level what HRC can offer

REVIEW: FOOD 4/5 – SERVICE 4-/5 – OVERALL GRADE 4/5

Some examples of decoration….

 

http://www.hardrock.com/locations/cafes3/menu.aspx?LocationID=627&MIBEnumID=3





Restaurant review: Grön

25 03 2016

The idea behind Grön, which was opened in November 2015, was to create tasty, focused, plant-based and  inspiring food that concentrates on high-quality ingredients. All this is prepared in an atmosphere that should make guests feel relaxed, happy and welcome.

 

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Restaurant offers a small selection of à la carte dishes as well as a four course “Grön Menu”. The food is based on seasonal, organic, wild and the Scandinavian produce.

The name Grön (Green) also means that vegan and vegetarian dishes should be in major role. With only about 20 seats, Grön is one of the smallest restaurants in Helsinki. Therefore, with growing popularity, it is wise to reserve table in time.

For starters had vegan ones, Beetroot with beetroot leaves, woodruff flavours and beetroot broth and Broad beans “Nordic hummus”, seeds, sprouts and fermented buckwheat bread.

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The idea of serving beetroot in different formats sounds brilliant but the uppermost taste was raw root. Dish was also quite difficult to eat due to long beetroot slices and big salad leaves after broth was poured on the vegetables. Must be careful not to splash red color on clothes.

Nordic hummus consistency was more like mashed potatoes.  Not very tasty.  What made this dish worth ordering was the buckwheat bread.  The consistency of this bread was very meaty; hard to believe it was bread.

For main courses had Smoked chicken with onion, jerusalem artichokes and a sauce of roasted chicken skins and as vegetarian option Celeriac cooked in grain crust  with grain “porridge” and hazelnut.

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Smoked chicken was cooked properly as it was not dry. Also the taste of sauce was perfect and paired well with vegetables. The amount of potatoes was bounteous and partly concealed the taste of artichokes.

The main course…..Seeing the word “porridge” in quotation marks, made it sound like it would be porridge like, not actual porridge. To make things worse, the consistency was more like baby food.  If you’re vegan, make sure to ask to leave the cheese out.  It is not included in the list of ingredients, but it was mentioned by the waiter that it was what “made the dish”.

Restaurant has separate wine list in a small notebook and you could enjoy vintage wines, but the prices are not so affordable. Decided to order from “standard” list organic Marcosaras’s Chiopperttino, which tasted like a combination of cigar box and sheep stables. Very organic, very original would say.

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Restaurant Grön is trendy place and it’s chef Toni Kostian was chosen as chef of the year at Gastro Fair in Helsinki on 18th March 2016. Gastro arranged competition between cook’s. As restaurant is small, one interesting detail of taking advantage of all facilities, is wine cabinet in toilet.

Service was polite and easy-going. When it comes to food, unique dishes and way to prepare them will keep restaurant busy for many months to come.

 

REVIEW: FOOD 3+/5 – SERVICE 4+/5 – OVERALL GRADE 4-/5

http://www.restaurantgron.com/





Restaurant review: Copas y Tapas – revisit 2016

5 01 2016
Copas y Tapas is an independent family-owned business which serves Spanish food and wines with Finnish flavor. Restaurant is located at Fabianinkatu, close to Senate Square. Dining rooms are at two levels and both areas are usually crowded.
Copas y Tapas downstairs

Copas y Tapas downstairs

Copas y Tapas upper dining room

Copas y Tapas upper dining room

 

Have visited Copas y Tapas several times before; earlier reviews can be found by using search. Previous visits have been successful, therefore expectations were again high. Usually it is difficult to get table in short notice but maybe 2nd January after New Year was not the most popular restaurant day.

Three course dinner costs 43-47 € including “tapas” plate as starter, main course which can be chosen from 4 alternatives and dessert. 5€ additional payment for meat dishes.

Of course you need some time to make a decision what to order and best way to speed up decision process is to order aperitif. Better to ask what waiters would serve. Asked for red wine and got L’Avi Arrufi from region Terra-Alta. Wine full of character and bouquet.

For tapas starters restaurant served  Soup, Filled capsicum and Smoked pork. Soup was warm and tasty, enjoyed it first. Then finished capsicum, which had some delicious tuna filling. And last smoked pork, which was with add-on’s great experience. Compared to previous visit starters looked similar, but soup was different and capsicum was filled with shrimps not with tuna.

Tapas at Copas y Tapas - reijosfood.com

You can choose from four different main courses, which differ almost every day depending on fresh ingredients available. Today alternatives were Meat of the Day, Steak of the Day (5€ extra), Fish of the Day and Vegetarian.

Fish of the Day, Arctic char, was superb with roots and swamps. And fish was enough big, which is not the fact in all restaurants.

Arctic char at Copas y Tapas - reijosfood.com

Dessert was this time Pannacotta with sorbet. Extremely delicious, sweet bite.

Pannacotta at Copas y Tapas - reijosfood.com

And with desserts, waiter or could even say sommelier, chose Gra a Gra Pinot Noir wine from Gramona. Not too sweet wine is produced as limited editions. So, recommend to taste it, if you have a chance.

gra a gra at Copas y Tapas - reijosfood.com

For vegeterians Copas y Tapas is perfect place. Restaurant conjured 3 course vegeterian menu which was amazing. Main course was based on portobello mushrooms but tapas starter was masterpiece.

Copas y Tapas is excellent affordable fine dining bistro in Helsinki restaurant scene, especially if you want to have serious discussion about Spanish wines. Bottles are always brought to the table and usually you can choose from two alternatives, which waiter have pre-selected for you matching to the food.

Fusion cuisine blends brilliantly best parts of Spanish and Finnish food cultures. Food is more Finnish or Scandinavian but served like in Spanish restaurant.

Service, really important part of experience, was excellent again.

REVIEW: FOOD 4,5/5 – SERVICE 5-/5 – OVERALL GRADE 4,5/5

Ruoka | Ravintola Copas y Tapas





King prawns with Asian flavour

9 05 2013

For shellfish lovers easy and quick portion to prepare for lunch or dinner. But also really tasty and healthy!

King prawnsKing Prawns

Recipe

King prawns (enough for each person)

4 garlic cloves

1 chilli

1/2 -1 fresh ginger (depending on size)

Oil to fry

Asian mint

Baby salad or similar

Lime slices

Low fat Yoghurt

Whole-grain rice  for side dish

(Soy sauce)

Cooking instructions:

If king prawns are frozen defrost them in cold water and dry on paper. If you have shells on prawns, take them away.

1) Chop garlic, chilli and ginger in small pieces and cut 2 lime pieces for each person

2) Put the water to boil for rice and rice to pot when water is hot (takes 10 minutes to cook, ready cooking instructions from package)

3) Pour youghurt in small scoop and set salad leaves, lime pieces and scoop on the plate

4) Put oil on frying pan, heat it and add garlic, chilli and ginger in order to glaze them

5) Add king prawns and fry 1-2 min from both sides (depends on the size of prawns)

6) Take rice out of water and set it on the plate and add some soy sauce (if you like it)

7) Set king prawns on salad leaves which are already on the plate

8) Garnish with Asian mint

9) Enjoy with good white wine!

Ingredientsking prawns

Perfect wine due to Asian spices is KungFu Girl Riesling which was reviewed 12.1.2013.

Bon Appetit! Hyvää Ruokahalua!








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