Monday, May 03, 2010


It's already few weeks ago we went to have a brunch in a German style of bakery/ cafe in Helsinki. I love Berlin and I miss its old sofas and arty cafes. Unfortunately there isn't any like that in Helsinki. Or is there? 

Well, not really, the atmosphere is closer to Charlottenburg than Prenzlauberg...or then a finnish version of it! Anyway the place looks good with its cosy and a bit strict German feeling, and the breads and cakes available from the bakery side make you hungry before you even sit. But actually getting a table for a sunday brunch isn't an easy thing. The place is easily crowded and perhaps because of this success it is also packed of few tables too much. Luckily the very friendly and effective staff will do its best to find you a chair somewhere.

Let's talk about the food: Lots of different home made breads, mostly all with seeds in them. The Finn of us of course regret the lack of dark bread, but honestly the 4 different kind of bread I tried there were good. Then all the basics are there: cheeses (edam slices, brie and blue cheese), veges, hams (even some tasty chorizo), smokes salmon...for the salty and yoghurt, fruits, dry fruits, cereals and pies for the sweets! This did not remind me Berlin bohemian café but a more general German feeling was there.

So as a results the brunch was good, it makes you happy for the rest of your day, and it is definitely a much better value than some other place suppose to be an institution in Helsinki.


Japanese restaurant Maruseki in Tampere had disappointed us some years ago with unfresh fish or the feeling that you might be eating fish, which is not fresh anymore. Now we wanted to give a second chance for this restaurant, which had moved to a new, bigger (!!) place in Tampere. I was pretty sceptical   beforehand - why restaurant moves to a bigger place, if they can't make good and fresh food in the small place, how they could do it in a big place?

Well, First May we went to give it a try.

For a starter we all took misoshiru, a miso soup. Nice and tasty soup for a starter or along your nigiris and makis. For the main course we had different kind of sushi sets plus some extra favourites like avocado makirolls, roe nigiris etc. As a drinks we had different kind of Japanese beers and ginger tea.

So what is the verdict? We took different kind of sushi set. One went for a fish free set, the other for a fish set.
The sushis were huge, maybe too big actually (needed 3 bites to be abbe to swallow a Inari sushi!) and the rice spent maybe too much time in the vinegar. But then the vegetarian sushi set (with some maki, avocado sushis, Inari, tamagoyaki...). Despite of their huge size most of them were pretty good. Only the tamagoyaki got a red card as the omelette definitly seemed to be escape form egg powder bag and not made out of real eggs.

But then, when it is about the usual essence of sushi, fish, things turned bad. Salmon sushi were ok, but not the best ever. then the ebi or the shiromis definitly did not look or taste fresh. And that's the sad thing. Maruseki has kind of monopoly in the centre of Tampere and does not make the needed effort to propose the best sushis in town to its customers. Moreover, the restaurant decoration itself give the same feeling: at first it look nice with all the separate rooms, but then when you look closer it looks that it is not finished or that it has been made in a very cheap way. The service though is very friendly and professional.

Tampere definitly deserve a better sushi place, so if you know one feel free to tell us which one! We love Tampere and we love sushi, would be great to love them at the same time!