Restaurant Juuri serves fantasic Finnish experience
As a self-proclaimed “foodie,” I absolutely love it when I discover a restaurant that can play a symphony for my taste buds, while at the same time exciting my other senses. During a trip to Helsinki, Finland, I had an opportunity to dine at Restaurant Juuri, an authentic European-feeling bistro providing a warm, inviting and intimate ambiance–which set the stage for a gastronomic experience I won’t soon forget.
Juuri is located off a quiet, cobblestone street with a minimalistic storefront and signage. The large arched bay windows both invite diners, while providing views of passersby. The name “Juuri” means “roots” in Finnish and has sort of a duality to its meaning—in addition to the food being inspired by Finnish heritage, much of the produce they use is root vegetables. Juuri is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year and their longevity is certainly due in part to their commitment to producing a first-class dining experience.
The amuse bouche for the evening was a trout tartare, a single bite that simply teased my palate. As I painfully, but enthusiastically waited for my next course, I sipped a bit of sparkling wine made from local berries. Playing host to my wine were three distinct artisan breads that come from a bakery just down the street. Each bite of the bread was graced with a generous layer of hand-churned butter.
Since I was in Finland, I wanted to try everything Finnish, so I asked my waiter to recommend some seasonally inspired and locally produced dishes. Juuri serves an array of Sapas, which if I understood correctly, is a Finnish play on the Spanish word, Tapas…loosely meaning, “small plate/portion.” This was the perfect opportunity to try a variety of Finnish dishes, while not stuffing myself. For my starters, I tried these three Sapas:
- 10-hour turnip with Swiss cheese and linen seed.
- Sugar salted trout with red currant and licorice.
- Grout sausage with lingonberry and mustard seeds.
For my entree, I had a local Whitefish with Whitefish potato cake and a roe vinaigrette. This delectable dish was further enjoyed by a local pilsner brewed by a solo artisan brewmaster.
I don’t often opt for dessert while dining alone, but in this case the portions were modest, allowing me enough room to indulge. I had the Brioche chocolate pudding with ice cream and parsnip puree. Yeah, I know, the parsnip sounded odd to me too, but let me tell you, it worked! The dessert dish had an almost yin and yang symbiotic thing goin’ on…it was both unique, and delicious. The entire meal, from the ambiance, the service to the taste and artfully presented dishes was sensational.The folks at Juuri use authentic flavors infused with passion and the skill to use what the local lands provide. If you’re a foodie like me and find yourself in Helsinki, don’t miss a chance to dine at Restaurant Juuri.
If you’ve ever been to Restaurant Juuri in Helsinki, Finland, please leave a comment below and let me and my readers know what you like best, including your favorite dishes.
Restaurant Juuri Information:
Phone: +358 50-4398465
Address: 27, 00130 Helsinki, Finland
Thanks for the great return-of-the memories story. I’m a finn who lives in US and can unfortunately only visit Juuri when I go back to Helsinki (once a year). Your pictures brought back some great memories, I’m practically drooling here 🙂 Really don’t have any favorites because everything I’ve ever had there has been fantastic and they change their menu frequently. Just the bread alone…! They also usually carry a nice selection of biodynamic wines.
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