Finnish Lappish food

a little while ago, my husband & i celebrated our 8th anniversary. by ‘celebrate’, i meant we ate out (of course). this time our place of choice was a restaurant in Helsinki which specializes in Finnish Lappish food, Saaga restaurant.

neither of us had been here before, but we once tried another restaurant from the same group which also serves Finnish delicacies. based on that nice experience, we decided to try this one as well.

when we arrived, the restaurant was just opened for the night, so it was still quiet. it was as if the whole restaurant was opened for us! 😀 we went to the balcony, and after ordering our food we took a look around.

the interior was made to look like someone’s wooden cabin in Lapland: thingamabobs made of wild animal bones, decorations made of animal skins, fishing equipments, pictures of the snowy Lapland. i don’t really like real animal fur myself, but as a decoration in this restaurant i think they serve the right mood. we felt like walking into someone’s home, who hunts wild animals to eat them & make use of them, just like people used to do in the old days. if you imagine what Santa Claus’ house would look like, it would probably look like this. 😀

so… what exactly is Finnish Lappish food? well, it’s actually kind of exotic, even to my Finnish husband. and since we don’t eat this kind of food everyday, we chose to try the most exotic ones we could find. namely bear and reindeer meat (with all sorts of berries).

after ordering, the waitress quickly served us a small first bite as a complimentary. then, the real appetizer came. it was an assorted mix of Lappish specialties.

that appetizer alone was worth the trip to this restaurant! i personally had never eaten any of those before, except for the fresh salad and mushroom salad. and i mean, every single thing was soooo good, you will want to lick the wooden plate clean.

next, the main course. we chose 2 different main courses, so that we could share them.

we could barely finish the main course, since they were so fulfilling! but they were so yummy so we ate as much as we could… and still moved on to the dessert afterwards. 😀

the cranberries were sour like crazy! 😀 it was painful to eat because of the sourness, yet so good that we couldn’t help taking more and more.

it was a really nice experience, starting from the atmosphere, to the friendly waitresses & waiters, and of course the delicious food. quite an unforgettable night for us both.

some people (mostly locals) might think the interior is cheesy, but we actually like it. the way the food were served was not as fancy as at some other overpriced restaurants, in fact it was rather modest. but that is just what Finnish people are like, modest and humble.

some would probably also think that there’s nothing special about Finnish food. well, i am a living proof that that is completely wrong! if you ever visit Helsinki, if you only have a short time but want to get to know traditional Finnish Lappish food that are actually good, then i highly recommend this place. you won’t regret it!

more info on Saaga restaurant here.

PS. sorry for the bad quality pics… it was dark and i only had my mobile phone camera, of course.

PPS. again, i am in no way paid by anyone to advertise this restaurant. this review comes from the heart. 🙂

it was a good week

1. managed to face and get over my second biggest worry of late. this worry had something to do with my work, and at the same time i also managed to finish what i had to do at work, so it’s quite an accomplishment. now i can finally relax and wait till Christmas time. 🙂

2. found out that there’s a German Flight Simulator magazine that made a review of my husband’s product and gave it a score ’95 out of 100′. a great achievement for a first-timer, indeed. 🙂

3. am having a proper weekend this week (which means i have both Saturday and Sunday off, which is uncommon for someone who works at a store).

4. we celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary by going to a Nepalese restaurant in the town. i got off early from work, and my husband came to pick me up. afterwards, we just went to a movie store to look around (yes, we are indeed movie geeks!), and when we got hungry enough we went to the restaurant. got a place right next to the window, in a bit of a secluded place, and it even had a candle on the table, so it was sort of a “romantic candlelit dinner” without it being intended to! it was the BEST FOOD EVER, from the appetizer down to the dessert. this restaurant was actually right across the restaurant we ate at on the day that we got married, so as we walked out after eating dinner, we saw that other restaurant too and got reminded of our wedding day 6 years ago even more. afterwards we went to see the bookstore (yes, we are also just plain geeks!) until the store closed for the night. after we arrived home and took a shower, we continued by watching a blu-ray movie. it was a nice, quiet celebration. 🙂

next up for the weekend: gonna make some joulutorttu (Christmas tarts), watch more movies on blu-ray, and tomorrow is Father’s day so we’ll be visiting my husband’s dad at his home to have lunch there. yes, it was (and still is, for now) a good week. 🙂

hari ini, dua tahun lalu

hari Jumat.
salju.
dingin.
deg2an.

keluar dari mobil, jalan ke gedung tujuan.
nyaris kepleset, karna ngotot pake spatu hak walopun jalanan beku & licin.
pegangan tangan biar ga jatuh.

menunggu di ruang tunggu.
kedua ortunya tandatangan surat kesaksian.
masuk ke ruangan.

upacara singkat dlm bhs Inggris.
tukeran cincin.
akhirnya resmi.

foto2 di dalam ruangan.
balik ke apartemen.
buka-buka kado.

ganti celana panjang biar anget, dan sepatu boot yg sama skali ga feminin.
pergi ke restoran.
satu makan yakiniku, satu makan sushi.
berdua makan es macha.

dapet buket bunga dari restoran, tapi kita berdua ga ada yg suka bunga.
akhirnya diadopsi oleh ibunya.
pulang.

senyum, puas, lega, senang.

masih, hingga sekarang .

setahun, one year, yhden vuoden

setaun lalu, jam 7an pagi, gue sampe di negeri yg skarang jadi “rumah” gue ini .
setaun lalu, di sini udh bersalju.
setaun lalu, gue ga punya temen sama skali di sini (belom ketemu muka sama Rini, dan lepas dari keluarganya Antti).
setaun lalu, rumah gue ini masih kosong melompong, kecuali untuk kasur, meja makan, dan meja (beserta) laptop.
setaun lalu, makanan di rumah kita cuma makanan instan.
setaun lalu, gue bilang ke suami gue, untuk ngafalin jalan ke Sello (mall deket rumah) mungkin gue butuh waktu setaun (maklum, sering nyasar).
setaun lalu, kata2 bahasa Finlandia yg gue tau cuma: kiitos dan hei.

setaun udh berlalu.

sekarang gue udh merasa lebih seperti di rumah sndiri.
sekarang walopun udh dingin tapi belom bersalju.
sekarang gue punya banyak teman, baik org Indo, Finlandia, maupun dari negara2 lainnya.
sekarang rumah kita udh lebih lengkap isinya.
sekarang gue bisa masak apapun yg kita mau (asal nemu bahannya aja, hehe).
sekarang gue udh bisa bolak balik rumah-Helsinki/Vantaa sndirian (dan tentu saja ke Sello sndirian, haha…tnyata cuma butuh semingguan buat gue ngafalin jalan ke sono!).
sekarang gue bisa ngerti 75% apa yg org2 omongin, di kelas, teve, rumah mertua, maupun di jalanan.

sekarang gue udh setaun di sini .
selamat setaunan di Finland, Puni!