Punavuori, meaning red mountain, is one of the districts in the Finnish
. The district was named for its distinctive red cliffs, nowadays mostly obscured by buildings. Punavuori is Helsinki’s design district, filled with trendy shops, restaurants
and bars, and is especially popular with younger people and artists. See where you can find some of the best restaurants in the area with our guide below.
Best known for its sapas, a sort of Finnish version of tapas, Juuri is a popular place for locals and tourists alike. Taking inspiration from Finnish buffet tables and Northern Mediterranean culinary traditions, Juuri was opened in 2004 to great acclaim. The menu revolves around traditional Finnish cuisine, with rich flavors and local ingredients. The sapas menu includes 13 dishes, such as smoked trout with roe and carrot, roasted lamb and beans and goat cheese with pea and red currant. As sapas are meant to be shared, you can order an assortment and enjoy a tasteful culinary experience as a group.
Ravintola Juuri, Högbergsgatan 27, Helsingfors, Finland, +358 9 635732
This classic, family owned restaurant celebrated it’s 90th anniversary in August 2014 and is still going strong. Kosmos is known for its local, Helsinki cuisine, based on a mixture of Russian, Swedish and French specialities and Finnish cooking traditions. The restaurant is recognizable from the steel art designs in front, and the decor in the elegant dining room dates back to 1930s. Try one of the classics, such as Baltic herrings with potatoes or Vorschmack with duchess potatoes. The restaurant additionally offers current recommendations and a three course tasting menu.
Ravintola Kosmos Oy, Kalevankatu 3, Helsinki, Finland, +358 9 647255
Muru is a star in Helsinki’s design district. A previous winner of Restaurant of the Year awarded by the Finnish Gastronomical Society, the menu is based on French cuisine with an unusual Italian twist. Muru’s house specialities include charcuterie, bouillabaisse and risotto, while the other dishes on the menu are constantly changing. The restaurant has an extensive wine selection, serving the best European wines and champagnes to perfectly accompany the food.
Muru Ravintola, Fredrikinkatu 41, Helsinki, Finland, +358 10 2928999
Salve is more than a century old harbor restaurant. Opened in 1897 as a food kiosk for sailors, nowadays Salve’s interior is still maritime themed. Dark wood design, tables with blue tablecloths and walls decorated with pictures and sailor motives are reminiscent of ship saloons. Here you can try the best Baltic herring in the country or enjoy a delicious stir-fry. The menu primarily includes old Finnish seafood specialities, but you can also opt for meat and vegetables dishes.
Salve, Hietalahdenranta 11, Helsinki, Finland, +358 10 7664280
This elegant restaurant was established in 1933 and preserves the decor and menu from 1950s. The simple interior, with wooden furniture, white walls and beautiful paintings, create a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Locally known as sikala, or pigsty, the nickname playfully reflects the big portions restaurant serves. Try the recommended meatballs or perch à la Mannerheim with horseradish butter and mushroom sauce.
Sea Horse, Kapteeninkatu 11, Helsinki, Finland, +358 9 628169
A 21 Dining
A 21 Dining offers a delicious exploration of Finnish cuisine. Decide on one of the tasting menus (with three, five or seven courses available) and experience varying tastes of modern Nordic cuisine. Next to your food, you can select a wine or cocktail package, designed to blend perfectly with the dishes. The menu changes seasonally and revolves around four themes: Spring or land of the thousand lakes, Summer or trip to the Finnish archipelago, Autumn or walk in the forest and Winter or above the Arctic Circle.
K17 Helsinki Oy, Kalevankatu 17, Helsinki, Finland
Lasipalatsi, or The Glass Palace, is the dream-made-reality of three young students of architecture, completed in 1936. The restaurant occupies the second floor of the palace and was from the beginning the heart of the building. After renovations in 1990s, the restaurant reopened in 1998 with the original functional-style interior. Besides the main dining area, the restaurant offers three smaller meeting facilities. Lasipalatsi serves traditional Finnish cuisine with a modern, international twist, and is also known for its themed weeks.
Ravintola Lasipalatsi, Mannerheimvägen 22-24, Helsingfors, Finland, +358 20 7424290
Hietalahti Market Hall
Hietelahti Market Hall offers a unique dining experience, where you can mix and match food from different vendors. This is the second oldest market hall in the Finnish capital (opened in 1903) that traditionally sells food. Stop by the Soppakeittiö soup kitchen for a delicious tomato lentil soup; try the fish specialities or taste the best hamburgers in town. During summer weekends, the market hall also hosts Helsinki’s most famous flea market.
Hietalahden kauppahalli, Lönnrotinkatu 34, Helsinki, Finland, +358 9 31023580
A modern Asian-fusion restaurant, Gaijin combines traditional Japanese and Korean dishes with flavors originating from the north of China. The restaurant is divided into four parts: the main dining room, with a warm and comfy atmosphere, dimmed lights and dark wooden interior; the lounge area, where you are invited to enjoy fresh cocktails; and a private dining room and terrace. The food menu was designed to be shared and mixing different flavors is encouraged. There are two tasting menus available for a wholesome experience.
Gaijin, Bulevardi 8, Helsinki, Finland, +358 10 3229386
Saslik restaurant is one of the Helsinki’s landmarks, with its czarist Russian decor and exciting atmosphere. Opened in 1972, the interior reflects the bygone area of imperialist Europe. The design includes blush painted walls, paintings in golden frames, wooden padded chairs and white tablecloths. The waiters wear the old hotel liveries. Saslik is famous for Russian specialities, such as borsch soup, blini or baked Alaska. The restaurant also offers three different tasting menus, with three courses, and occasionally offers musical entertainment for between courses.
Saslik, Jungfrustigen 12, Helsingfors, Finland, +358 9 74255500