Food, Lifestyle, My Work

Visit Helsinki: Saaristo

July 28, 2016



Just when I thought that I have experienced pretty much everything that Helsinki has to offer, I was proven SO wrong by visiting restaurant Saaristo! Visit Helsinki cycle of posts brings us to another gem on Helsinki’s gastronomy scene, Finnish traditional cuisine presented in a fine dining way. I’d say that restaurant Saaristo is situated on a wonderful location to take your significant other for a romantic trip/ dinner or organise a celebration, such as your own wedding perhaps.

You need to take a very short, but lovely boat ride to the restaurant ( the ride is a minute long one and the ticket price is included in your bill at the end of your lunch/ dinner ). Upon arriving to the small island Klippan where the restaurant is situated, you have a nice walking path through a small forest, up to the top of the rock where the grandiose restaurant awaits for you. It’s a very spacious and bright place with the most spectacular views on Helsinki’s sea port and surrounding small islands. I must be honest and say that the view took my breath away and during the whole dinner, I couldn’t stop “staring” outside the window… The surrounding was surreal.


Saaristo is very popular at this time of the year, because : 1.) it’s Summer and it’s a must visit place during a sunny day, 2.) it’s the crayfish season and there’s no better place to enjoy your crayfish party than there. ๐Ÿ™‚



We have decided to check out their a-la-carte menu and present you with as many dishes as possible to give you an insight into when old, traditional Finnish cuisine meets the new, modern way of thinking and art of plating. As for the starters we had to test Breeze from Scandinavia plate, a selection of all of the Saaristo’s best flavours as well as their marinated gravlax.



Breeze from Scandinavia plate was a very generous portion of the best of the starters and I would recommend you to share this plate with one or two more persons. Add to this a lovely basket of homemade bread and you really don’t need any other starter. The plate consists of: raw salmon with dill aioli, Klippan island cheese, lamb sausage, elk pate, skagen shrimp salad, green salad, baltic herring with with sea buckthorn and herring with marinated onion. As for the marinated gravlax, it’s aquavit marinated salmon with potato salad, dill mousse, dill chips made of rice, capers and rye bread.


Oh my! I can’t tell you how amazed we were with this overwhelming selection of seriously the best of flavours not just of Saaristo restaurant but also in general in any of the similar restaurants we’ve been to in Helsinki! Everything was so fresh, filled with flavour, the A class fish and meat… Wow! Absolutely mind-blowing starter experience.

As for the main courses, we have decided to test out one vegetarian dish and one “meaty” one. As the “greetings from the kitchen” we got a fish dish portion of artic char.


Let’s start with the vegetarian dish – Jerusalem artichokes pan fried in the seaweed butter, served with porcini muffin and hollandaise sauce with nettle and radishes. Wonderfully presented dish didn’t disappoint in any way. For my personal preferences, the taste of artichokes had bit of a ” burnt ย taste ” and I wasn’t a big fan of that, but muffin was so moist and the taste was outstanding. It worked perfectly with the sauce. I would say that this is one of the more interesting vegetarian dishes you can find in Helsinki, def. worth giving it a try.



Meat dish was smoked cour de filet with wild mushrooms, thyme butter sauce, homemade gnocchi and roasted carrots. Meat, as you can see from the photos, the meat was so tender, perfectly done medium rare, it was a real, mouthwatering score for the meat lover. Crunchy, roasted carrots and buttery, soft gnocchi were perfect companions to this wonderfully done filet.


The fish portion – artic char got a little “tweak” because usually they offer rainbow trout, but we’ve been told that they had hard times getting enough of fresh rainbow trout to the restaurant and since they are offering only the best, prime ingredients, they made this dish with an artic char instead. I LOVE salmon and something that I love even more than salmon is artic char. It came with grilled fennel, marinated cucumber, cauliflower and Blanc Beure emulsion. Wow! I was swept off my feat! I thought so many times that I already ate the best possible salmon/ fish dish in Finland and I got proven wrong almost each time I came to another restaurant and got to taste yet another amazing fish dish. If you’re visiting Finland, you simply MUST try salmon dish or anything related to salmon, because people here have the best AND most delicious salmon/ fish ever! YUM!




I seriously have no idea how did we managed to test three different desserts, but even though we couldn’t finish them we got a pretty great idea of what they have to offer and they were all equally amazing, but our favourite was Skyr mousse with meringue, pepper marinated berries and strawberry sorbet! Wonderful dessert, worth all of the praise and def. worth trying it at least one more time. Other two desserts were sea buckthorn, carrot cake crumble and cream and the final one – chef’s favourite 64% chocolate brownie cake with yoghurt ice cream.


It was a “bitter-sweet” moment to leave this beautiful restaurant and island because of one of the best experiences I had in Finland ever since I have arrived here 9 years ago. Thank you wonderful staff at Saaristo for making me feel like I’m living a dream. Working has never been more sweeter! ๐Ÿ™‚

Now, go, book yourself a prime seat at this gorgeous restaurant, you will be warmly surprised!

*This post was made in collaboration with Saaristo restaurant. All of the opinions are my own.

*Thank you Miss Johanna for making this collaboration possible and being a wonderful person to collaborate with.

*Photography by: Natali K. photography


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  • Reply Jo July 28, 2016 at 10:12 AM

    Oh, how romantic. Arriving anywhere by boat is romantic.
    Like the little boat ride down the Granta from Cambridge to
    Granchester. Arriving for afternoon tea and cakes at The Orchard. Yes. A real old orchard where you can sit under the apple blossom and imagine Rupert Brooke exclaiming his latest poems.
    Of course, the food on offer is not as yummy as where you have been. But then, this is England.
    Thank you, Natali, for a beautiful post.

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:28 AM

      How romantic does this sound?! Beautiful! I can’t wait to go back to London again, it’s a wonderful city, but I’d also love to explore more of UK, I know that it has so much to offer. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Lola July 28, 2016 at 10:35 AM

    NEW BLOG ! please follow me : YOUNG BLOG

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:25 AM

      Thank you Lola!

  • Reply Neha July 28, 2016 at 10:41 AM

    Wow..its a beautiful place and food luk delicious too…thx for sharing hun..

    xoxo, Neha

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:24 AM

      Thank you Neha for stopping by and check out my blog. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Jo July 28, 2016 at 11:36 AM

    ….. And having just finished reading, ‘Sapiens'(A Brief History of Humankind), I am now into your book recommendation of the month, ‘Girl On The Train’ and enjoying every page. And yes. The train journey into London is just like that.
    May I recommend, ‘The Enchanted April’ by Elizabeth Von Arnim. First published in 1922 and in print still. It’s an easy going and gentle little book. I loved it, but don’t know what others think.

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:24 AM

      Thank you for the book recommendation, I’ll def. check it out even though there are only a few that old books which are interesting or comprehendible to me. I’m glad to read that you do like “Girl on the train” it’s really an amazing read.

  • Reply Ally Gradley July 28, 2016 at 4:36 PM

    Gorgeous details!
    Love all the snaps ๐Ÿ™‚

    xo Ally

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:23 AM

      Thanks Ally!

  • Reply Margaret July 28, 2016 at 4:47 PM

    So yumm!!! The presentation tho! As if I was along with you enjoying the time!

    xx Margaret

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:22 AM

      Wow! Thank you Margaret, this is such a big compliment to me. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Shannon July 28, 2016 at 6:38 PM

    Yum! Everything looks so amazing and those views are stunning!

    <3 Shannon
    Upbeat Soles

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:22 AM

      Thank you dear Shannon! Everything was just perfect. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Fabrizia July 28, 2016 at 6:59 PM

    Would love to visit it!
    Fabrizia – Cosa Mi Metto???

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:21 AM

      Def. worth paying the visit to this place. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Matea July 28, 2016 at 7:10 PM

    Jako ลกarmantno mjesto i divno izgleda hrana! Uลพivaj draga moja! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:21 AM

      Hvala ti puno! Saljem ti puno pusa!

  • Reply alice July 28, 2016 at 8:41 PM

    Oh wow, so cool!

    Alice Cerea

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:20 AM

      Thanks Alice!

  • Reply Toks July 29, 2016 at 12:15 AM

    This looks soooo wonderful. xoxoxo

    • Reply natali karppinen July 29, 2016 at 5:20 AM

      Thank you dear! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Adaleta Avdic July 29, 2016 at 7:35 AM

    One of my blogger friends was just in Helsinki, and I would absolutely love to visit. Although I’d love to visit just about every place in the world ๐Ÿ˜‰ xx Adaleta Avdic

  • Reply Katie Burroughs July 29, 2016 at 11:32 AM

    This place looks so insanely beautiful! I completely love all your gorgeous images ^_^

  • Reply iLo July 29, 2016 at 11:43 AM

    Great post ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply Candace July 29, 2016 at 2:31 PM

    Such deliciously looking food. I’m inhaling through the screen!

  • Reply Floortje July 29, 2016 at 3:25 PM

    Looks like the perfect destination this summer!



  • Reply Amy Arnold July 29, 2016 at 3:57 PM

    How fun to take a boat there! And the food is all so beautifully presented.

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

  • Reply Adi July 29, 2016 at 9:01 PM

    All that food looks so good!

    Adi xx

  • Reply Ivana July 29, 2016 at 9:27 PM

    Your pics are lovely and the food !!! So want to be ther now and eat haha.. Great post !! โค๏ธ

  • Reply Kelsey Bang July 29, 2016 at 10:45 PM

    oh my! all that food looks so delicious! how fun and tasty!

  • Reply Lillie Calles July 30, 2016 at 8:27 AM

    Wow, these look so delicious!

  • Reply Liz Nguyen July 30, 2016 at 8:35 AM

    Your photos are so great!!


  • Reply Viktoriya July 30, 2016 at 11:40 AM

    This place is seems so warm and nice! I would like to stay there)

  • Reply miri July 30, 2016 at 12:46 PM

    I must say that the pics of food look so tempting. If I lived closed to Saaristo, I would go there for dinner like yesterday!!!:-)

  • Reply The Fashion Folks July 30, 2016 at 3:11 PM

    The desserts looks so so so yummy, what a lovely place! Xx

  • Reply Marta Pozzan July 30, 2016 at 7:22 PM

    OMG so fun xx

  • Reply Elements of Ellis July 30, 2016 at 7:36 PM

    Wow! That restaurant looks gorgeous! How cool that you take a boat ride to get there!

  • Reply PutAllOnMe July 31, 2016 at 10:39 AM

    Such a beautiful place & food looks amazing ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Mademoiselle Coconath August 1, 2016 at 4:58 AM

    The food looks so good! Great post!
    Mademoiselle Coconath

  • Reply diana August 1, 2016 at 7:06 AM

    everything looks so yummy

  • Reply diana August 1, 2016 at 7:24 AM

    i never been there but would love to go

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