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A taste of the Mediterranean in Helsinki

July 22, 2005
I am generally not a picky eater and my other half and I often head out to eat in Helsinki. Actually we have travelled a few times in the past few years and always take the time to sample local cuisine (and beer!) where ever we go.
Our most recent trips outside of Finland were to Funchal, Madeira (Portugal) and to Budapest, Hungary. The food in Madeira was expensive (comparable to prices here in Finland), but where ever we ate it was excellent. Hungary is famed for its food and we took advantage of the restaurants that we came across, generally eating full-course dinners. The restaurants in Budapest are much cheaper than in Finland, so if you ever travel there eat your heart out!
But back to Helsinki… Yesterday we went to eat in a little restaurant called Casaro ( at Lapinlahdenkatu 9 in Kamppi in the heart of Helsinki. My hubby found it when he did a search for restaurants in the Kamppi area on the Restaurant guide known in Finnish as the Ravintola opas ( It seats about 30 people – max. And since it opened back in March of this year it has steadily increased in popularity due to word of mouth.
Casaro serves up a menu of dishes from around the Mediterranean and the Middle East. I tried meze, a platter of "tastes from around the Mediterranean" served with warm flatbread. The owner told me that I had to try everything individually because it would garner its own taste, then try everything in combination and then try everything with bread… And he was right, the different tastes were an assault on the mouth, but a good one!… I also had Poro pasta, only because I love eating reindeer when it’s on the menu. (Another great thing about being here… sorry to all the vegetarians out there!) We drank wine with our food, which was the best choice because beer would not have done this menu any justice. Simply put, the food was fantastic!
I can only say that if you are on a diet, Casaro is not the place to go – or go there with an empty stomach because you will have to roll yourself out of there after you pay the bill! We certainly rolled ourselves out of the door after a hearty dinner and a hefty thank you, hand shake and hug from the owner.
If you are looking for a different dining experience, I highly recommend Casaro.
2 Comments leave one →
  1. Unknown permalink
    July 22, 2005 12:52 pm

    a hug from the owner? you’re destroying my well-founded and ancient ideas about finns…..

  2. Sheara permalink
    August 24, 2005 11:29 am

    I live in Madeira it is great for holidays though in my opinion not a good place to live! The food can be expensive but it also depends where you go certain spots are considered more touristic therefore more expensive!

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