In the past few years Helsinki has developed a funky and diverse food scene – gone are the days of boring old sausages and mustard. One of these exciting developments is the transformation of the Hietalahti Market Hall. It’s a great place for a quick lunch or dinner but Saturdays are when it’s really happening!
The Hietalahti Market Hall has had many new merchants opening their businesses in 2015. Inside Helsinki’s second oldest market hall you will find shops selling cheese, bread and other specialities. In addition you will find many hip restaurants – so many that you will have a hard time choosing where to have your meal.
But fear not. Your wish of being able to taste more than one restaurant’s fare on the same visit has come true! On Saturdays We Love Helsinki and the market hall vendors arrange a fantastic event called ‘Musaa & Maistelua’ which translates to ‘Music & Tasting’.
By coincidence – on the very same week when we dropped by with our friends – City of Helsinki had decided not to sell the market hall which enables such happenings being held in the future too. Hooray!
It may look quiet on the outside but inside you will find a very lively and ambient scene. All the vendors have specially prepared small tasting portions (with affordable prices) for the evening and a DJ plays groovy music in the background. The hall is filled with happy sounds of people enjoying themselves. This is what Helsinki has been missing.
First off, we headed to Fat Ramen as I was intrigued by the steam bun on their event menu. And oh boy – it was a great choice. The pork belly was just right – crispy on the outside but still tender. The bun was nice and airy and the fillings complimented all this perfectly.
Fat Ramen also served a mean sake sangria.
Next – Street Gastro. They are known for their tasty sandwiches.
Here we opted to take two sides – the truffle-pumpkin and the the kale-caesar salad. The kale really gives the caesar a new twist. Both excellent.
And last, we went for Kimchi Wagon’s gochujang & sesame hot pot stew with rice noodles.
What I like about Kimchi Wagon are the extra toppings you can choose for yourself.
All this was just a fraction of what was on offer. The champagne tasting would’ve been interesting. Or maybe a mini burger or a meze plate? A new visit is definitely in store.
It’s good to know that as the event starts at 5 pm it’s also family friendly. The menus differ each Saturday. There were queues but very minimal ones.
You still have one Saturday to catch this get-together before Christmas. As far as I know this or similar events will continue again in 2016 – great news for us foodies!