Scan Magazine | Issue 73 | February 2015

Page 69

2_6_ScanMag_72_Feb_2014_Text_Q9_Scan Magazine 1 04/02/2015 10:58 Page 69

Scan Magazine | Restaurant of the Month | Finland

Café Regatta has been selected as the best café in Helsinki.

Restaurant of the Month, Finland

One of a kind in Helsinki: Café Regatta When walking through Sibelius Park to the western shore of Helsinki, you’ll find a little red cabin with plenty of people sitting outside, most of them holding large cups of steaming coffee and freshly baked cinnamon rolls in their hands. After gazing through all the city’s urban sights you might be amazed to find this most beautiful Finnish countryside scenery in the middle of Helsinki, but this is what Café Regatta is all about – making a true positive impact on its visitors. By Tuomo Paananen | Photos: Alberto Garcia

Café Regatta strikes travellers as well as Finnish natives as positively different from all the other cafés in Helsinki. A relatively small wooden building with indoor capacity for only thirty people, but it provides two hundred outdoor seats during the summer as well as winter. “It’s countryside in the middle of Helsinki, so not a very typical Finnish café,” says the owner Raine Korpela who has been running the place for twelve years. Regatta is mostly famous for its fresh coffee and cinnamon rolls that are baked in the cosy cabin. “Our policy is to offer fair cups of coffee at an affordable price of two euros. However, we don’t give you a

discount on your second cup – we will actually give you five cents to have it! In addition to our home-baked cinnamon rolls, we also serve handmade sandwiches, blueberry pie, croissants and similar,” Korpela says. To an outsider the place might look like a flea market, as Korpela has decorated Regatta with a tongue-in-cheek attitude. “That’s what makes the place fun and atmospheric. We have a fish trap full of empty vodka bottles hanging from the ceiling, a pair of skis with boots still strapped on, local photographs and a bunch of other stuff you don’t see anywhere else,” Korpela laughs.

Café Regatta arranges several outdoor activities around the building. During the summer customers can rent rowing boats or canoes. Regatta’s winter time speciality is a pole sled ride with a rocking chair on it. “We like to offer Finnish experiences with a little twist. We also happily teach our visitors the ordinary gimmicks, like how to grill sausages over a campfire. In winter, we provide people with reindeer hides or blankets so that they can gather and enjoy their fresh coffee around the fire in frosty weather as well,” Korpela says. “We have almost 1,000 daily visitors, but the spacious yard guarantees that it will not get crowded. I guess this is just one of the places you can’t experience through photos or videos, but you have to visit yourself.”

Visit Café Regatta at this address: Merikannontie 8, Töölö, Helsinki, Finland. More information on Facebook @Cafe Regatta.

Issue 73 | February 2015 | 69

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