Perfect Sunday Brunch @ Olipa Kerran


If I remember correctly, it was July when we first planned to go to Olipa Kerran and booked a table for a Sunday morning. A friend sent me a link to a blog which wrote about the lovely brunch at the hotel which is located only 5 min walk from my home. The pictures looked irresistible. I immediately agreed with the brunch friends to go there. But that morning, I had a severe headache and couldn’t leave the bed. Sweets friends decided not to go there without me as they knew how much I had been looking forward to going there.

Some of us were away from the city during summer and we finally got there today! I had been excited about it for a couple of weeks since we booked a table (once again). 

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The interior decoration, especially colors, was super lovely. One of us said, “even on a cold and snowy day, if you came here, you would feel warm and happy.” And everyone agreed. There was atmosphere which makes us happy.

Of course, it wasn’t only decoration and atmosphere. Selection of food was one of the best I’ve ever had in Helsinki 🙂 Most importantly, they had lovely lovely LOVELY pancakes with maple syrup! (I admit that pancake was one of the most decisive reason why I so wanted to go there 😉  I am crazy for pancakes as much as I wonder if I would choose pancakes or sushi as my last supper 😉 and as much as I eat it everyday when I visit Honolulu, Hawaii or any other cities in the US 😉 Though there are salad, cheese and other salty dishes, I started my brunch with the lovely pancakes.


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I also loved berry smoothies in tiny glasses. It is very sensible to serve it in a small portion as we could try more variety of dishes when each portion is small 🙂  Bacon, cheese, salad, etc. etc. were also very good. All of us overate with overwhelming joy. (I don’t think I am exaggerating!)  It was a perfect Sunday brunch with great friends.

Olipa Kerran” means “once upon a time” in Finnish. Theme of the decoration is something old. There were some old items in the restaurant.


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Unexpectedly Cozy Cafe

“Tuesday is the most boring day of the week” was the common opinion between me who is at the moment working as freelance and a friend who is a freelancer. To make Tuesday less boring, we made a plan that I visit her at her home at Vuosaari.


Vuosaari is the east end of Helsinki metro line. For me, it’s quite a remote place though it’s part of Helsinki and many people live there. It’s a residential area with nothing so exciting… had been my understanding untill a friend took me to the lovely waterfront cafe, Kahvila Villa Ullas, in the Ullas park. It looked like a small cottage and I loved appearance of the cafe 🙂


What they had at the counter were pretty much typical Finnish pulla (and some pie and sandwiches), coffee and tea. Very genuine Finnish cafe, which aligned with my feeling of the day! Something special there was the pulla which I hadn’t seen before, Ullas pulla. A friend told me “Ullas” is the name of the cafe. It must be really special only available here. So, we chose it 🙂 We liked the Ullas pulla very much. Berry jam and sour cream topping on the quite ordinary pulla… It was yummy!!!


WP_20131015_007We spent about half an hour till they close the cafe. It felt absolutely peaceful there. Even though weather was gloomy and wind was cold, usually boring Tuesday turned to lovely Tuesday at the lovely cafe 🙂


Charming Cafe in Old Provoo

It was last Sunday when I visited Porvoo. I have to say it again, it was “SUNDAY”. Though I wanted to have sweets and coffee at my favorite Cafe Gabriole, they were closed on Sundays. And it was about 4 pm when we tried to have a coffee break after walking a few hours taking photos of beautiful “ruska” (colored leaves in Finnish) and started feeling tired and cold. Most cafes which were open on Sundays close at 4 pm there. My other favorite Porvoo Roastery which is well known for their freshly roasted coffee  was, of course, open for their generous opening hours, even on Sundays 10-23 o’clock. But I wanted to have good Finnish pulla.


It took some time for us to find the one but we were delighted to find “Helmi” was still open until 5 pm. It looked like a good old cafe and we were excited once we opened the door and saw the coffee room. It was lovely lovely cafe with antique (Russian, I think) decoration.  (Now I read about the cafe in their web page and it has been there since 1983). They didn’t have pulla but I didn’t mind anymore 😉 Cakes look super. They had only coffee and black tea but no herbal tea which I wanted to have. But it didn’t bother me that much. Cakes look lovely! It was easy for me to make a choice. Cheesecake was the most attractive 😉


So, I had lovely cheesecake with tea and enjoyed lovely atmosphere of the cafe 🙂 (I don’t think the cheesecake was one of the best I have ever eaten but the time we spent there was lovely and peaceful, indeed!)


In addition to Gabriole and Helmi, I am sure there are more and more lovely cafes in old Provoo though it is really small town. I’m looking forward to my next visit to Porovoo. I have no plan at the moment, but you never know. I hadn’t known that I would go to Porovoo until noon on the day when I joined a friend for it 🙂


Just in case you don’t know where Porvoo is… It is about 1 hour bus ride from Helsinki (for me).