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MICHELIN Stars unveiled in Helsinki

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The MICHELIN Guide Nordic Countries 2024 awarded two new stars to Finnish restaurants, elevating Helsinki’s culinary prestige and highlighting sustainable gastronomy with a Green Star award.

Finnish restaurants were awarded two new stars at the MICHELIN Guide Nordic Countries Ceremony 2024, held in Helsinki. This brings the total amount of Finnish star restaurants to nine, out of which six are in the capital. Additionally, one restaurant in Helsinki was recognised with a Green Star and two with the Bib Gourmand award. In line with the City of Helsinki’s catering policy, the MICHELIN Guide Nordic Countries served, for the first time in its history, no red meat at the prize ceremony.

On Monday night, top chefs from all over the Nordic region gathered in Helsinki to participate in the MICHELIN Guide Nordic Countries Ceremony, where this year’s prestigious MICHELIN Stars were awarded.

The event saw the announcement of not just the renowned MICHELIN Stars, but also the MICHELIN Green Stars, which recognise pioneers in the field of sustainable gastronomy. A range of Special Awards celebrating outstanding industry professionals was also presented.

Finnish restaurants were awarded two new stars. In Helsinki, The ROOM by Kozeen Shiwan, which the guide describes as “unique and theatrical”, gained its first star only five months after opening. At the restaurant, the chef and owner Kozeen Shiwan tells his life story through a creative menu. Elsewhere in Finland, Tapio in Ruka, which brings high-level dining to the popular ski resort, with an emphasis on natural flavours and exceptional ingredients, also got its first star.

Restaurant Nokka was awarded the Green Star, bringing Helsinki’s total score to four – an important recognition for the sustainable profile of the city’s restaurant scene. According to the guide, the team at Nokka is “doing a great job of explaining the origins of the local, seasonal produce.”

A total of 85 star restaurants are included in The MICHELIN Guide Nordic Countries 2024. In addition to them, 36 restaurants have the MICHELIN Green Star. Finland now has a total of nine star restaurants, out of which six are located in Helsinki. Restaurant Palace has two stars, while Finnjävel Salonki, Demo, Grön, Olo and The ROOM by Kozeen Shiwan have one each.

Two new Helsinki restaurants – 305 and plein – also received the Bib Gourmand award, highlighting restaurants offering great quality, great value cooking. Restaurant 305 was lauded for its “rustic, unfussy cooking”, and according to the guide, “the experienced chef’s skill shines through in the cleverly composed dishes that incorporate some international elements ranging from dashi to ravioli.” Regarding restaurant plein, the guide was impressed by its generous and homely feel, combined with skilled cooking.

A historic ceremony displaying the best of Finnish food and sustainability

The event, first of its kind in Helsinki, brought a host of international guests to the Finnish capital, including more than 120 chefs from the Nordic countries as well as more than 60 domestic and international journalists and influencers. The ceremony took place in the historic Savoy Theatre, followed by a cocktail dinner highlighting Finnish and Nordic food at Helsinki City Hall.

For the host city, the ceremony and dinner are a fantastic occasion to present the local gastronomy and food culture to a wider, influential audience. The guests were treated to a 12-course menu displaying the best of Finnish food and produce, largely sourced in the Helsinki region. In line with the City of Helsinki’s catering policy, no meat was served – a first in the MICHELIN Guide ceremonies’ history.

The menu included, among other dishes, pan fried scallops and pea salad with brown butter and wild herbs freshly picked from Helsinki’s Ullanlinna district, pike perch from Vuosaari with black kale, Rossini caviar beurre de blanc and puikula potato purée, as well as choux filled with oxalis lime curd, poached rhubarb and sour crème parfait.

Guests were also able to see local Helsinkian chefs in action thanks to an open show kitchen built especially for the event at the City Hall. The MICHELIN Guide normally asks chefs from different countries in the region to participate, but this year, the show kitchen team was entirely composed of chefs from the Helsinki area. Eero Vottonen, head chef at renowned Helsinki establishment Palace Restaurant, was one of them.

For us, it is a great pleasure and honour to be part of this year’s Nordic Michelin event and show everyone the best of our unique and beautiful city. It is a huge opportunity for Helsinki and our fantastic restaurants and industry people”, Vottonen said.

The ceremony was organized by the MICHELIN Guide Nordic Countries and hosted by the city in cooperation and Visit Finland as well as the Finnish food and drink industry firms of Fazer, The Helsinki Distilling Company, Kespro and Valio Aimo.

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