It’s not a secret that Helsinki is becoming slowly but steadily, a coffee lover’s hotspot. For a country of coffee maniacs, Helsinki’s coffee scene was until a few years ago, as barren as the Atakaman Dessert. But the Finnish capital has finally moved on from the days that the only descent coffee place in town was Café Strindberg…and never looked back!
Last Saturday, I decided to challenge the cold wind and stroll all the way to Katajanokka, a mostly residential district, right at the southern edge of Helsinki harbor. Katajanokka is one of my favorite areas in downtown Helsinki, because of its diversified architecture ranging from classical to jugendstil and red brick gothic.
At the foot of the imposing Uspenski Cathedral hill, an array of red-brick houses follow the coastline. They were built in the 19th century and used to serve as warehouses. Today they have been transformed into offices, restaurants, shops and cafés. Among them, a relatively newcomer in Helsinki’s coffee scene: Johan&Nyström Concept Store. This is actually their first store outside Sweden and it is both café and shop.
At Johan&Nyström, they are proud of what is called “slow roast” method, that “ brings out the true taste of the coffee and gives the best cup possible”. Their coffee and tea is mostly Fair Trade and organic and you can find some very interesting varieties from different countries to take home with. Friendly service, warm atmosphere, happy clients. They also organize barista and tea courses. To top it all, Johan&Nyström was voted one of the best coffee places in Helsinki by Kalle Freese, the 2013 Finnish Barista Champion.
What is your favorite Café? Have you ever been to Helsinki? What did you like the most about it?