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Best food and drinks in Turku, Vaasa and Oulu
5 minute read
a fine dining fish dish on a white plate

Credits:: Linus Lindholm

These western coastal cities are hotspots for artisanal food and drinks

Some of the most culinary-focused cities in Finland are located on the western coast. Turku, for instance, is known as the food capital of Finland. This city, along with nearby Vaasa and Oulu, combines its strong seafaring culture with fresh, local ingredients, offering visitors a destination that’s chock-full of cosy restaurants and breweries serving unique flavours.

Person enjoying fine dining in a restaurant
Credits: Reetta Vahanen

Turku

Kaskis

This fine-dining restaurant serves what looks and tastes best at the time – all of its ingredients are local and seasonal. In fact, chefs Erik and Simo are frequently seen in Turku’s nearby forests collecting ingredients that later find their way to Kaskis’ plates. Show up early to ensure you get a table!
 

Café Art

Situated on the riverbank, Café Art serves homemade pastries and freshly roasted coffees from Turku’s very own coffee roaster, Turun Kahvipaahtimo. The coffee here is so good that Café Art’s baristas have been named Baristas of the Year seven times.
 

Smör

Salmon from Åland, goat milk from Laitila, cranberries from Kemiönsaari. As ambassadors of local food and masters of Nordic cuisine, the chefs at Smör draw inspiration from the seasons and fresh local produce. The menu is updated approximately every eight weeks, so stop by often if you can.
 

Kuori

Vegetarian restaurant Kuori takes a creative approach to plant-based food by respecting their ingredients and striving to minimize their ecological impact. Whenever possible, Kuori’s ingredients are organic and come from local producers, and the restaurant’s menu changes seasonally.
 

Oobu

Oobu serves fresh dishes from the archipelago inside a gorgeous 19th century building in Turku. Fish, lamb and vegetables are showcased in various forms, both honouring local traditions and making use of new kitchen know-how.
 

Don’t miss: breweries inside a former school, prison and pharmacy

Finland’s largest brewery restaurant, Koulu, operates in a former school building, while Uusi Apteekki brewery is located in Kaskenmäki, in a former chemist’s shop. Visitors can also check out the most recent addition to Turku’s beer scene, Kakola Brewing Company, located on the premises of an old prison on Kakolanmäki Hill.

A table full of a la carte dishes
Credits: : Visit Turku
People enjoying a sunny day in a brewery's sun terrace in Turku, Finland
Credits:: Kakola Brewing Company / Aleks Talve

Vaasa

Hejm

Hejm offers great views of the sea throughout the year, and from rooftop terraces during the summer. The food and beverages are largely focused around Ostrobothnian ingredients from local fishers and farmers.
 

Café Raawka

Café Raawka in the heart of the city offers colourful, modern vegetarian and vegan food such as salad bowls, raw cakes and smoothies. Be prepared for new, unconventional flavour combinations with the power to “raawka” your world.
 

Gustav Wasa

At Gustav Wasa, Chef Kim Hellman prefers to work with local producers. The menu can be changed on a short notice as it’s based on the best the season has to offer, and the restaurant hosts a tasty Saturday brunch.
 

Sweet Vaasa

Sweet Vaasa bakes cakes from scratch, creating unique delicacies that look and taste amazing. Plus, all of the more than 100 cakes are made with natural ingredients, so there are no food additives or preservatives, and the bakery uses locally produced ingredients whenever possible.
 

1h + k

At 1h + k, the staff creates new food and drink menus four times a year, giving customers a fresh, exciting experience each time they visit. What’s more, the restaurant’s three-course menu is designed with the best seasonal ingredients and local products in mind, and can be complemented by sommelier-selected wines and side dishes.
 

Don’t miss: Bock’s Corner Brewery

Bock’s Corner Brewery is a small independent brewery located inside a refurbished ice cellar. Connected to the brewery is Bock’s Pub, where you can enjoy a tasty meal and watch the brewmaster at work.

Two chefs preparing food
Credits: : Linus Lindholm
The interior of a restaurant
Credits:: Linus Lindholm

Oulu

Puistola

Located in a lovely pink jugend-style building, restaurant and bakery Puistola caters to the hungry all day, from breakfast to à la carte, and from wine tasting to late-night Neapolitan-style pizzas. Craft and quality are the core values of this family-owned restaurant.
 

Ostroferia

Ostroferia lives and breathes the seasons of the Oulu region with a menu that’s based on local flavours and produce. Some of the dishes are only served for one night – before a new batch of ingredients arrives.


Tuba Food & Lounge

Tuba is a laidback restaurant that’s known for its tasty pizzas. Furnished with second-hand furniture, this eco-friendly-minded eatery uses many organic and locally produced ingredients – and even some that have been rescued from going to waste. Plus, there’s always a vegetarian or vegan dish on the menu.


Hailuodon Panimo & Restaurant Mallassauna

Hailuodon Panimo is Finland’s first organic brewery, which produces German-style beer from the clean water of Hailuoto island. The brewery operates in an old storehouse building and has a pub that offers limited hours, but they’ll soon be opening a new restaurant called Mallassauna in the city’s Pikisaari district.
 

Mallaskellari

Mallaskellari specializes in domestic craft brewery products and serves draft beers from more than 20 taps. The beer selection is constantly changing, and if you’re lucky, you might just get to taste a beer made by Mallaskellari’s brewmaster, Bence.

Person holding a carry case of handcrafted beers
Credits: Mariia Kauppi