I always write these posts as if these ‘tours’ actually exist as something to do (UPDATE: Have changed the title to ‘guide’ to make it less confusing). Just to let you know, I make the tour and itinerary up myself, and the guide (myself) is also the person who enjoys them, along with Luke who I drag along with me.
Vegan food in Helsinki is actually pretty freaking great. There are so many vegan-only places, places with vegan options, and – oh my good god – the supermarkets. The supermarkets are full of vegan goodness, including Finnish Pulled Oats (which they use as a meat replacer – OATS!) and so many Oatly products that have yet to hit the UK (think Oatly ice cream, energy drinks, and SO many different flavour combinations I didn’t even know existed). I would have hauled back everything if I could, alas ice cream would have melted, but I did managed to sneak back some Finnish Oats (which I’m yet to try, they’re sat in my freezer waiting for the right moment).
ANYWAY! Back to the tour. It’s tough when you only have a few hours, because there’s only so much you can eat. We had a few blips (e.g. getting a taxi to a place that was closed), but we managed to do three burgers, which isn’t too bad if you ask me! I’ll include the place that was closed (I think it’s summer only) and the other places we would have visited if we had more time.
LET’S DO THISSSSS!
Friends & Brgrs
Our tour started off at the chain Friends & Brgrs, where they bake their own buns in house (AND YOU CAN SEE THEM DO IT IN A ROOM WITH GLASS WALLS SHOULD I BE THIS EXCITED).
Their vegan burger is in a freshly baked bun with their housemade vegan patty, caramelized onion, tomato, rucola, and vegan aioli. I was so hungry I scoffed it down. It was good and I happily ate it, the quality of the ingredients and all the toppings really made it. However I’ve had some pretty damn good vegan burgers in the world and I have to compare it fairly. The texture of the patty wasn’t fab, but it was a good burger overall.
Löyly is a MUST-VISIT spot when you go to Helsinki. Book a sauna session and make a reservation at the restaurant after. The building and view from it in itself is worth the visit. Holy moly.
Word on the street was the Löyly did a pretty mean vegan burger, made with FINNISH PULLED OATS. I was so excited to try it, that it had to make my tour. Unfortunately, when it arrived, there were no Finnish pulled oats to be seen, so I assume it’s a seasonal thing? I was disappointed, but ate the burger anyway.
My disappointment faded quickly, because even though they didn’t use Nordic oats, they used Jerusalem artichokes. It wasn’t a patty, or a meat substitute, but oh my was it delicious. I also loved the crispy bun. It was a different burger, and I appreciated that – I’d also have it again.
Rating: 7/10 for using those J Arties
Bar Loosister serves up burgers, pizzas and other yums, and has a reaaaaally good amount of vegan options on the menu, as well as specials. I didn’t know what to go for, but settled on the Big Sister Burger – Seitan patty, vegan cheddar, remoulade-mayonnaise, ketchup, fried onions, lettuce and fries.
I can usually be a bit funny with seitan, and half the time my stomach doesn’t really agree with it. However, I took the risk and ohhh did it pay off! The seitan was cut in squares instead of shaped in a traditional burger patty, but there was a double layer of them and it gave the burger a good bite.
The pretzel bun was soft and not dry which was a nice surprise (as they can be), and the toppings and mayo were all yum yum yum!
Other Places We Didn’t Go To
Bistro Badenbaden – this is where we tried to go to but it was closed. I did try and call up before we went to see if they were open, but there was a voicemail (obviously in Finnish, probably telling me that it was closed) that I didn’t understand. However, from everything I’ve read online, it might just be the BEST vegan burger in Helsinki. Go in the Summer (I assume that’s when they’re open) if you get the chance – the location right by Löyly looks SUPER cool, with heaps of other restaurants and bars by the water.
Social Food Street BurgerJoint – I read they do amazing burgers, and I saw a vegan burger on the menu, but couldn’t find any reviews on the vegan burger online. If you hit them up, let me know how it was!
Naughty Brgr – I’m actually GUTTED that I didn’t manage to go here. The website looks INSANE, and I see that they do a burger with PULLED OATS!!!! Oh how I wonder what you’re like, little burger.
O’Learys – I read online that these guys also do a fab burger, however I noticed they use Swedish Oumph, and I already buy that weekly and use it in burgers/sandwiches at home! So I’m sure it’s SUPER good and I’d definitely try it if I was there (or never had Oumph before), but it wasn’t the top of my list as I could make it myself.
If there’s anywhere else you’ve been that’s good, LET ME KNOW! And if you’ve been to one of these places I’ve mentioned, I want to hear your thoughts! Let’s all eat burgers and be happy.