When you think of Lapland themed restaurant at the hotel in Helsinki, first thought might be if it a cheesy tourist trap serving mediocre food or something else. First impression of Kultá was opposite, what comes to décor. Some lappish elements but not too many. A bit of feeling of a hotel restaurant, but hey, that’s what it is.
Right after walking in I got feeling that waiters might be understaffed as it took almost ten minutes for them to show us our table. Then another ten minutes to bring the menus and get order for some drinks. We did not waste anymore time there as we had decided beforehand that we would go with a five course tasting. This time it was a little bit different as they are having “Artic Ocean” menu for couple of weeks. Price for the menu is 74€ and wine pairing adds 65 euros.
After a bit of more waiting (almost an hour from walking in) menu started with two types of bread and browned butter, along with amuse-bouche of mushrooms and rainbow trout roe. That was promising start. Next dish with hand peeled shrimps and cucumber was quite good as well. After this was in my opinion the best dish of the menu, smoked willow grouse with beetroot cooked three different ways. Beetroot complemented perfectly very smoky bird breast.
After this came monkfish with mussels and roe. All in all tasty, but I think less components in this one would have resulted tastier and more elegant dish. Also the fish was not evenly salted. Second main was, as you might guess from the Lapland theme, reindeer fillet. On a side was really good, creamy parsnip puree. Dessert had cloudberry and ice cream and something else, but this brought to the table by different waitress, who did not tell what she served and left quickly before we could even ask.
Overall quite good experience, but I think menu was a bit pricey and they would need more staff to have smoother experience. Wine pairing was really good and service friendly and professional, except for the points mentioned earlier.