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Hel Yes - Pop up Finnish Restaurant(London)

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Last night we went here: http://www.helyes.fi/ with a friend. We had managed to get a table by emailing despite the website saying they were booked up. I think there are quite a few cancellations. None of us had ever had Finnish food before.

Anyway, we had a drink at the bar. I had a very sippable vodka that had some annoying thyme sprigs in it with a chaser of slightly salted beet juice. A cocktail that requires 2 hands is a bit conceptual for me, but it was very fresh tasting. My husband had a Finnish beer and declared it a disco beer, perfectly OK but over priced. And our dining companion had a vodka drink that was supposed to have rosemary in it, but really just tasted like lemonade.

Two of us had the Fish Tartare with Archipelago Bread and radish for a starter. It was very fresh and had a nice contrast between the crunch of slivered radish, dense tiny croutons and soft fish. My husband's beet with sour creme with dill was simple. The elf sized portions left us very hungry for our mains. The room was very warm and stuffy, so the the potato and anchovy gratin with cucumber salad would have been more satisfying had the room been cooler. I will try to replicate it at home, though. I had a bite of the lamb neck with dill and potatoes and was very impressed. The lamb was very tender and full of dill.

The desserts were very interesting. We shared the following: liquorice custard, pear sorbet with cinnamon vodka, and whipped raspberry manna with vanilla milk. The custard was sublime, very clean and light. The anise flavor really sang. The manna (I had to google to find out it was semolina) had a weird gummy texture and an odd frozen raspberry aftertaste. This was our least favorite. The sorbet with vodka was simple and will be easy to replicate at home.

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  1. Going tonight, thanks for the review.