Monday 22 February 2016

Blog move

This Finn has been in Berlin too long now to find new things to marvel about. Berlin is now home rather than an exotic wonderland. Instead of my blog I have written an comprehensive online travel guide in Finnish for the travel site

You'll find all my Berlin tips and wisdom at

Sunday 25 August 2013

Bite Club

Another street food event in Berlin, following the popular Street Food Thursdays at Markthalle IX, is Bite Club. After two successful affairs in scorching summer weather, the next one is up on August 30, Hoppetosse/Arena in Treptow.

Sunday 28 October 2012

Treasure in a bento box

Through my job in the media world I tend to hear a lot of tips on where to go and what to do in Berlin. The ones that interest me the most are the food tips... and this last one was golden! We met our friends D and S at Gobento in Prenzlauer Berg, hoping for great Japanese inspired food –  the bar was set high. We didn't expect to also love the owner who welcomed us warmly, even if he was busy, and who passionately explained all the details of the dishes to us. There are no menus at Gobento, just the bento boxes (€10 each) filled with a variation of small dishes and condiments that depend on what the chef decided to make that day. Asking for a vegetarian or fish-free  bento box wasn't a problem and as we waited we enjoyed the complimentary jasmin and green tea. The food at Gobento is as beautiful as it is delicious and we almost didn't want to ruin the pieces of art by eating them. Mercifully we were given permission to tuck in and be messy! For dessert we were offered a selection of glutinous rice balls with a white chocolate dip – the peanut-butter treat was the unanimous winner. I'm dying to go again to see what new ideas have come to the chef's mind!

Again/Always London

We were in London to visit my best friend at the start of October. She and her new-ish boyfriend have just moved there, so now it feels like we have almost as many friends in London as we do back home in Finland. The trip was great even if it ended up draining all of our funds for, say, two months to come. We managed to find a cheap B&B type hotel (not easy in London!) near St Pancras train station where our Luton airport trains arrived and departed, and which is on the Northern Line, as is A and V. We spent two nights there, and one at the airport, since our stupid Easyjet flight was at 6am on Monday morning. The things we put our future selves through while planning trips! Our only plan, really, was to hang out and take it easy and to see our friends as much as we could. And go to pubs! I really miss the Irish pub life, which is pretty much the same in London. So we hung around Shoreditch and drank many pints of cider, Guinness and ale. The two remarkable things we hadn't done before in London were to go to the Tate Modern (free entry, why hadn't anyone told me!) and to go for midnight bagels at the famous Beigel Shop on Brick Lane. Oh, I'd go back to London just for one of those!

Steampunk bar

I'd never heard of steampunk before, so when a new theme bar opened and I made my friend L check it out with me, she had to explain the whole science fiction genre to me from Victorian aesthetic to Jules Verne adventure. Looking at the lovingly assembled Aetherloge 12° says a lot, too. The hand-built big, wooden bar, enforced with bolted steel plates, shelters the exotic rum and absinthe bottles and a set of decorative, brass pipes. What isn't hand-built is at least tweaked to perfectly suit the purpose, like the lamps; orbs that sit in simple iron holders, omitting a pleasing yellow light around the bar. As my friend was leaving Berlin for the winter, she made us promise that we were going to patron the customer-less bar and make sure it doesn't go out of business – but it seems like business has picked up and we now have to go on a week night to get a table. I guess it's apt that a steam punk bar allows smoking indoors to create a veil of mystery, but thankfully on weeknights the veil is thin.

Dresden + Nationalpark Sächsische Schweiz

We took a little road trip at the end of September / beginning of October and drove to visit our friends in Dresden. We took the long way home and drove towards the Czech border to the Nationalpark Sächsische Schweiz. The scenery between Dresden and the park was amazing when driving along the Elbe, and I wish we would have given ourselves more time for that part of the trip. The national park was small enough to be explored in a day, but we only spent a few hours there. I also wish we could have spent a night in the car free village of Rathen, just below the park, or one of the other adorable little villages around. Instead, after our mini-hike around the Bastei (the impressive mountain bridge in the national park), we drove to the village of Bad-Schandau for a riverside meal. Apart from the frustrating traffic jams and hold-ups on almost all the bigger roads, it was a great trip.

Sunday 9 September 2012

Bye, puppy

We had to say goodbye to our temporary dog back in August, but got to pet-sit him one more time on what was probably the last weekend of summer... I have a feeling that we won't be seeing much of him anymore. Maybe we'll have to visit a dog shelter and find someone to rescue there.
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