Café Ekberg represents Finland’s best in traditional patisserie and coffee. It was established in 1852 and has been producing staple sweets ever since. Located in Helsinki. It has become the epicentre of the city’s residents craving fresh patisserie. The handmade rolls and confections are the selling point for the café as the same recipes have been prepared for centuries.
Helsinki’s best historical café
Helsinki is lucky to have its very own best historical café and is known as the Grand Dame of the Helsinki café scene. Founded by F.E. Ekberg and his long line of descendants, the bakery has stayed in the family and is a cultural staple. Like most historical cafés , it has gone through major efforts to preserve its original look.
The many mirror panels surrounding the bar and the wood cabinetry give it that old Helsinki look. They pride themselves on customer service and high-quality handmade sweets.
The primarily Nordic cakes showcase the classics including the Danish, and the Budapestbakelse. That particular cake has been popular in Sweden since 192 and is likely a derivative from the Austrian-Hungarian Esterhazy cake.
It is made of hazelnuts, whipped cream and fruit. Café Ekberg serves it in a very sophisticated form, with tons of fruit in every bite. The menu also incorporates various Western hits like traditional carrot cake, pain au chocolat and other French treats.
Above all, we recommend the carrot cake, even if not traditionally Swedish. Its appetising texture has real pumpkin incorporated to add flavour.
Finland is a massive coffee consumer
Helsinki coffee stems from the massive Finnish consumption of coffee. Finland is one of the largest coffee consumers in the world as each Finn is said to go through 12 kilos of coffee a year.
Finnish coffee culture really took hold in the 1950s when it was treated as a social factor. During those post-war years, coffee became a symbol of hospitality. Finnish people have an expression, “kohteliaisuuskahvi”, meaning “politeness coffee”. Part of the greeting protocol during the winter is to serve a freshly brewed cup of coffee similarily to the way the English treat tea.
Finally, it was also an issue quantity more so than quality. A good dose of caffeine helped ease the gloomy winter seasons. Today, the coffee scene has changed and many specialty brews have emerged.