Yesterday was an exciting day. Fazer held a press conference at the newly remodeled Munkkivuori Fazer Cafe in Helsinki. This was in some ways my baby as well, since I was part of the team that worked to develop the new concept. We had been looking for new sophisticated flavors and trends while keeping in mind the unique history and tradition of Karl Fazer. Many of the classics are still on the menu. And if I may say so myself, I think we have succeeded.
Fazer is one of the leading, if not the leading business in the bakery, chocolate and sweets production in Finland. It is certainly a household name here. Fazer was founded by Karl Fazer who opened a café in 1891 in Helsinki on Kluuvikatu. I may be a bit biased, but I really think the interior designer on our team was very successful bringing together influences of art deco with the light colors, textures and shapes that are characteristic of Nordic design.
One of the new menu items are the drinks made with red espresso. Red espresso is rooibus tea that is made using the tradional espresso method. I had the red cafe latte. Red espresso is completely caffeine free. When sprinkled with cinnamon and sweetened with honey it has nuances that remind one of chai tea. Here is a link to a youtube video about red espresso.
One strong current trend is local slow food with a global influence. And maybe one of the most important trends is experiencing a pause in the hectic pace of life. I think the V60 pour over coffee has an eliment of just that. It cannot be done too fast since the beans are ground fresh on the spot and as the water warms and is poured over, there is an opportunity to exchange a few thoughts with the barista. Being a barista is as much a social job as it is producing espresso drinks. That is also one of the goals of the new concept, offering personalized at-table service to customers. Maybe this will show the way for other enterprises as well. Customer service in Finland is rather reserved, often letting the customer to serve themselves.
Inspiration was drawn from the café culture of central Europe, from the flavors of the Middle-east and from the bakery tradition of the United States.
Two cafés have been opened with this concept, one in Tampere and one in Munkkivuori, Helsinki. There are plans for two more openings before the end of the year and in the future this concept will be brought to Sweden and Russia. Best of luck to the concept!
Congratulations on being part of the team that designed this. It looks wonderful, the food is just gorgeous and I am intrigued by the latte’s made with tea. I love that idea. Brava!!! Very well done. if I ever get the chance to visit Finland I will definitely go to Fazer, you should open one in NYC!
Thanks you Suzanne! I was very intrigued with the red espresso as well and I was quite pleased with it. Love it that there are other options available for tea drinkers or for those who are sensitive to caffeine!
So cool you were part of this! Awesome! Really love going to Fazer when in Helsinki. We have a relative in the US who is Finnish by descent and said she’d love to be a representative if Fazer ever wanted to expand into the US market, she loves Fazer so much! 😀
🙂 Thank you for the suggestion…the future is full of opportunity! It was a great project and I enjoyed it!
Sitting on the porch enjoying some Fazer chocolate and coffee while reading your blog. Kudos! The things I could looked wonderful. Wish I could have been there with you, we share your excitment.Thank you Joonas for the chocolate.
Wish you could been here too Grampa! Sitting on the porch and enjoying chocolate sounds quite relaxing ❤ Laila
Congratulations, Laila. The place looks good and the food, especially the pastries, look very tasty. 🙂 Cheers to you and the team.
Thank you Imelda! I had the salmon sandwich with a poached ego the morning of and it was quite tasty with the red espresso latte…perfect for an early lunch 🙂
Congratulations. This looks so wonderful. I am a fan of rooibus tea so I would really like to try it as a red espresso.
Thank you! Hope you have a chance to try out the red espresso sometime!
Every time I go out, I will be looking for it.
Everything looks so wonderful and appetizing. Congratulations to you and the rest of the team! You continue to amaze me with all that you can accomplish, especially right now. Good for you!
Thank you John! It was a wonderful project to work on! Very gratifying.
Wow – Congratulations! Everything is just perfect.
Thank you Mandy!
It must have been gratifying to see the successful end to your project. The cafe looks like a nice place to visit and enjoy some delicious goodies.
It definitely always feels great to get something completed. It gives an opportunity to reflect back and then set your sights on new projects and challenges.
Thanks! By the way I tried your blackberry tart recipe (with raspberry and blueberry) and it turned out wonderful! I may write a post on it since I tried out a gluten-free version as well with much success. Thank you for a lovely recipe!
Happy baking! We had the blackberry one this afternoon1
nice luxury 🙂
what a wonderful project to be a part of! I love the look of every part of it and would happily spend a lazy few hours nursing a red espresso (or two).
The red espresso is definitely a new favorite for me! Hope it gains popularity and becomes more readily available 🙂
Wow! Beautiful design, very contemporary. And fantastic looking food! How amazing that you were a part of its conception!! You must be so proud!!
Thank you Lidia, and to be honest I did feel quite pleased!
What a beautiful space. Those baked goods, especially the one with the tomato, made me drool a bit. So delicious looking. And I didn’t know about red espresso, thanks for the introduction!
Thank you for your kind comment!
I absolutely love your pictures! You have a great camera!
Thanks, it’s a Canon 450D.
Thanks. I’m in the process of trying to figure out what kind I want to buy. Good to know.
Congratulations! It looks beautiful, all of it! And those photos are divine.
Thank you so much!
This place looks fantastic, you did a great job! Love that Red Expresso too 🙂