Blogs from Pirkanmaa, Finland, Europe - page 4


Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere March 9th 2009

An uneventful start to the week and an uneventful drive home from work too. No moose sighting yet :( No reindeer, no rabbits, no squirrels... Nada. Although, we did see the squirrel at work and Dave mentioned he saw a rabbit one day too. Now, don't get me wrong... The views are amazing here! Just seeminly devoid of wildlife. The views are especially gorgeous when we take the back roads, which we do most days. An interesting tidbit: I believe reindeer is what they're called when domesticated. Wild they are caribou. I never knew that. Do you think they taste different? ... read more

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere March 8th 2009

After a lazy morning I met a friend, Carol, for lunch at Ravintola Näsinneula. It's a rotating restaurant at the top of a tower overlooking Tampere. I've been told by a similarly culinarily-inclined friend that there exists an inverse relationship between restaurant height and food quality. This didn't quite hold true at Näsinneula as the food was exquisite; however, the portions were exquisitely small. Granted, I eat a lot, but I left quite hungry despite my five course meal. Of note on the table: A very delicate morel soup, very light with cream and chives; served in a demitasse. A seared filet (small) of arctic char on a potato and garlic puree with three pieces of potato about the size of dice; the flavor was incredible. My main was a tasty piece of roast beef on ... read more
Tour de Force
Amazing View
Mocha Waffle

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere March 5th 2009

It's pretty sad. The snow is melting. Talk about a heat wave, it was a whopping +2 deg C today. I think I'd prefer it if the cold comes back. I'm sure it will. Nothing special to report today. Pea soup n' pancakes at lunch and some good conversation with a coworker. Discussed the education system here in Finland. They definitely have us beat, free or not. There just seems to be more incentive to get an education here. For example, the shop guys I work with here all have 3 years of schooling. Even chefs at restaurants go through 3 years of school. My observation is that it makes them take their jobs more seriously. It just seems to me that everyone is more professional at all levels of the job family. I packed up ... read more

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere March 4th 2009

Nothing special to report today. Work was work and I stayed in last night, eating at the hotel. Bubbles talked me into staying as they have changed their menu. So I figured I'd try some of the new stuff. I started with a very lightly grilled scallop dish, served with lobster, greens and a balsamic reduction. It was delectable; the scallops were done perfectly. For my main I had pork tenderloins wrapped in parma ham. These were served with baked vegetables in a spicy garlic sauce and french fries. I enjoyed it, although I'd have prefered my veggies less cooked. I can't say they were overcooked, just more than is to my taste. The sauce had the spice of raw garlic. It was very good, but different from what I was expecting. I paired a Chilean ... read more

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere March 3rd 2009

I came in number one among the Moore children today by giving Mom her first birthday wishes. Yes it may have still been Monday in the Quad Cities, but it was her birthday in Finland! Anyway, Happy Birthday Mom. Miss ya! One thing I forgot to mention yesterday was my work lunch. I had Russian Cabbage Rolls that were very good. Filled with some sort of meat and potato mixture and served with rice. Maybe you're figuring this out on your own, but Finnish cuisine is just a tid bit starchy. Moving on... Today at lunch was Georgian Cabbage Casserole. I didn't try it, I went with a pasta dish, but I did wonder about it. Not that it was possibly yesterdays leftovers in a new form. I was thinking more about how Russia and Georgia ... read more
Pinot Noir?

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere March 2nd 2009

Dave survived the weekend, kind of. I saw him and his wife at breakfast this morning. They informed me that Dave took a spill during the weekend in Helsinki and has either a severely sprained or broken ankle. He still made it to the Prius though, just with a heavy limp. One of our Finnish coworkers, Taisto, brought us in some Mämmi today. It's a traditional Finnish dessert mostly eaten around Easter, but you can find it all year. It's made from water, dark molasses, rye flour, rye malt, barley malt, salt and sour orange peel. You serve it cold with cream. Let me tell you, it tastes much better than it looks; Dave was less of a fan. An interesting fact from Wikipedia: Originally mämmi was eaten during lent; its laxative properties were associated with ... read more
Looks Yummy, Right?
Huvää Ruokahalua! (Bon Appetit!)
My first taste of Mämmi.

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere March 1st 2009

After last night's adventure I decided to sleep in for a while. I finally rolled out of bed sometime after noon. Knowing that a greasy lunch would be the best cure for my hangover I headed to a Hesburger that's just a block from my hotel. Hesburger is the largest Finnish hamburger chain, even outpacing McDonald's in the Finnish market. I'd never tried it so I figured why not. After some difficulty in ordering because the young girl behind the counter was confused by my English I ended up walking home with a bacon-cheeseburger, some fries and a coke. I must have had a rough night last night because, as I walked back in the hotel, the girl at the desk, apparently the same girl as when I came home last night, asked how I was ... read more
Food Tent
Sled Dogs
Highway on the Ice

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere February 28th 2009

After such a lazy Friday night I got up and wandered down to the lobby for breakfast. I just grabbed an apple, an orange and a carafe of coffee to take to my room. With coffee in hand I ended up making the morning very productive, catching up on emails, blogs, bills, etc. I finished up the chores and snuck out to Celtic House for a late lunch. They have a good club sandwich, but not so good a selection of English reading material. My buddy Jussi wasn't working when I got there, but showed up soon. He caught me reading the only English magazine they had which was something similar to Cosmo in America. After defending myself by stating it's the only English stuff they had he went out and bought me some new English ... read more

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere February 27th 2009

I have word that there was a moose accident on our drive home, but we didn't see a thing. So apparently someone else saw a moose and then proceded to stricke it down forcefully with their van. I believe that all humans survived unharmed, but I'm not sure what happened to the van or the moose. I'm glad to hear everyone is safe, but a bit disappointed Dave and I still haven't had a moose sighting. A wildlife park may be required in the near future. A simple day at work, a moose-missing drive home and an even more boring Friday night. Dave had to get up early Saturday to pickup his wife at the airport in Helsinki and I guess I was just tired. We met at Sevilla for dinner, partly because it's close and ... read more

Europe » Finland » Pirkanmaa » Tampere February 26th 2009

The only excitement today was Dave spotting a squirrel running up a tree on the way to eat our pea soup and pancakes at lunch today. This is our first legitimate wildlife sighting we've had, save for the pigeons back in Tampere. It was a dark brown squirrel with rather large and pointy ears. And it was sure hurrying to get up that tree; Finnish squirrel so maybe it has a sauna up there. You never know. After a wee bit of Googling, Dave has determined it was a Eurasian Red Squirrel. Sorry, we didn't get a picture, look it up. After work we did chow again at the Opera Bar and Brasserie, Holiday Inn. Same routine: Snails because they're amazing, grilled goat cheese salad because I'm addicted and for main course I mixed it up... ... read more

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