Wineweek 144: Places in Helsinki

The last two weeks have been spent in my childhood home of Helsinki. I come here every summer to spend time with my family, and to check out whats new in town. This time, I did not check out so much new, but rather revisited the old. I took long walks with my camera, and tried to capture some memories from childhood hangouts. One day I even had the pleasure of taking a photowalk with my mentor Tuulia. She has taken me from completely automatic to 100% manual photography within a matter of hours. I always learn something revolutionary about my camera when I am with her. For this week, I thought of combining a bit of tourist tips with my pictures – places in my childhood neighborhood of Töölö that I think are worth a visit. Continue reading “Wineweek 144: Places in Helsinki”

Sumerian coffee, popular expat cafe in Shanghai with decent coffee

Normally there is a Coffee Monday post but due to a bit summer slacking this ended up being a Coffee Tuesday post. Among the more popular coffee places in Shanghai, is also the usually packed Sumerian coffee. It does not look like much from the outside but the crowd makes one interested to see what it is all about. Somehow it is still usually possible to find a seat, especially along the counter at the windows. There a few coffees to select from as hand brews, either cold or hot as well as espresso based beverages. The coffees are roasted by themselves but it is fairly dark and not dosed properly. It comes out way too dark and the flavors are rather muddled and not very clear. The cappuccino was decent, clearly drinkable, but nothing special. The quality of the coffee sort of falls into the category of being better than a regular cafe but not at all good enough to be a specialist coffee place.

 The service was neither friendly nor unfriendly but rather stressed and not really interested in chatting, perhaps due to the number of people there. The tables are placed really close to each other so also very difficult to move around inside as the place is not really inviting to sit for a long time. Three is still free wifi so that is of course a plus. The ambiance is however still not inviting, somehow the feeling of the place was not friendly and all visits there have been loud expats there so not really the atmosphere I am looking for.

 The food seems to be a big draw here, a lot of wraps and sandwiches to select from as well as smoothies and salads. Not very local fare, rather more the type of stuff one would find in an average Western cafe. There are better options in the same area (I would hold Seesaw, Cafe del Volcan and Paloma Cafe higher) so will not frequent this place but if in the area I know thatthe coffee is drinkable.

So how does it rate:
Coffee quality: 2
Ambiance and service: 2
Food: 3.5
Vs local competition: 3.5