Karelian Kitchen

Karelia à la Carte combines the best aspects of traditional cuisine with more modern tastes, laying stress on individuality in preparation and taking the fullest possible advantage of seasonal ingredients.

Variety, abundance, nuance – three key words in the Karelian kitchen, typically based on local products such as fish and game, forest mushrooms and berries. Favourites include a bewildering variety of pies and pasties with names such as sultsina, tsupukka, pyörö, piirakka, kukkonen and vatruska.

Throughout Karelia you’ll spot restaurants and country inns bearing the ‘Karelia à la Carte’ sign, a guarantee of genuine Karelian cuisine, a unique combination of the western kitchen with influences from the Russian kitchen and Orthodox traditions.

Parppeinpirtti, standing on a hill near Ilomantsi, is a good place to sample genuine Karelian fare. The typical buffet includes a large selection of pies, fish, salads, mushrooms, casseroles, vegetables, stews. Desserts are usually based on local berries such as lingonberry, strawberry, bilberry and cloudberry. And don’t forget to try the local berry wines and liqueurs.

The Bomba House restaurant at the Holiday Club Bomba near Nurmes serves traditional buffet meals daily, as well as offering a tasty à la carte menu.