WELCOME TO HELSINKI by Nicolas Thieulon
”Food and wine, oh, they are my passion, I love them. I see and do everything with feeling. I delight in the fact that my work has an effect on how people spend their time in Helsinki, by eating out, for example.
The sea is everywhere in Helsinki. I am a water person, whenever possible I’m in the water. Every summer morning I swim in Kaivopuisto, it really gives me the kicks.
In the summer I often take my scooter from the centre to Lauttasaari. In five minutes I’m on a tiny, remote spit of land and dive in for a swim. Afterwards I sit there on my own and have cigarette. It is so luxurious and crazy, only in Helsinki.
I like the Helsinki feeling, something’s constantly going on. My favourite park is Sinebrychoff. I sit on the grass and simply enjoy. Sometimes my wife and I bring a bottle of wine and books. That’s the Koffari [Sinebrychoff] spirit.
People enjoy themselves and have fun in Helsinki. So many good cafés and restaurants have popped up and Helsinkians boldly do what they like for a living. Nothing happens if that isn’t the case, and you don’t have to follow the norms, that’s been seen.
This is my mission. It’s great playing a part in making Helsinki even more fun. Welcome to Helsinki!”
Nicolas ‘Niki’ Thieulon is a sommelier and a restaurateur who has delighted Helsinki with several restaurants. Snow was the only thing that he was familiar with when he left France for Finland at the age of ten. Niki was photographed in BasBas, his and Kalle Kiukainen’s latest restaurant.