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“Tasteful and light lunch” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hoku

Hoku
Merimiehenkatu 18, Helsinki, Finland
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Ranked #15 of 1,009 Restaurants in Helsinki
Cuisines: Japanese, Hawaiian
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Espoo, Southern Finland, Finland
Top Contributor
91 reviews 91 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
“Tasteful and light lunch”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2014

For quick and light tasteful lunch at Helsinki, Hoku is highly recommended. Place is small, so lucky to get a table during the lunch hours. Selected Salmon Teriyaki, which was brought to the table within ten minutes from order. Very tasteful and excellent crips structure, lovely spices.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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59 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    43
    12
    3
    0
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
London
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Rather ordinary Japanese”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2014

This is a unprepossessing neighbourhood restaurant that we would have loved to adore, given the fabulous reviews. But we found it merely adequate. The edamame were fine, with a bit of chile, but not outstanding. The pork belly was tender and flavoursome, with added cabbage that hardly seemed like kimchee. The gyoza my husband ordered could have been had at any number of Asian restaurants, and his salmon also merely average. It is good value for money, however--nothing wrong with the place, just not up to the hype. Or did we simply come on an off-night?

  • Visited August 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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Cham, Switzerland
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
“For those who want more than the usual sushi ...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2014

Hoku is an excellent small Japanese restaurant in the design district of Helsinki. The restaurant menu is refreshing and unusual (e.g., beef neck and pork belly were on offer when we visited) with great flavor. For those looking for the normal and boring sushi experience, pleasure will be found elsewhere in Helsinki - it has plenty of sushi restaurants! The wine list although restricted was adequate - we had an good Austria white, which went well with the flavors of the starters and main courses. Service was efficient and pleasant. A Yamazaki 12-year old finished off a memorable experience.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Helsinki, Finland
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Very good food with affordable price”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2014 via mobile

We were four people eating there. Luckily we had made the table reservation earlier because there was a lot of people coming in and otherwise the place would have been full.

We ate salmon teriyaki, chicken katsu and seafood&lup cheong stuffed kuha. Food was excellent and there was plenty of it.

I recommend this place if you want to eat good food but you have to make a table reservation in advance

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southern Finland, Finland
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“Amazing flavours”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2014

Hoku was recommended by a friend and did not disappoint.

I had booked a table a few days in advance for an early dinner with a friend and received prompt confirmation of it. On arriving to the restaurant it is in fact very small, but wasn't too crowded on Wednesday afternoon so that wasn't an issue.

We ordered Emame to start with and it was amazing. It's hard to imagine a dish this simple being so excellent but we really loved it. The little hit of chili was amazing.

My main course was the braised beef neck with ginger pesto and it was divine. The beef was very tender, the ginger pesto being the perfect accompliment to it. Especially impressive as it was a big dish and hearty one without being too sturdy.

My friend had the famed teriyaki salmon which she thoroughly enjoyed. I tried it but preferred my own dish, whereas she preferred hers so it's a matter of taste. Both were delicious.

Service was great and attentive. The wine was good and they had a good, small selection.

It rates well in Helsinki for serving quality food, having a unique and somewhat trendy niche and not having a waiting list of several weeks. I will most definitely dine at Hoku again and am happy to have discovered it.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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