”Back in 2006 I remember thinking: the time has come for a purely Nordic restaurant to be opened in Finland.” recalls Pekka Terävä.
As himself together with Petri Lukkarinen, Heikki Tavela and Timo Sailamaa started to plan the opening of a Nordic restaurant on Kasarmikatu, there were a lot of potential names to choose from. Among them were Kasarmikatu 44, the address, as well as Elo, which is Finnish for life. But Olo stood out as the most brilliant name. It is a Finnish word symbolizing good feeling and also a part of the word ’olohuone’, living room. All of us are able to find our own meaning of it and it is easy for everyone to use, no matter what your mother tongue.
Olo was first opened on Kasarmikatu in 2006. In 2013 the restaurant moved into the Lampa house next to the Market Square and this historical building still serves as a home for Olo on this very day.
Olo turned 10 years old on the 6th of September 2016. The restaurant has grown fast in the past 10 years and got many significant recognition. The restaurant got its first Michelin star in 2011 and has kept it since. Since then Olo was chosen Finland’s best restaurant several times – this year, Olo was named Finland’s best restaurant by the White Guide once again. The staff has also got many awards. Restaurateur and creative leader Jari Vesivalo was chosen chef of the chefs (fin. kokkien kokki) , a highly honored award among kitchen professionals. It’s the finest award a Finnish chef can get’, says Vesivalo.
Restaurateurs Katja Henttunen, Jari Vesivalo, Petri Lukkarinen and Pekka Terävä are looking back at the last 10 years with warm thoughts and are excited to see what the next 10 will bring.