Welcome to the Wine Village
The Wine Village at Messukeskus Helsinki, Expo and Convention Center attracted hundreds of people curious about Italian and Argentinian wines and, of course, Champagne on October 28, 2021. Photograph: Tony Öhberg/Finland Today
HELSINKI—On Thursday evening the Wine Village next to the Book Fair is busy. Busy with patrons keen to indulge into the latest wine trends but also with people thrilled to watch a couple of Finnish celebrities make a salad at a show kitchen.
Kari Aihinen and Jaakko Saariluoma (Kape & Jaska) are happy to pose while ladies in their 60s are snapping shots and selfies with their mobiles.
Jaakko is an actor and a stand-up comedian whose questions about making food sparked an idea of making a cookbook with his friend Kari, who is a famous chef. The first edition sold out quickly. (They were happy to sign some of the last copies at the book fair.)
Stand-up comedian Jaakko Saariluoma (back) and chef Kari Aihinen impressed the elderly audience with their culinary skills. Photograph: Tony Öhberg/Finland Today
Before the coronavirus pandemic, Messukeskus Helsinki, Expo and Convention Center was a vital meeting ground for companies and consumers. Then, a year and a half ago, the pandemic forced their doors shut.
Now, the Helsinki Book Fair, the Wine Village and the Record Fair combined form the largest public event at the fair center since 2020.
In the wake of a high vaccination rate, hundreds of people of all ages were swarming between the vendors at the large hallways. Some wore masks. Others didn’t.
With the masks off, you could actually see people smiling.
The Helsinki Book Fair, the Wine Village and the Record Fair are ongoing between October 28 and 31 at Messukeskus Helsinki, Expo and Convention Center.