September 11, 2012 / 1:10 PM / 5 years ago

Finnish restaurant a limestone mine "pop down"

Customers eat their dinner at Muru Pop Down restaurant at Tytyri mine in Lohja, September 10, 2012. REUTERS/Antti Aimo-Koivisto/Lehtikuva

LOHJA, Finland (Reuters) - Finns this week opened the ultimate underground restaurant with a four-course menu including escargot flambéed in Pernod.

Popular Helsinki restaurant Muru set up a temporary eatery some 80 meters below ground in a limestone mine in the southern Finnish town of Lohja.

Inspired by “pop-up” shops and restaurants, an urban trend of enterprising cooks and retailers setting up temporary shops in unusual spots, Muru calls its 10 night-only experiment a “pop down” restaurant.

“The main theme with the menu was Element Earth,” said chef Timo Linnanmaki.

In addition to the escargot served with fennel risotto, the 128-euro ($160) menu features smoked vendace in lemon oil, roasted veal tenderloin and hanger steak simmered in herb stock.

The mine is also the location for a laboratory of the elevator firm Kone, and diners are invited to don helmets and protection jackets for a tour down a 350-metre elevator shaft into the mine.

Tables have already sold out for the event, part of a series of programs related to Helsinki’s designation as this year’s World Design Capital.

($1 = 0.7821 euros)

Reporting by Attila Cser, writing by Jussi Rosendahl

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