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TravelReview: Pier Zero Restaurant at Helsinki Airport

Review: Pier Zero Restaurant at Helsinki Airport


We visited Pier Zero restaurant at Helsinki Airport twice this autumn. The Scandinavian Pier Zero is an architecturally impressive sight and offers tasty food with friendly service. The view of the runway is almost unobstructed. It’s not quite a perfect restaurant, though we can honestly recommend it. Read our review to find out what’s good about the restaurant and what could be improved.

Pier Zero

Pier Zero is a combination of a deli, bar and à la carte restaurant in the Schengen area of Helsinki Airport. As the restaurant is after security control, only those travelling are allowed to enter. Pier Zero is one of the many places to eat at Helsinki Airport, but one of the few with a good view of the runway.

We visited Pier Zero in October and again in December. In this article, we share some basic information about the restaurant, our experiences and a review.

Location

Pier Zero is located at Gate 28 in the Schengen area. The restaurant is on two floors: a deli and bar downstairs and the à la carte restaurant itself upstairs. Pier Zero’s main shortcoming is the lack of a lift. If you have a mobility disability, getting upstairs is difficult if not impossible.

Pier Zero is located in the old part of the terminal, identified by its iconic parquet floor. Near the restaurant is the Aspire Lounge, which also overlooks the apron.

PRO TIP

You can also buy access to Aspire Lounge by Gate 27 on Lounge Pass.
Helsinki-Vantaa
The à la carte restaurant is located upstairs next to the tarmac window. From the other side of the restaurant, you can see the inside premises of the terminal.

Access

Pier Zero is a restaurant open to all. However, it is worth noting that the restaurant offers Nordic American Express Platinum members and one companion a free breakfast or a meal from the menu later in the day. Beverages are also included in the offer.

We have twice taken advantage of the American Express card at Pier Zero restaurant.

Our Visit to Pier Zero

We were travelling from Helsinki to Belgrade via Frankfurt in late October. We decided to try Pier Zero for the first time because American Express had been actively promoting the Pier Zero benefit. Finding the restaurant after security was easy, as it was just a few steps away at Gate 28 and the restaurant was easy to identify by its shape.

We visited Pier Zero also in December.

Arrival

We climbed the stairs to the Pier Zero à la carte side, as there was only a bar and deli downstairs. We noticed as soon as we arrived that there was no lift upstairs, so not all potential customers might be able to take advantage of the restaurant’s services. At the top of the stairs, we were greeted by a small but very comfortable and particularly quiet restaurant area. The view of the runway was almost unobstructed, making Pier Zero an aircraft enthusiast’s dream.

Stairs to Pier Zero
These stairs led to à ala carte restaurant.
Overview of the restaurants
The restaurant of Pier Zero was small but comfortable. Dim lighting made the view outside better.

Food

We ordered a pulled beef burger from Pier Zero’s American Express special menu and a beer and mineral water. To our knowledge, the menu was not much different from the basic menu, but some dishes had been cut out. The drinks and food were brought to the table quickly and it wasn’t long before we were eating. The taste and presentation of the food were impeccable and the drinks were what we had ordered.

Pulled beef burget
We ordered pulled beef burgers. The meals were delicious.

Meatballs
During our second visit, we opted for a more Scandinavian choice: meatballs with mashed potatoes.

Customer Service

Service at the restaurant was friendly and professional throughout our stay. A minor shortcoming was that the service was only in English, even though the restaurant was located at a Finnish airport. If you are fluent in English, this should not be allowed to detract from an otherwise good restaurant experience. We understand that there were also Finnish-speaking staff in the restaurant, who will probably serve on request.

Alcoholic drinks
In addition to soft drinks, Pier Zero served beer, wine and other alcoholic drinks.
Airplane taking off, a view from Pier Zero
We recommend visiting Pier Zero after the afternoon rush hours. The restaurant is more peaceful but you can spot many planes taking off.

Other Services

The restaurant had a flight information screen, so it was easy to keep track of your flight status. We recommend that you allow at least an hour for dining, with a half-hour margin on top of that. There’s no need to leave in a hurry. If your flight is delayed or you have some extra time after dinner, you can enjoy a drink at the bar downstairs.

Restaurant and flight information screen
There was a flight information screen close to the tables. It was easy to track the status of our flight.

Was Pier Zero a Good Choice?

We haven’t tried all the dishes at Pier Zero, but the ones we have ordered have been excellent for the price. The prices are reasonable and American Express Platinum customers can dine at the restaurant free of charge for now. With its peaceful surroundings, friendly service and a great view of the platform, we think it’s an excellent choice for lunch or dinner travellers.

Table
The restaurant had many tables for two which is a sign that couples crowd this restaurant often.

Menu
The menu was planned in a way that everyone could easily find a favourite meal.

Rating