May 11, 2018
If you’ve done your dash with Helsinki’s hipster bars and cooler-than-thou clubs and you simply feel like hanging out somewhere with decent drinks and unpretentious ambience, Sling In might be just the ticket. Named for the infamous Singapore Sling (a tropical blend of gin, cherry brandy, orange juice, pineapple juice and lime juice conceived at Singapore’s Raffles Hotel in 1915) this city bar offers an enormous list of similarly exotic liquid libations (around 900, to be more precise), and the bartenders get into the mood with a healthy dose of fairing as they whip up your drinks for you. Lactose intolerant? It might sound like a weird question, but the Finnish have an unusually high incidence of lactose intolerance, and Sling In also does a roaring trade in lacto-free drinks. Having opened back in 1999 when mixed drinks were something of a novelty in Helsinki, Sling In really deserves a pat on the back for helping to foster the city’s emerging cocktail drinking culture. With its ho-hum décor and rock’n’roll soundtrack, it might be too casual to be considered a cocktail bar in the traditional sense, and a slew of newer, cooler nightspots have long since robbed it of its ‘best bar’ crown, but after all this time, the owners have stuck to their philosophy of mixing really great drinks for an appreciative crowd, and that’s what regulars keep coming back for. Not far from Kaisaniemi Park, this super-central spot is a great place to meet friends before heading out on the town.