Good News from Thu, 16 August, 2012:

World’s first ‘pop-down’ restaurant to open in Tytyri Mine

Henriikka Ahtiainen Muru restaurant’s Timo Linnamäki is one of the people behind the new ‘pop-down’ restaurant. Muru restaurant’s Timo Linnamäki is one of the people behind the new ‘pop-down’ restaurant.

The world’s first ‘pop-down’ restaurant will open in Lohja in September. The Tytyri mine will open to diners from 10 to 29 September 2012. Muru, named Finland’s Restaurant of the Year 2012, will be in charge of the kitchen.

Muru Pops Down in Tytyri will be situated 80 metres below ground level, in the mine’s Tytyri room. During the evening, guests will have the opportunity to ride KONE’s test laboratory lifts to a depth of as much as 350 metres.

The menu for the pop-down restaurant will be
inspired by the unique m
ining  environment, and diners can expect the food to be delicious and down
to earth, so to speak. Muru’s Timo Linnamäki has no doubt that the miners themselves have always appreciated hearty local cuisine.

The restaurant was initially scheduled to be open to the public for ten evenings, but because of the overwhelming interest in it, three more days were recently added. The dinner package comes at a price tag of EUR 128 and includes bus transportation from Helsinki to Tytyri and back, food and drinks as well as entry to the mining museum.

Minna Ermala, tourism secretary for the Town of Lohja, hopes that Muru Pops Down in Tytyri will be the start of more regular restaurant operations in the mine.

 — This could be a venue for all kinds of temporary restaurants, says Ermala. 

Until now the space has only been used as a reservation-only restaurant.

The Tytyri mine is still in active use as a limestone mine by Nordkalk Corporation. The tunnels of the mine crisscross at a depth of 400 metres underneath Lake Lohja and the town. The network of passages exceeds 60 kilometres. Limestone has been mined at Tytyri for nearly a century.

There are other underground restaurants in the world, but Muru Pops Down in Tytyri claims is the first "pop-down" one we know of.