Eating at Olde Hansa in Tallinn, Estonia was one of the highlights of our trip in the country. We love that Tallinn focuses on its medieval heritage.
The restaurant Olde Hansa embraces the city’s medieval heritage completely – what with waiters and waitresses dressed as medieval peasants and jesters, the candlelit rooms, curtains, furniture, ceramic drinking vessels – among others – that ooze middle ages.
The restaurant even tried to make the toilet look like a finely-draped garderobe with wooden seat. Take note: toilets in the middle ages are called “garderobe”.
We were puzzled by the lavatory – a basin together with what seemed to be a bottomless water pitcher (water kept pouring into the basin). Thank goodness we didn’t have to wipe our sensitive parts with leaves or rags.
Regarding food – we ate wheat. That, my dear, was what the governing class ate in the medieval period.
Meat in the old middle ages, was expensive and prestigious. It wasn’t very common to own chickens, pigs and cows, so meat was for the rich.
We ordered game – meat acquired from hunting. Games were meant for the rich only. We ordered duck, rabbit and deer. I was in fact tempted to order a bear, but nobody wanted to share that with me. And besides – how do we know that they are real games? For such an expensive bear dish that isn’t a real bear, it can feel foolish. And besides – are people really allowed to hunt and eat bear in this part of the world?
I chose a safe game – a rabbit.
“So how does it taste?” my cousin asked me.
“Chicken.” I answered. They laughed. I always answer chicken to meat I don’t eat much. Even frog legs taste like chicken to me.
Tuwa was so confused why we called the restaurant “mid-evil.” What makes it mid-evil, mamma?” she asked.