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What is the story behind Valkoinen Puu?

The story of Valkoinen Puu cafés began when we met each other through an international dating site and fell in love. We got married on our third date, and our friends thought we were crazy! But almost twenty years later, we are still happily together.

When we moved to Finland from the US in 2007, we set out to fulfil our dreams of living in the countryside and starting a lifestyle business. We wanted to open a coffee house that has an international atmosphere and delicious cakes. The idea behind our business is to create experiences that involve all senses. Mood, interior design, baked goods, food and coffee – of course accompanied by great service and smiles all around.

We have a passion for baking and cooking with real ingredients. For example, our spelt is grown only 10 km from our bakery. We also use berries from a local farmer and have created our Valkoinen Puu private label jams and juices together with them.

We opened two cafés during the pandemic. The first one was supposed to open in spring 2020, but it was postponed to June because of Covid. Last fall, we came across an opportunity in Jyväskylä we didn’t want to miss, so we took a leap of faith and opened a new café there. The last year has been exceptional with all the restrictions, but through hard work, innovations and development we have survived and thrived. For example, we are going to bring our famous lasagne to grocery shops in Finland.

Quick facts


– Owned by Finnish-American couple Kirsi and Mark Heidt

– They live in Kauhajoki, located on the west coast of Finland with their four children

– The first Valkoinen Puu café opened in 2011 in Kauhajoki. Now there are four: in Seinäjoki, Kauhajoki, Jyväskylä and Tampere, two of which were opened during the Corona pandemic.


Valkoinen Puu,

Kalevankatu 11-13, 60100 Seinäjoki

What is the secret to your success?

Attention to detail is our biggest asset. We offer desserts that are unique in Finland: cakes are the bedrock of our business. Some recipes come from the diner that Mark’s grandfather had in the 1950s, other recipes are from Kirsi’s family and our bakery is innovating new cakes all the time. Using organic spelt and real berries deepen the flavours of our desserts and food.

The Secret Garden Chocolate Cake is our most talked-about product. Our customers constantly tell us that they love our cafés so much because everything we serve is so full of flavour. We’ve set the bar high!

We are lucky to have a skilled team of dedicated and passionate people around us. Success is a team effort, and our business requires diverse know-how.

Why should people travel to Finland? What can Seinäjoki and the Finnish Coast & Archipelago region offer for travellers?

Finland is a special country. First there’s the clean, green nature, thousands of lakes and fresh air, then the unique combination of long summer days and dark wintertime. When travelling to Finland, we really recommend renting a car and driving on smaller side roads. You can truly experience the countryside, beautiful coast and peacefulness of our country.

The beautiful Coast & Archipelago region goes all the way from Helsinki and Turku to Oulu. Seinäjoki is a growing countryside city known for its many festivals throughout the summer. Seinäjoki is also definitely worth a visit for Alvar Aalto’s architecture. He’s one of Finland’s most famous architects, and you can see many of his buildings in the city centre of Seinäjoki.

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