For a cheerful, authentic Soviet shopping experience pop across the road from the famous Kaubamaja department store into this bustling, smoky café that has not changed much since 1964, when it was first opened by three Estonian sisters (who still run the place).
Old ladies in fur coats rub shoulders with shop workers smoking roll-ups and office types from the businesses that crowd this part of the city – making Energia one of the best places to watch real Tallinn at work. It’s often full to the brim, so you may have to wait for a table while you take in the chintzy wooden décor and the Estonian radio station on the overhead.
This is a cosy place to try out some fattening local cakes, pastries and blinis (with fish, roe and ham). One of the prettiest entrances of any café, since you enter Energia through a tiny florist’s. The same people also own the smaller, more modern café next door.