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#1 Sneakeater


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Posted 11 April 2018 - 08:52 PM

Vesper, Noordwijk -- This was the restaurant in a hotel we stayed in at this beach resort, on the first nice weekend this year in the Netherlands, as everybody (including us) rushed out to the sea and the flowers.  I had no expectations for the food, and was pleasantly shocked by how good it was.  The standard Dutch hotel breakfast, from the cold buffet to the eggs/pancakes/waffles, was excellent (significantly better than at our [very nice] hotel in Amsterdam).   Dinner was really good:  they do some real cooking here, in a sort of French-inflected Dutch style.  A very pleasant surprise.


Calla's, The Hague -- A Big Deal Michelin Two-Star on a very unprepossessing street in a hot neighborhood.  They talk a lot about how "simple" their food is.  Maybe "simple" for a Big Deal Michelin Two-Star.  Ingredients are allowed to shine, though (and they are GOOOOOOD).  The food is also in that French-inflected Dutch style, and is truly excellent.  Service is like perfect:  they've really mastered combining a modern "casual" style with total Michelin-starred attentiveness.  And I have to mention the attractive crowd:  very tony, casual, evidently local -- and obviously enjoying themselves immensely.


Wilhelminapark, Utrecht -- A restaurant in a building with a big thatched roof in a park.  It was packed:  obviously a local favorite.  And while not approaching the high standards of a place like Calla's, it was a lot better than you'd think a restaurant in a park would be.  It seemed evident on this trip that even simple food isn't that simple in the Netherlands (which was something of a surprise to me).  This was all good stuff, Fancy Dutch you might call it.


Although we didn't eat there, I have to recommend Delft as a destination.  It is like the small Dutch city of your dreams:  gorgeous, welcoming.  I wish we had stayed there.


Keeping it on-topic, we picked up some chocolate at a store called van der Burgh Chocolaad in Delft.  I just had some.  It is fantastic.

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#2 Suzanne F

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Posted 12 April 2018 - 12:47 AM

"I did not come to the land of milk and cows to eat mar-ga-rine" -- a German tourist at breakfast one morning at the place we stayed at in Amsterdam maybe 40 years ago. IIRC, there was just a cold buffet breakfast, with many meats and cheeses and breads and hard-cooked eggs; it was fine for us. Holland was a great place to visit.

I don't actually know what a handbasket is -- but whatever they are, singer-songwriters are in the first ones going to hell. -- Sneakeater, 29 March 2018 - 12:06 AM


notorious stickler -- NY Times
deeply annoying and nitpicking -- Molly O'Neill, One Big Table