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Chufi

The foodlover's guide to Amsterdam

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Other news (it´s amazing how much news you can think of when you set your mind to it) is that the season´s new herring is in, and that in my humble opnion it´s the best in years. I´ve been eating a couple of them a week since the season started and I´ve never done that before.. I find myself craving herring at odd moments (and no I´m not pregnant). So don´t miss it!

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We just returned from a few days in Amsterdam- our first time there. Wow! What a beautiful city!!

We stayed at 't Hotel on Leliegracht which is a wonderfully quiet and pretty canal just a few blocks from the Anne Frank House. The hotel was really cute, large rooms, breakfast included. We had a canal view which we loved.

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Next to the hotel is a nice little restaurant - de Luwte. The staff here were very nice, the food good. Nice outdoor seating on the canal, we ate here our first night as it was close, easy and not playing the football game that the entire town was watching! :wink:

The next day was spent sightseeing and museum going. Right by the Van Gogh is a nice little brassiere called Keyzer. We sat outside here and had Heineken Extra Cold- a new marketing gimmick from the brewery and beautiful sandwiches. My was tuna with a poached egg and anchovy aioli, Dayne had a salmon sandwich with herb aioli. It's a tad expensive but we weren't surprised since they are so near the museums. The brassiere specializes in seafood.

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After lunch and the museum we went to the Bols Museum too!! So much fun, and what other museum makes you a cocktail before you leave? :laugh:

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That evening we set out to try Indonesian food and had a wonderful dinner at Tujuh Maret 73. The manager was very helpful in assisting us pick dishes since Dayne is allergic to peanuts. The food was delicious and perfectly spicy! After dinner we wandered to Feijoa for cocktails with the very fun bartender Rob who Dayne learned about on DrinkBoy.com. they have a lot of fun making cocktails here and my martini (ok martinis!) were perfect. Rob even made a tiki drink for someone after we all started talking about them.

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The next morning we met Chufi at a great coffee shop De Koffie Salon 130. After trading tasty goodies (we definitely got the better end of that arrangement Chufi!!!) we were off to a huge street market. Chufi will have to chime in with the name of the street as I didn't write it down. This market had everything from bikes, to shoes, to spices, and flowers. I had some frites which were tasty but could have been a bit crisper. We also had herring which was delicious!!! Dayne and I had ours with onions and pickles, while Chufi had hers on a bun. The pickles are boardering on sweet which really played nicely with the onion and the raw fish. I really didn't expect to like herring that much but it was really good!!!

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The rest of the afternoon was spent sightseeing some more and shopping, there are so many awesome cheese shops in Amsterdam!!

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That night we met Chufi and Markemorse and their SA's for a VERY fun dinner at Marmoosh Moroccan restaurant. I had a tagine of lamb which was delicious. there was a slightly sweet, smoky flavor that I loved.

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It was so nice to see Chufi again and to meet Markemorse. Thanks guys for coming out!!! And Chufi thank you again so much for showing us some of your amazing city. We will absolutely be back!!!

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Hi all Amsterdamers. I just moved here from the culinary wasteland called Luxembourg and am thrilled to see this post.

Can someome give me an idea of the good sushi bars in town? I am living on the JozephIsrael street right now but will be permanently living on the Eerste Constantijn Huygensstraat. Thanks

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hey DCMark, welcome to town...I don't have any up to date sushi recs, i'll do some asking around....

Unrelatedly, I just gave someone a bunch of recommendations for your new 'hood the other day, I'll reprint them here for our convenience:

Starting a bit further west, the Jan Pieter Heijestraat is a little more than halfway down the Overtoom, and there are a few places here that I like: Abyssinia for extremely friendly Ethiopian, my favorite in a town full of good Ethiopian food. Paloma Bianca is a very good Moroccan place that I haven't been to in a little while but I've heard it's still great. No alcohol is served here (but they have great fresh mint tea!), and service happens at a very leisurely pace, but it's nice food.

You might also try Proef on the Overtoom for interesting beers and wines.

I've covered Toko Ikan Mas upthread...their loempias aren't as amazing as they used to be, but the maiskoekjes (corn fritters with lemongrass) and lempers (sticky rice filled with coconut chicken curry) are great as are the rendangs and most everything else.

There's also a nice fishmonger across the street from Toko Ikan Mas, also on the 1e Constantijn Huygensstraat, Smit Volendammer Vishandel.

Just a block or two up from these two is somewhere I haven't been but that Chufi and I have been hearing good things about: Zina, another North African restaurant.

Abyssinia. Jan Pieter Heijestraat 190

Paloma Blanca, Jan Pieter Heijestraat 145

Proef, Overtoom 160.

Toko Ikan Mas, 1e Constantijn Huygensstraat 61.

Smit Volendammer Vishandel, J, Eerste Constantijn Huygensstraat 92.

Zina, Bosboom Toussaintstraat 70bg.

+++


Edited by markemorse (log)

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Hello, I'm a fellow Amsterdamer (well actually I'm Canadian but as I've been officially integrated, what the ....)

A favourite restaurant of ours in Amsterdam which actually serves traditionalish dutch food is one called Dorrius which is near central station attached to the crown plaza hotel. Apart from the food which is good (as far as dutch food goes) the service is unbelievable - which is definitely not a dutch trait. We always take out of towners here.

Also a fun place to go and the food was quite interesting - the supper club. You won't know what you're eating or what will happen (it is theatre and cool music and you sit on beds). Worth a try.

A few other places but i can't remember the names - one french one where there is a different chef every night - and you are just served whatever they create. nice location but i'll get back to you on the name..

i'll keep thinking...

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oh sorry i forgot the sushi thing.

we usually go to a place that is behind the shopping centre in amstelveen, near the macdonalds around the back. There are always japanese there , it's quite reasonable and you can even keep a bottle of sake there for whenever you go. Quite good for here but nothing like North America or Japan. There are a couple of smaller places in town but with parking and everything it ends up being a pain for us. One on stationweg 249 called Issa. But to be honest i've found a decent fish monger nearby and I've been making my own. For supplies go to Delicatessan Schilla in gelderlaan plein.

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Markemore, thanks for the recs. Actually I am living in the same building as that fishstore!

Please keep me in mind for the next Amsterdam get-together. Thanks

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...one french one where there is a different chef every night - and you are just served whatever they create.  nice location but i'll get back to you on the name..

hey kermie, welcome to the thread....

is it Lof, on Haarlemmerstraat?

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DCmark, welcome to the thread and to Amsterdam!

But to be honest i've found a decent fish monger nearby and I've been making my own. 

Hi kermie and welcome!

may I ask where is your fishmonger.. i'm looking for a good one that's nearer to my house than the Albert Cuyp market, now that I've moved to another part of town.

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Hi,

thanks for the welcomes!

My fishmonger is in badhoevedorp as I live in the west of amsterdam near osdorp (de aker actually). I also came across what seemed to be a good one (I was recommended it) in the bijlmer arena shopping area - next to the tokos.

oh and a good cookshop for pots etc is kookkadoo (sp?) there are a couple but I go to the one in hilversum.

Do any amsterdammers want to meet up?

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I would love a meetup, with a mix of new and experienced folks especially.

Chufi, any sushi recs?

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Best sushi in town is probably served at the Okura Hotel, Ferdinand Bolstraat in De Pijp.

EDIT:

The restaurant, there are four, all of them really good, is Yamazato. They have their own website:

http://www.yamazato.nl/


Edited by Betamax (log)

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hate to say it but that is the place where I saw a mouse run across the floor and when I discretely mentioned this to the staff - he shrugged and said - this is amsterdam.

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Ouch... That's insane.

Medi-Ya at Beethovenstraat in Oud-Zuid used to be good for take-out. Haven't been there for quit some time, so not sure if it's still up to standards.

Also, Kaiko at Jekerstraat in Rivierenbuurt was pretty nice. And loads of Japanese there. Again, haven't been there for a long time (lived in Barcelona for two years, and when coming back, moved to another part of Amsterdam).

EDIT

Got the name for Kaiko wrong, sorry.


Edited by Betamax (log)

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From a seafood perspective it makes no sense that there's not more affordable good sushi around town, but then again...there aren't a ton of Japanese people here.

There are a couple of places that look interesting that I haven't tried.

Kagetsu, on the Van Woustraat, and Kaiko, in the Rivierenbuurt.

Anyone been?

ETA: I just realized that Betamax and I are talking about the same place. So that seems like a good address. How about Kagetsu?


Edited by markemorse (log)

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I agree wih Markemorse on the whole fresh thing. Seems wrong.

When I lived in Barcelona, Barceloneta to be precise, one of the poorest areas, but with a vibrant restaurant and tapas culture, one could get the best fish, clams and shellfish for a dirt cheap price at the market or at a small eating house. Good times... Oh well...

Haven't been to Kagetsu. Would like to hear who has been.

On another note: heard good things about the fresh stuff Andalusia offer at Van Woustraat, but reviews at Iens are rather poor. Seems the Johannes van Dam curse (the most important restaurant reviewer in Amsterdam) has striked again...

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I'm by no means a sushi connoisseur, but.. I've been to Kagetsu (the one in hartenstraat, they have 2 restaurants) and liked it.

I used to like Morita-Ya on Zeedijk, but haven't been for years.

I've been meaning to try Zen Japans Delicatessenhuis on Frans Halsstraat 38 for a long time. It's been getting consitently good reviews on Iens.

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In the Good News Department: one of my favorite restaurants, Orontes (Southern Turkish cuisine)opened another restaurant in Amsterdam West, appropriately called Orontes West. The address isn't on their homepage yet, but you can find it here.

The place is an exact copy from the one on the Albert Cuypstraat: same menu, and even some of the same staffmembers. Service is friendly (if not always completely efficient) and cordial as ever, and the food is just as good. Go for an assortment of the appetizers (my favorites are the cold octopussalad and the aubergine with pomegranate syrup, and last time we had the most amazing fried mussels) and then if you have room, order the grilled lamb or the fish of the day - everything freshly grilled, and served with bulgur and salad.

edited to add: while Orontes Albert Cuyp has a couple of tables on the sidewalk of a busy street, Orontes West has a nice terrace which makes it a better chice for summer outdoor dining. It's a bit out of the city center but this also makes it easier to get seats on the terrace!


Edited by Chufi (log)

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Hmm. I will give Orontes West a try this weekend, maybe. Will report if I do.

Has anybody been to Open at Westerdoksplein? Was there two weeks ago. The food was okay, service pretty nice, the wine acceptable, but in the end I wasn't blown away. Paid 130 euros plus 20 euros tip for two, which seemed a bit too much.

Lobster was offered outside the menu and everybody in the restaurant was eating it (saw it on the plates while we waited for our nine o'clock table). When we were seated we were told it was gone. No worries, though I wouldn't minded lobster for dinner. But when were having coffee I found it a bit strange to see the personnel eating lobster right in front of us.

The steak tartare though (always on the menu, as far as I am aware) was very tasty, as were the desserts.

It's a good place for just a main, or maybe two, three half portions of starters and a glass of wine, but it's really not the destination place for a multi course meal with a selection of wines, like we did, I think.


Edited by Betamax (log)

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Hmm. I will give Orontes West a try this weekend, maybe. Will report if I do.

Has anybody been to Open at Westerdoksplein? Was there two weeks ago. The food was okay, service pretty nice, the wine acceptable, but in the end I wasn't blown away. Paid 130 euros plus 20 euros tip for two, which seemed a bit too much.

Lobster was offered outside the menu and everybody in the restaurant was eating it (saw it on the plates while we waited for our nine o'clock table). When we were seated we were told it was gone. No worries, though I wouldn't minded lobster for dinner. But when were having coffee I found it a bit strange to see the personnel eating lobster right in front of us.

The steak tartare though (always on the menu, as far as I am aware) was very tasty, as were the desserts.

It's a good place for just a main, or maybe two, three half portions of starters and a glass of wine, but it's really not the destination place for a multi course meal with a selection of wines, like we did, I think.

Thanks for the report, Betamax. I remember checking this place out when they first opened, with morbid curiosity, I think maybe because Mr. van Dam had written a glowing review. Has anyone ever been to a restaurant to which JvD has given a glowing review and found the experience "satisfying" at all?

I just don't understand how he exists. His levels of tolerance for price, service, and excitement are so far off-kilter from mine that I tend to avoid anywhere that he's liked. But I think Chufi already said this kind of thing somewhere upthread.

:raz:

+++

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Well, I have been to De Kas (couple of years ago) after they had a raving review of Van Dam and I found the place very, very good. Same goes for Van Vlaanderen and A Tavola. So, it depends. Sometimes a restaurant can't cope with the sudden rush of people flocking there, most of them expecting high quality.


Edited by Betamax (log)

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Has anybody been to Open at Westerdoksplein? Was there two weeks ago. The food was okay, service pretty nice, the wine acceptable, but in the end I wasn't blown away. Paid 130 euros plus 20 euros tip for two, which seemed a bit too much.

Lobster was offered outside the menu and everybody in the restaurant was eating it (saw it on the plates while we waited for our nine o'clock table). When we were seated we were told it was gone. No worries, though I wouldn't minded lobster for dinner. But when were having coffee I found it a bit strange to see the personnel eating lobster right in front of us.

The steak tartare though (always on the menu, as far as I am aware) was very tasty, as were the desserts.

It's a good place for just a main, or maybe two, three half portions of starters and a glass of wine, but it's really not the destination place for a multi course meal with a selection of wines, like we did, I think.

Betamax, I was there a couple of days ago, and was going to post about it, but you seem to have described my experience pretty well :smile:

but just to add a couple of things...

the view is gorgeous, and if you can get a table outside, you can have a very nice outdoor dinner (for which there are, in my opinion, not enough possibilities in Amsterdam) .

I had the cod croquettes, which were very tasty, husband had the steak tartare which he really liked. Then I had the half portion of steak frites with bearnaise, and he had the half portion of Eggplant parmesan. My steak was perfectly cooked, the frites were good, the bearnaise quite good. I did not like the eggplant much.. it tasted like it had been reheated a couple of times. The icecreams we had for dessert were all excellent as was the molten chocolate cake.

All in all, the food is nothing fancy or mindblowingly original, but it's pretty good. And I REALLY like the fact that they serve most of the apps and main dishes in both half and regular portions. Very waist and budget friendly I think. Our total bill for 3 courses each and 4 glasses of wine was 70 EUR.


Edited by Chufi (log)

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Thanks for the report, Betamax. I remember checking this place out when they first opened, with morbid curiosity, I think maybe because Mr. van Dam had written a glowing review. Has anyone ever been to a restaurant to which JvD has given a glowing review and found the experience "satisfying" at all?

I just don't understand how he exists. His levels of tolerance for price, service, and excitement are so far off-kilter from mine that I tend to avoid anywhere that he's liked. But I think Chufi already said this kind of thing somewhere upthread.

:raz:

+++

I think his reviews used to be much more ´to the point´. van Vlaanderen, Segugio, and A Tavola are examples of excellent restaurants he gave a great review... years ago.

He recently gave Pollux a 8+ I think, I ate there a couple of months ago and it was ... quite bad.

But, Bouchon du Centre has been praised by some of my knowledgeable friends, and he gave that a 9.5 if I´m correct. It´s pretty high on my list of things to try.

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