3 Luxury Restaurants To Try In Amsterdam

May 02, 2016
3 LUXURY RESTAURANTS TO TRY IN AMSTERDAM
__________________________

Whether you've got the munchies or are just plain ravenous from tip-toeing through the tulips, if you're seeking a gastronomical experience that is refined and just a bit unexpected, I've got just the three restaurants for you. Fuel up, buttercup...



ARISTOCRATIC EATS AT THE W AMSTERDAM
What did I say about the all-encompassing, thoroughly enriching experience that is part and parcel of a stay at The W Amsterdam? Guests only need to hop, skip, and a jump from the front door of the hotel across to the former KAS Bank building to find themselves transported into La Belle Époque. A beautiful era, indeed - The Duchess is a fairly new but already acclaimed addition to the Amsterdam restaurant scene. She is fit for a King, with her royal nature reflected in the refined flavours of Nouveau-Niçoise cuisine (Southern France and Italy), borrowing the elegance of traditional London hospitality balanced with Viennese grandeur. Her majestic marble bar is a time travel experience back to the roaring '20s and '30s, where inventive twists of French and Savoy Apéritif recall the heydays of a historic cocktail era. Everyday is #ThrowbackTuesday at The Duchess - Her Grace is a study of the past and present, imperial sophistication and contemporary comfort. Some would say with prices to match too, so if you want your worth in gold, order the Fruits de Mer (seafood platter).


Royal Beef Tartar - a tad salty for my taste, but otherwise perfectly fresh.


Crunchy Zucchini with Fresh Truffle - a decadent topping on a healthy take on pasta.


Crispy Whitebait - far too salty for my liking...


Fruit De Mer Le Grand - perfection on a platter. Fresh, sweet, juicy, and oh-so-moreish.


Beef Wellington - traditional comfort food.


Hand Crafted Pasta with Braised Short Ribs - again, a fail-safe classic that is satisfying and hearty.


Sicilian Lemon Pie with Citrus Salad served with meringue and white chocolate ice cream 
- absolutely gorgeous and delicate, the perfect sweet ending to a luxurious meal.



_______________



GREEN AMBITIONS
There's a good reason why the human race with all of our technology harken back to our early ancestors' ways when it comes to living well - sometimes the 'tried and tested' route is just so reliable in its simplicity that it needs no further innovation. Case in point - sustainable eating, or growing your own food. De Kas is a restaurant in a chic conservatory with stunning views of surrounding Frankendael Park, and also of its own greenhouse and garden where its vegetables, herbs, and edible flowers are grown. From May to October, guests peek into the nursery hoping for a glimpse of founder and owner Gert Jan Hageman tending to the daily harvest. Ingredients that can't be grown on site like fish and meat are sourced locally so every meal doesn't come with a side of carbon footprint.  De Kas is very much a labour of love and it shows in the impossibly fresh ingredients of the daily set menu. Inspired by rural Mediterranean cuisine, the dishes are delicate and the presentation simple, with light yet exciting flavours. This is green living and clean eating at its best - park life, indeed.



De Kas offers a daily set menu so most of the choice is taken out of your hands - with exceptions of which meat or fish to accompany the courses - which makes each dish that arrive a surprise. Naturally, I was too distracted by my surroundings to take note of our server's description of each course. Their website doesn't list the every-changing menu so you'll just have to go to De Kas and experience the food for yourself.

The dishes were light, unexpected - the chicory salad (left) confounded my meat-loving mother - and best described as creatively healthy. It's just the place for an interesting meal with none of the guilt, although salad-dodgers best avoid - everything is green, clean, and lean.

Lunch 
Three small dishes €18.50 
Main course €20.50 
Dessert €9.50 

Two-course menu €39.00 

Dinner 
Three-course dinner menu €49.50. 



_______________



I THINK I'M TURNING JAPANESE...
My party of three came to Holland in Spring to see the tulips bloom. We weren't expecting to enjoy sakura - cherry blossoms - that iconic Japanese symbol of transient beauty in a traditional Japanese setting. And how immersive and thoroughly Japanese it was: Yamazato, the first traditional kaiseki restaurant outside Japan to win a Michelin Star is thoroughly authentic as proven by the mostly Japanese clientele who no doubt are guests at Okura Hotel. The kaiseki cuisine is influenced by the rituals of Japanese tea ceremony and is an exercise in the Zen philosophy of minimalism and control, with dishes served by expertly trained waitresses in traditional kimono. The ambience of Yamazato at Okura Hotel is one of elegant restrain with the delicate staccato of Japanese spoken barely above by a whisper.  We ordered the seasonal lunch menu, at €50 per person,  for a taste of Spring's mono no aware (the Japanese concept of fleeting beauty). Oishi desu...


 Zensai - simmered squid with sweet rice, tofu of sesame and green peas, white asparagus with plum sauce 


Tsukuri - Sashimi of tuna, brill and yellowtail


Sake Iri-dashi - Deep-fried salmon and simmered bamboo shoot with Dashi


Gyu Fillet Steak - Grilled fillet of beef with Teriyaki sauce


We ordered an extra side of soba noodles because mummy was craving a carb fix...


Nigiri Sushi - an assortment of tuna, sea bass, squid and scallop


Wafu Dessert Green tea mousse and vanilla ice cream



Which of these restaurants do you like the look of best?
The imperial grandeur of The Duchess?
The green credentials of De Kas?
Or the traditional elegance of Yamazato?

Read my previous Amsterdam blog posts:
Arriving at The W Amsterdam

No comments:

Post a Comment