Best Restaurant This is tricky because I find that most restaurants are simply not consistent. For me they have one chance and if they miss it then there is no second visit. I can forgive some things – a less than professional delivery of service is something I have almost come to expect in The Netherlands, but if the service is unfriendly then it’s goodbye! I expect to see food that I don’t prepare at home, food that is fresh, beautiful and served in a glorious way, not too fussy, not too much on a plate but a dance of colour, texture and above all flavour. I expect the front of house to be knowledgable and have passion for their foods and wines but to be able to take criticism if delivered politely. So, that cuts out 99 % of the restaurants in this town! Left in a class of their own are my three top picks for a decent celebratory meal out : Han Ting on Prinsestraat no. 33 delivers a special meal with it’s own brand of Asian fusion using Wagu beef & seafood and get this – they make a gorgeous vegetarian on request as well. Basaal on the Bierkade never fails to deliver on quality and has a strong and loyal following. Mochi (Mallemolen 12 a) with it’s strong Japanese and South American influences has always left me with a desire to eat more. Honourable mention C’est Ca Prinsestraat 130 with a French feel to the menu using local produce.
Best Breakfast. We are pretty nonplussed about the breakfasts on offer in this city. Should you be thinking of starting a cafe could we suggest Eggs Benedict, porridge with fresh raspberry sauce and greek yoghurt, homemade granola and fluffy scrambled eggs, hotcakes with fruit, morining glory muffins etc. But the best we think at present is Baklust on the Veenkade – ask them to toast their lovely sourdough bread though. Omlettes there are very good and the cakes we have already mentioned.
Best Italian for Lunch – Pastanini on the Frederik Hendriklaan. no 79 or the Frederikstraat no 62. This is simple, no nonsense Italian food, pizza, pasta, salads and good coffee. Extremely popular with the international crowd on week day lunchtimes.
Best Pasta – tricky again but Da Braccini on Regentesselaan 24 probably just has it with their homemade truffle pasta. Heard very good things about Vino & Cucina from my Italian friends but alas haven’t made it there as yet. I have a few free nights in my agenda if anyone fancies a night out….
For a quick family meal before going to a film, I have no objections to popping into Vapianos and sharing a plate of pasta or a salad. I am quite fond of their berry mascapone desserty thingie.
Best Pizza – naturally I think it is at my house on a Friday night! I am still looking for the best pizza here and it’s not at Dominos, or Laterna, or VIP as far as I am concerned. La Luna never changes and is prefectly reasonable for a quick family meal on the run (Weissenbruchstraat 79)
Best Cafe for lunch – Naga Thai is my favourite followed by Pastanini on the Fred, Peppermint on the Frederickstraat if you can get a seat, Aan Tafel in Voorburg on the main street, Momiji Sushi on Rabbinjn Maarsenplein for sushi now that Dim Daily is no more!
Finally best place to work off all that food is Sorgvliet park – Go and buy your ticket now! Next post Cranberry chutney…