Angelica’s places to eat in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is a great city for food and foodies.
You might think that the Dutch don’t have great food and a food tradition like France or Italy, they have come a long way baby.
The fact that the globe has shrunk through easy travel and internet, opened up the whole world for everybody and especially the Dutch. The Dutch can have about 2 months off work and they do travel! But back to food.
The Dutch bitterballen and frikadel aside, there is a growing number of Michelin starred restaurants in the Netherlands, a little over 100 of which two with 3* and 18 with 2* in 2013, up from 15 2* in 2012.
Aside of the Michelin starred restaurants there are a ton of great places to have lunch or dinner.
My newest discovery, though they celebrated their 10th anniversary, is Restaurant Blue Pepper, an Indonesian restaurant, exquisite for Rijsttafel.
Rijsttafel at Restaurant Blue Pepper, AmsterdamTo quote from their website: “Blue Pepper serves authentic Indonesian cuisine with a distinct West Javanese accent and a contemporary touch.”
The flavors are so pure and distinctly layered, a very fresh feeling in your mouth, if you could say that of food that has a lot of spices and herbs, without overpowering the different nuances. Blue Pepper’s rijsttafel consist of 16 dishes, on the picture is the 3rd course!, finishing with a delicious trio of sweets. Price: 70 euro without drinks.

A more modestly priced dinner I had on a beautiful summer evening strolling through and over Amsterdam’s canal streets, with the canals overflowing with happy people, because the sun is out and staying, thank you very much.Amsterdam on a summer day

At Leliegracht 34/corner Keizersgracht there is da Portare Via, a pizza take out. Nothing fancy but delicious pizza baked in a wood fueled oven right in front of you. You can take it out or have your pizza sitting outside, watching the locals enjoying their summer.

da Portare Via da Portare Via bakingEat your pizza sitting outside addresses for da Portare Via

Or you can do as the students do and buy your fresh fruits and veggies on one of the many farmers markets in Amsterdam.

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And because it’s summertime in Amsterdam and there is actually a real summer feeling, you just grab a chair and your goodies from the farmers market and you enjoy the sun and lunch al fresco with friends.

What is your way to celebrate summer in your city?

I will be changing the name of the blog to Angelica’s Delights. That covers all the delightful activities that I want to tell you about, of course starting with food, but also travel, gardens, culture and the good life, the delightful life. So from the next post, watch out for Angelica’s Delights.

Please let me know what you think, see you around.

7 or more things to do in Curaçao

If you are so lucky to visit my island Curaçao, here are my favorite places to visit for good food and music.
1. Monday’s at Cafe Restaurant de Heeren it is Salads at half price, for lunch or dinner. I love their Thai Beef salad. Comes in small or regular portion.
2. Tuesday’s it is at O’mundo, where you can start the evening with a nice dinner and stay for Juni Juliet, a great entertainer and singer.
3. Wednesday’s is for me sushi day at Craving Sushi, I go here for lunch. In the evening you can grab a movie, 2 for 1, at the Cinemas in the Renaissance Mall.
4. Thursday evening from 8-10 pm you can enjoy live Jazz at Blues at Avila Hotel with great musicians like Hershel Rosario and David Ronchi Matthews , who both played at Curaçao North Sea Jazz Festival. CNSJ is held at the end of August. Must see.
Before Jazz you can have dinner in the area of Penstraat where the Avila Hotel is, where you have a choice of good restaurants like Fishalicious, Pane e Vino, Seasons Restaurant, Batavia Club 1920 and Rozenendaels, where the tenderloin is always good.
5. On Friday you can hop from Happy Hour to Happy Hour, starting as early as 4.00 pm or stay in one area, for instance Pietermaai, and enjoy Happy Hour at Miles Jazz Cafe, from 5.30-6.30 and continue down the street to have dinner at Mundo Bizzaro, where they also have a Happy Hour from 5.30-6.30.
6. Saturday is for me the day I play golf. You can enjoy a round of golf at Old Quarry Golf Course at the Hyatt or at Blue Bay Curaçao. I play at Curacao Golf & Squash Club on Saturday afternoon, the course is then only open for competition.
7. On Sunday I’m winding down and chill out at home. You on the other hand could go for a trip to Klein Curaçao with Miss Ann Boat trips. In the evening I go dance salsa at Hemingway.
And then we start over again. Next time I can tell you about other wonderful places and things to do on Curaçao. You can check out activities at K-Pasa or Go Weekly.

These are a few of my favorite things, I hope you have a chance to enjoy them when you visit Curaçao or that you have enjoyed it now with this virtual visit to Curaçao.
Tell me your favorite things to do if you already have visited Curaçao. I’d love to here from you.

Good food, good wine, good company

Last September 2012, Thérèse Boer of De Librije was in Curaçao, where she hosted a wine tasting held at Angelica’s Kitchen for a group of 40 guests. The wine tasting was organized by Dorine van den Elzen, who regularly gives workshops in Curaçao about wine and food pairing.
De Librije is a famous Dutch restaurant with 3 Michelin stars and is run by Jonnie Boer as the 3* chef and his wife Thérèse Boer as the host and wine master. It was interesting to learn how temperature, glass size and airing of the wine can influence the flavor of the wine. The same red wine served just 2-3 degrees warmer has such a different aroma and flavor. In Curaçao we often drink white wine straight from the fridge, which is at about 8 °C, a lot cooler than in Europe. When in Holland/outside the Caribbean I will have it at the normal temperature of 12-14 °C.
This October I had a chance to visit de Librije for the first time – I hope to go more often. I went with two dear friends and I have to say we had a ball. The food, the wine, the company was excellent. On the above photo you can see one of the amuses we had, a steak tartare on top of chives mayonnaise, a delicate balance of flavors and textures. This time I didn’t take a lot of pictures to show you, I was to busy enjoying the food and the wine, you’ll have to believe me that it is totally worth every euro for the 8 course menu + wine pairing that I had. Next time I’m in Holland I’ll do a workshop at de Librije’s atelier and stay at their hotel.
When you are on vacation, do you take cooking classes or go to Michelin star restaurants? Share your experience. And please let me know what you think of the post.