Arriba Arriba, the new Mexican hotspot in Amsterdam!

Are you ready for a new South American hotspot in Amsterdam? Arriba Arriba will open its doors on the Rozengracht on the 1st of February.

Arriba Arriba is a Mexican street food hang-out with South American influences. You can go here from noon for quick taco’s or to dine extensively, 7 days a week. All dishes on the menu are created for sharing. Perfect for two or with a large group of friends. Arriba Arriba is a concept created by the IQ Creative team, that also brought you Happyhappyjoyjoy. For the concept and interior, they have joined forces with architects Concrete and JPS.

the word streetfood or ‘antojitos‘  literally means cravings

A quick bite or a long meal
In a country where 50% of the population buys their food on the street, the word streetfood or ‘antojitos‘  literally means cravings. At Arriba Arriba you will have the option to go for a quick mean taco or lunch. All tacos are created with authentic Mexican tortillas from Taiyari and baked according to the method of the old Aztecs. The toppings vary, from crispy pescado with crispy cabbage and lime, to rib-eye with chimichurri and avocado, or pulpo ‘octopus’ with sweet potato and pickled onion. You will also find healthy salads, and other bites such as oysters on the menu.
Starters and main courses do not exist here, just pick and choose want you want to try. Good to know that all tortillas and tostada’s are gluten-free!  The menu also offers plenty of choice for vegetarians.


Mexican street food? Yes please!

A typical Mexican restaurant with a modern twist

Modern and Mexican interior
We haven’t seen it yet but word is that it’s going to look and feel like a typical Mexican restaurant with a modern twist. The inspiration for the interior comes from the Mexican architect Luis Barragán, who works a lot with color, light and shadow, without losing any subtlety. The elongated space on the Rozengracht will becomes an atmospheric and cheerful place with areas of color. The decoration will consist of modern objects and will be filled with natural materials such as cactus and rattan. It’s also going to be quite spacious as the restaurant easily seats 150 people and is also perfect for people that just want to drink a Mexican beer or Margarita.

We can’t wait to visit this Mexican hotspot!

Arriba Arriba
Rozengracht 114 , Amsterdam
Website

Love,

Elke

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Everything green at Matcha Bar in Amsterdam!

Amsterdam couldn’t stay behind, it’s Matcha everything at the new Matcha Bar and we love it! 

What is Matcha?
I first tried Matcha when I was in one of my healthy periods where I would try pretty much any weird superfood. I used Matcha powder in my smoothies but that was about it. I discovered it again when I was in Hong Kong several years ago. Matcha tea and Matcha coffee. I liked it immediately and noticed the little green stuff also gave me a boost, something that coffee does, but this boost felt a bit stronger. Ok, Matcha is something special I guess.


Matcha tea

So what is it? It’s finely ground powder of specially grown and processed green tea leaves. It contains both caffeine and theanine. This combination of chemicals is for the (calm) energy people might feel from drinking matcha. It originated in China but is used is many Asian cultures such as Japan.

Being the city of hotspots, Amsterdam picked up this trend  and The Matcha Bar opened their doors a few weeks ago. Here you can eat and drink Matcha until you see green. Literally.

What’s on the Menu?
Matcha Latte’s, tea’s (including Japanese bubble tea!), waffles, cakes (in all shapes and sizes), pastries and even Matcha pudding. You can feast your eyes on the green stuff and the funky pastel coloured interior. Come inside, grab a seat or take out. 


Yes please!

The Matcha Bar
Albert Cuypstraat, 89, Amsterdam
Open from Wed – Sun 12 – 8pm
Website

*Header photo credit: @flavorist_and_crossfiter

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Back in Amsterdam » Modern Asian Cuisine, Umami by Han

If you love Asian food, you’re going to be pleased about the return of Umami by Han in Amsterdam. The restaurant concept was first brought to live in Utrecht with then many restaurants to follow. Amsterdam used to have a all you can eat location on the Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal but this closed 2 years ago due to a difference in vision between Michelin chef Han (known from Michelin Star HanTing Cuisine in Den Haag) and his business partner.

The Concept
Now, Han’s original concept returns  back with the modern Asian dining experience that is all about the Umami philosophy. The word Umami is all about keeping different flavours in balance. The tastes of sweet, salty, bitter and sour are familiar to us, but there is a fifth taste we can perceive with our tongue, umami. Its taste has been described as rounded, rich and savoury. It’s usually matched with salt to add depth and complexity to foods that may lack depth and complexity on their own. “If you take ginger for example, your body actually needs something to balance it out, this could be cucumber.” We try to implement this to all our dishes” Chi, the restaurant manager tells me.

The Overtoom
The location is something you may have been before. At the beginning of the Overtoom, where concept store Friday Next used to be. They have completely changed it and you won’t believe your eyes. The restaurant is deep and spacious, with a Asian style bar at the entrance. The open kitchen looks amazing and the latern lights plus Asian wall art completes the look & feel. The restaurant is also open during the day for a quick business lunch or à la card meal, but you can also walk in for a coffee or glass of wine.

Umami by Han in Amsterdam
The open kitchen

Bar Umami by han, Amsterdam

The Menu
You can choose between the 3-course Social Dining Menu for €27,50 or the Menu Gastronomique for €31,95. You can find signature dishes like Teriyaki Chicken, Bangkok Prawns or Orange Duck, alongside Truffle Paksoi, Spicy Eggplant or Little Gem. You can order an extra course for an additional 8 euro per dish. Deserts are available for only €5,- and the menu consists of Matcha Cake, Pandan Créme Brûlée or a Choco Brownie, yum!

food at Umami by han in Amsterdam
Beautiful balanced food for a small price

scallops at Umami, Amsterdam
Scallops à la Umami by Han

Matcha cake, Umami by Han, Amsterdam
This desert is ready to be eaten!

I can’t believe that a modern Asian cuisine can be so good and yet so affordable! Get your hungry ass over here, cause this place is of of the best food discoveries of this month!

Umami
Overtoom 31H, Amsterdam
020-2801379
Website

More tasty hotspots in Amsterdam? ↓

Mama Kelly Amsterdam Meal

These are the coolest Concept Stores in Amsterdam

Fashion and apparel concept stores are popping up all over the world, so is Amsterdam. A great experience where you find a combination of fashion, food, furniture, books, art, all-in one! It involves more than just shopping, inspiring places where you can wander around and discover new and secondhand stuff where it’s hard to leave empty handed.

Read more

Recipes » Dutch Winter Meals

Food, food, food, we love it! One of the best things about traveling is that we get to taste different cuisines. We love it all!
Asian, Mexican, Italian, French, you name it! But as we are both from the Netherlands, we thought it would be nice to show you some authentic Dutch winter meals! We’ve selected 2 favorites that perfectly suit the cold season:

Hutspot
This dish includes a whole bunch of potatoes and it mostly combined with vegetables such as cabbage, carrots or kale. The idea is that you mash the veggies and potatoes together so you get one mashed dish.
It’s mostly served with meat such as porkchops, big meatballs or sausages with gravy.

The recipe for a traditional “Hutspot” (Carrots & Potatoes) like the picture below is quite simple:

Cook 1kg potatoes together with about 1kg big carrots for about 15 minutes. Once cooked, remove the water and start frying some finely cut onions into a separate pan with butter. After glazing them, add the onions into the pan with the potatoes and carrots and start mashing them together. Add a tablespoon of mustard and 50ml of semi skimmed milk. You can add 150 ml of vegetable stock for extra flavour, but reduce the milk for it becomes too watery. Add some salt and pepper and top it of with some gravy and a (veggie) sausage. Yummie!

“These 2 Dutch winter meals will keep you warm this season!”

Dutch winter meals

Ewrtensoep (Dutch traditional split pea soup)

»300g dried green split peas
»100 g thick-cut bacon (for the vegetarian version you can use smoked veggie bacon from the vegetarian butcher.)
»1 stock cube (vegetable or chicken are both fine)
»2-3 carrots, cut into 1 cm cubes
»1 large potato, peeled and cubed (optional)
»1 small onion, chopped
»1 small leek, sliced
»half a celeriac, cubed
»Salt and pepper, to taste
»a handful of chopped celery leaves
»a handful of sliced smoked sausage (Dutch Rookworst) I used 2 vegetarian sausages

Dutch winter meals

For the best results you should rinse and set the split peas into cold water for about 1 hour. After that you boil the split peas with the pork chop and bacon. Let it boil for about 45 minutes and skim off the floating scum. Pour all water off, rinse peas (and meat) again and put them back on the fire with clean water if possible. Meanwhile, prepare the vegetables:
Cut the skin of the celeriac, peel the potatoes, and dice celeriac and potatoes. Peel the carrot and dice it. Cut the leeks and wash them. Add the vegetables to the pan and let simmer until the peas are done (one hour at least, the split peas must be broken). Twenty minutes before the end of cooking, add the whole smoked sausage and celery leaves. Taste, finish off with pepper and salt. The pea soup is still fairly liquid. Let it cool completely and reheat it the next day, or freeze in portions. When you want to freeze the soup, add the smoked sausage when reheating, or divide the sausage in equal quantities over the portions. » Skip the meat for a vegetarian version and add a veggie sausage at the end.

These 2 dishes will keep you warm during the winter time!

Love,

Elke

Our favourite Veggie Pita spot in Amsterdam is now open daily!

If you’ve been to a Dutch food festival or the Sunday Market, you must have heard of Vleesch noch Visch. This famous veggie stand is one of those places you keep coming back for. They started off with a tiny stand on food markets and expanded over the years where they opened a kiosk in Amsterdam West, near the Westerpark. Good news for those who can’t wait for the weekend, they are now open daily from 12 till 9pm!

Veggie pita Vleesch noch Visch
The famous Greek veggie pita 

Vleesch noch Visch became famous because of their Greek veggie pita that has people queuing up for. At the kiosk they also offer other meals such as a Mi Gado pita, fries, soups and salads. Vegans don’t worry, most meals are easily turned into vegan. There are tables and benches to enjoy your favourite meal at, and you will find that people from all over the city come here for a bite. I have been a fan since the beginning but now that more people starting to embrace vegetarian and vegan meals, this place is set to be even more popular than ever.

Happy eating!

Elke

Vleesch noch Visch
Schaepmansstraat 2, Amsterdam
Website

*Header photo source: Vleesch noch Visch

Mama Kelly Amsterdam has released their opening date!

The highly anticipated opening of Mama Kelly in Amsterdam is finally close. The popular restaurant already has a location in Den Haag, but is coming to Amsterdam this November.

mamakellyamsterdambar
The interior is a dream

mamakellyamsterdamdining

‘Pink is not a color, it’s an attitude’

The menu at Mama Kelly is simple. Chicken or Lobster, or both! Okok, they will offer some extra’s but these are the signature dishes you can expect. The interior is something that you will see a lot of across Instagram these coming months. It’s pink and bloggers love anything pink right? Let’s hope for Mama Kelly that the hype will last but if we look at the other location, this won’t be a problem whatsoever. 

Mama Kelly Amsterdam Meal
Food at Mama Kelly Amsterdam

You can now book your table for the 13th of November, when they officially open, through their website

Mama Kelly Amsterdam
Olympisch Stadion 35, Amsterdam
020 – 225 26 84
www.mama-kelly.nl

Love,

Elke

The Avocado Show is going international!

We all know that the Avocado Show was going to be popular. Tourist from all over the world visited the avocado restaurant since it opened in last December. Good news for those who haven’t had a chance yet to check it out. The Avocado Show is going international!

The Avocado Show goes International
The avocado madness started last December

Thanks to Shawn Harris, the woman behind Nature’s Pride, one of the largest Avocado supplier in the world. She believed in the Dutch entrepreneurs from the beginning and is now going to invest 5 million euro so they can expand abroad.

At the moment they are talking to 10 different countries and they are focusing on major cities like Dubai, Bangkok and capitals in Europe. They are eventually planning to open around a hundred restaurants. They are also looking to open a second restaurant in Amsterdam.

Read more about the Avocado Show here:

the-avocado-show

 

Love,

Elke

5 Vegan Spots in Amsterdam you probably haven’t heard of

Amsterdam has recently become the vegan capital of Europe with a large number of vegan restaurants & snack bars. Other restaurants offer more vegan options than ever. You have probably heard of a few big names such as the Vegan Junk Food Bar, Meatless District, Dophert and the newly opened Mr. & Mrs. Watson. But I’m pretty sure you haven’t heard of these vegan spots in Amsterdam..

MKZEerste Schinkelstraat 16
This all vegan spot is kind of special. Why? Well, it’s a collective run restaurant and you can get a 3-course meal for only 5 euro! That’s right, that little green piece of paper you always buy nothing with. Okok, the food isn’t served on a Instagram worthy plate and there is no table service, but reading all the reviews, people are extremely positive about this hidden spot. You get a vegan soup to start, a big plate with vegan food and if you are lucky, the dessert is something with chocolate. Oh, and there is just one thing; you need to wash your own dishes at the end. No biggie I think, considering you practically eat for free. They are open for dinner only and you need to give them a call to book a table. 0206790712

mkz-vegan-spots-in-amsterdam
At MKZ you eat a plate like this for only 5 euro!

Mezebar BodrumSurinamestraat 5
Right at the end (or beginning) of the Overtoom, you will find the Surinameplein where tram 1 and 17 come together. Just over the bridge that connects the west with the center, you have a small passage with small take away joints such as Asian, Suriname and Italian food. In the middle of this, you will find this hidden vegan spot. I discovered it by chance because I walked passed and saw a sign that said: vegan pitta. I got curious and took a look inside where I spoke to a lovely Dutch lady. One of the owners has been a vegan for over 15 years and she decided to offer a full vegan meze plate to her customers. Something I haven’t heard of before in Amsterdam! They have also received a Happy Cow recommendation, a platform that is holy to all vegan’s & veggies around the world. Having their sticker stuck onto your restaurant window is like receiving 5 out of 5 on Tripadvisor in vegan land. Instagram

Mezebar Bodrum, vegan spots in Amsterdam
One of the most undiscovered vegan spots in Amsterdam!

Spirit, Czaar Peterstraat 2a
Coming from Rotterdam, this buffet restaurant offers a whole lot of vegan food that you will love! There is vegan beer, vegan wine, vegan everything! You pay by weight and trust me, you will fill up your plate! I first saw this concept in Prague where I couldn’t stop coming to this vegetarian buffet restaurant and I was hoping that something like this would come to Amsterdam. All the dishes at Spirit are homemade, organic and created with love. No bullshit, no chemicals, just pure food that you will love. www.spiritrestaurants.nl/amsterdam

spirit-vegan-restaurant-amsterdam
Source

Loving HutAdmiraal de Ruijterweg 334
Tucked away in Amsterdam Old West (sounds like a Western movie doesn’t it?), you will find the Loving Hut. It’s been around in Amsterdam since 2015 but they are part of the Loving Hut chain that you can find elsewhere in the world. They have more than 200 outlets in major cities all over the world! So what do they offer? Mostly Asian dishes plus some of the famous Dutch fast food snacks you will wake up for. Burgers, “broodje croquet” and more. Yup, the Vegan Junk Food Bar isn’t the only vegan comfort food joint in tha house! At Loving Hut the food is simple, cheap and tasty. And we must admit, we didn’t know it existed since 2 weeks ago! Join us in discovering this award winning vegan spot. www.lovinghut.com

loving-hut, vegan spots in Amsterdam

Zest For Life raw food cafe, Van Baerlestraat, 45
More than just a raw food bat for sure! This place offers detox vacations in Turkey, juice that will clear your body and exercises that will clear your head. But let’s not talk about that. Let’s talk about the raw food cafe for a minute. At the raw food cafe they show you that raw food doesn’t have to be boring. On the menu you will find slow juices, pancakes, cakes, wraps, pizza and even a pad thai noodle dish. It’s not big inside but they have a little garden! They are open everyday till 6pm except on Mondays. www.zestforlife.nl

Zest for life, vegan spots in Amsterdam

Maybe you’ve heard of a few, but we are sure you haven’t heard of them all! Enjoy discovering!

Love,

Elke

Why vegan? Check out our first ever vegan article!

Masterchef winner opens Restaurant Petossi in Haarlem

I’ve got a crush on Haarlem. It’s like the little sister of Amsterdam with all the charming canals, characteristic buildings and lots of trendy (healthy) hotspots, but then without the chaotic overload of tourists. Since this week Haarlem is even more fun by the advent of the brand new Restaurant Petossi. The proud owner is Brabander Bart van Berkel, you might know him as the winner of Masterchef 2014. Last week I was asked by Wander-Lust, to join the official lunch tasting and the opening of this new kid in town. Thumbs up for the well-deserved master chef, I’m a Petossi fan!

The story behind Restaurant Petossi Haarlem
‘OK, what are your first thoughts by seeing the name Petossi?’, I asked my table mates. Most of the foodies, including myself, made the association with ‘la bella Italia’ or the ‘bellissimo Italian cuisine.’ No, wrong! The very sympathetic Bart explained that ‘Petossi’  is actually a kale stew in Brabant, the Dutch southern region where his roots lie. It’s the icon and pride of the Dutch cuisine and a nice story behind the restaurant brand. Petossi stands for seasonal flavors with authentic products and multi culinary influences that play a leading role. And for sure, the Brabant roots and feel have gained their place in the part; raw versus very stylish ambiance.

restaurant-petossi

 

Petossi gives you the chance to choose between 2 to 6 courses, from a quick bite to an extensive dinner.

The Petossi menu in a nutshell
Don’t expect a regular menu. No, eating out at Petossi means you’ll be surprised: you’ll have to take potluck! Petossi gives you the chance to choose between 2 to 6 courses, from a quick bite to an extensive dinner. Which number of courses suits you the best? Good to know: their menu changes regularly on the offer of mother nature. And no worries in case you’ve got a food allergy. Notify the team and the creative food brains will create the most delicious, out-of-the-box creations for you.

header-restaurant-petossi-haarlem-interieur
Petossi’s interior

Upon entry there was one huge wooden table covered for about 25 foodies. And so cool, they had golden cutlery – no Brabant soberness at all ;)! I was really surprised by the 6 course lunch menu Bart and his team had created. It was all pearls for the eye, pure craftsmanship. I absolutely loved them all, especially the wild duck with sauce of licorice, apple syrup, blueberry, carrot cream and hazelnut. I also loved the panna cotta of basil – very surprising for a real sweet tooth – , strawberry sorbet, rhubarb and gin foam. Even though it was only 11:30 in the morning, during every course it was ‘wine o’clock’. I’m not such a wine connoisseur, but the very professional team of hospitality experts told me lots of why they had picked that specific red or white wine. This is the way how eating out should be done, credits to team Petossi for that one.

Restaurant Petossi
Beautiful plates with golden cutlery 

restaurant Petossi
The panna cotta of basil, amazing!

During their first period they’ll only be open for dinner on Tuesday till Saturday. In case you’ve got something to celebrate or you’re in for an appetizing ‘quick bite’, this is definitely the place to be in Haarlem. So hup, put it on your food bucket list! Hope you’ll get the same experience I had and don’t hesitate to share it with me!

Love,

Sharmaine

Restaurant Petossi
Lange Veerstraat 15, Haarlem
Website

*Sharmaine is one of our guest bloggers from the Netherlands with a sweet tooth. The sweeter, the better! She no kitchen princess so she’s always in search for the best hotspots in Amsterdam! You can expect an article from her once a month! Check her out on @sharriefromsandmountains!