We were strolling through the New Market area of Amsterdam when we suddenly
felt peckish but no restaurant looked appealing. Some looked a bit dirty and
others seemed to be more "coffee shop" than restaurant. Also the
close proximity to the red light district made walking back towards the station
area to find somewhere to have a decent repast an unattractive option. I then
remembered reading a dining entry by IgoUgo’s resident Dutch guide, Marianne, on De Waag - a restaurant serving organic food where they
assure you that the veal is made of a calf who spent its entire life at the side
of it’s mother! I couldn’t really remember what the exact name of the place
was supposed to be but I hoped to find it once we got to Nieuwmarkt.
I need not have worried about the latter. Once at Nieuwmarkt it is simply
impossible not to find Restaurant Café in de Waag. It is located in a large
fortress like building, which was one of the city gates erected during the
fifteenth century. This imposing building stands on its own in the center of the
large square. Outdoor seating is available but as the weather was rather
unpleasant everyone was inside.
Inside the place is beautifully yet plainly decorated with lots of candles,
dark solid furniture and white washed walls. There are dining areas on several
levels and in several rooms - some reserved for larger private parties.
The menu selection is not particularly large but it is varied with lots of
vegetarian options, as one would expect from an organic food establishment. My
wife had the soup of the day, which was a tasty thick vegetable soup served with
fresh wholesome bread. I thought it would be a shame to pass on those dear
calves and had veal croquets (kalfskroketten) served piping hot with
slices of white bread. They were a bit more expensive than usual but the taste
was worth the splurge. However, I would have preferred a rather more substantial
type bread. The portions were not particularly big so with only a few hours left
in Amsterdam I thought it wise to load up on the bitterballen - very
tasty small meatballs served with strong mustard. Once again the taste was a cut
above the average.
We topped the meal off with two strong cappuccinos and a piece of apple tart
which had that mix of spices that only the Dutch seem to use in apple tart which
is a shame as it is a winning combination. In contrast to the meal this piece of
cake was really big so I made a mental note to arrive here at coffee time on
Adding two more drinks this repast came to Euro 30, which is not exactly
cheap but fair for the location and the quality of the food.