Dear Shaded Viewers,
It was so great to see my friend and fellow Shaded contributor Marcelo last night here in infinitely charming Amsterdam. He took me on a trip back to the XVII century, a Silver Mirror from the Golden Age. This traditional Dutch restaurant has been open since 1614 and was doing that thing that houses tend to do here–lean precariously and alarmingly. But it’s held up for all those centuries, so I’m sure it will last a few more. The experience of this restaurant is absolutely marvelous–thoroughly warm and authentic, right down to the very low door frames which we had to limbo under, because people were tiny in the 17th century.
There is an interesting bit of history on their website, particulary what when on during the Nazi occupation, but it’s a bit difficult to read (it was typed with a feather quill). Perhaps you’ll have better luck than I in reading it…
And here is Marcelo. Of course we started out with champagne! Champagne for real friends, real pain for our sham friends!
The disused wooden staircase came with the house in 1614.
We sat in the old fireplace and I was absolutely mad for the Dutch tiles on the wall. When I get back to NYC I’m covering the wall, floors and ceilings of my apartment with 17th-century Dutch tiles. The plates were rather special here too–they’re English, but obviously taking a cue from Delftware.
As our starter, we both had this marvelous chicken-liver-and-turnips-pate creme brulee, with a slice of chicken thigh with crispy skin. My 17th-century aristocratic gout should be kicking in at any moment. I adore the diseases of the upper classes. (The tiny spoon had a Dutch royal crown on it so it was like eating with a miniature sceptre.)
Dessert was a delight: Elsanta strawberries with toffee mousse and buttermilk rhubarb ice cream.
Thanks for reading.
Tonight it is raining cats and dogs in Amsterdam. I’m going to slip out now to KHL restaurant that’s right here on the docks, in the Port of Amsterdam. It’s supposed to be good but I can’t make heads or tails of the Dutch menu (I see that “dim sum” is an apetizer…Dutch dim sum! I suppose it is my duty to try that.) Tomorrow night I will attend the Amsterdam premiere of the Diana Vreeland film with Marcelo and artist Scott Neary. I am moving to the Conservatorium and need to squeeze in a visit to the Stedelijk Museum (it just re-opened today) and my scheduled aromatherapy massage at the hotel.