PuiCk ~ Around the world food in Breda

PuiCk is a small and hip restaurant in Breda which will surprise you with their food.

About half a year ago I went there with Lazy Penguin and Lazy Sloth. I was attracted to the place, because it had swings behind the window and it looked quite cozy with all the plants.

Inside we found a vintage store with all different kinds of chairs, tables and lamps.

Against the walls is a cabinet with all kinds of different food in nice design packages. Everything is for sell, even the chairs, tables and lamps.

Menu & Food

On the menu there were a lot of foreign dishes. I was craving for some noodles, so I ordered the fried noodles. The other two buddies ordered a shared plate with bread and toppings. Too be honest, I didn’t expect much, because often when I eat Asian food at a non-Asian place, it is okay food. But THIS! This was exceptionally good! The right balance of sauce, sweetness, saltiness. And the toppings of Penguin and Sloth were so tasty! Chicken something, salmon, pulled pork, eggplant and a olive oil spread. It was awesome. (I have to apologize for the vague memories, but soon I will visit PuiCk again for fresh memories :))

Stir fried Indonesian noodles

Shared platter

By now they have a new menu. They serve soups, pita bread filled with deliciousness, fresh spring rolls, Lebanese flatbread, salads and more lunch dishes. I really have to go back and try out the new menu.

Insects

What I also find special, they serve insects on the menu. You could pick for the special shared plate with worms and grasshopper. When I paid for the meal at the desk, you could also try a worm instead of a mint. It tasted hollow and starchy; needs a bit more salt 😛

Visit them!

PuiCk
Veemarktstraat 56, 4811 ZJ Breda
+31 (0) 76 514 3755
puick.nl

Mon                Closed
Tue-Sat           11.00 – 17.00
Sun                 13.00 – 16.00

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Äpelschlaat – potato specialties in Düsseldorf

Our visit

It was an early Thursday in Düsseldorf, (11:00am) and the Vietnamese restaurant we wanted to visit was not open yet (it opened at 12:00am).

There are a lot of Pacman ghosts in Düsseldorf

In the search for a good brunch place we found Äpelschlaat, a place which looked hip and organic from the outside.

Inside, the interior had a farm feeling: wooden tables, hay decoration, light green tones and a rough brick wall. They also have an open counter / kitchen area where they prepare the food. Yes, this place looks promising, we will brunch here!

Since Lazy Pingu and I still wanted to lunch after the brunch we ordered 1 potato chicken dish and 1 small salad. We also ordered a homemade elderflower lemonade, made by themselves. When the food came, it looked so colorful!

The potato was warm, chunky, savory and delicious. A bite with shredded chicken, some greens, nuts and the red sauce was yummy! It was served with a big dot of sour cream at the side, but I preferred it without. Although my need to create a perfect bite, made me keep putting sour cream on the potato. ¯_(ツ)_/¯
The salad was simple; fresh veggies and quinoa with a sour dressing.

Menu and price

Click on the menu to see the other side on their website. The prices range from 6-8 euro per potato dish and they offer vegetarian and vegan food. The amount you get for 1 potato dish can be shared by two people.

photo from aepelschlaat.de

History

One of the owners, Carsten Reiners, told us that he wanted to introduce the potato more to the people, since meat plays a big role in German dishes, he wants to bring the potato more into the spotlight. An ingredient which often goes together with the meat dishes.

On the menu there are different combinations of potato with meat or grilled vegetables and other toppings. The name Äpelschlaat is Dusseldorf dialect, which means potato salad, if I understood correctly from the owner. Normally “kartoffel salat” means potato salad in German.

All the ingredients which they use are from farmers and suppliers in the region. There is a wall with all the people who are responsible for the ingredients. Also the grandmother helps making the cake!

It was a lovely visit. If you are ever in the neighborhood, visit them!

Visit them!

Äpelschlaat
Friedrichstraat 120
40217 Düsseldorf, Germany
T: +49.211 171 22 399

www.aepelschlaat.de

Mon-Sat                11:00-20:00
Sun & holidays      closed

Japanese food in Düsseldorf

I took a week off from work and went to Düsseldorf with Lazy Penguin to eat good food. Food trip! Today we ate a lot of Japanese food.

Takumi

We had to try the original Takumi. Review: they have better ramen broths than in Rotterdam. They had a pork bone soup, so tasty! And my miso ramen was also well-seasoned, not too salty. The amount of noodles was also good, a bit less than other places, just enough for me. Side dishes were so so here, good, but Rotterdam’s were more “wow”. (I will update this post later with more photos from my big camera)
Takumi rating: 7.5/10

Yaki-The-Emon

In the evening we went to Yaki-The-Emon, suggested by a friend of Lazy Penguin. This was a drinking/side dishes/yakitori (food on a stick) restaurant. We were still quite full from the lunch, so choosing small dishes was a better idea than a big meal.

Yaki really surprised us, every dish was really ‘new’ to us. Interesting tastes and textures. A ceasar salad grilled on the grill, a grilled eggplant with miso sauce, salmon sashimi, okra wrapped in beef, and beef stew with root veggies 🌈. Mmm. The interior design was in the style of a drinking/eating place in Japan. Really nice atmosphere. 🙂 The waiters at both places were very friendly.

Yaki rating: 8,5/10
We might go back to Yaki to try more dishes.

We saw some other cuisines we want to try: Vietnamese food, Korean BBQ and Korean shaved ice. Yes, that is mainly Asian food.

Zwart Breda – Eating in the dark

No light or pretty food. Everything is dark. Only sound, smell, touch and taste can be used. Recently I went to Zwart Breda, a restaurant where you will eat in the dark. The waiters are blind or have bad eye sight.

It’s really an interesting experience, because your visual experience is now replaced with sounds and imaginations of what those sound could be. Funny though, I usually think in pictures, but now I actually shouldn’t have any pictures of the event in my head, because I never saw anything. When I think back, I can see how our table was decorated (quite empty though :P) and a rough idea of how the other tables were placed next to our table. Also how my friends were sitting across of me and next to me.

It’s dark though. Smiling is useless, you can only communicate with your voice. Talking to keep it fun. No enjoyment of the sun coming into the restaurant. No. Pitch black in a small room.

I am skipping the exact details about the food and process, because I think it’s more fun to experience it yourself. Messing with your food without anyone seeing it. Or to sleep. Nobody knows…

Visit them!

Zwart Breda
Haven 5 , 4811 WK, Breda
+31 (0)76 700 23 50

www.zwartbreda.nl/

Sun-Tue      Closed
Wed-Sat     18:00-23:00

Five Restaurants in February

A quick post for this week, since I don’t have a lot time to work on a big post. Looking back at the restaurants I have visited in February I concluded that there are quite some places I recommend. They have the food, which you will go back for. Sorry to the restaurants I didn’t post about, you were nice, but… it’s not you, it’s me.

Fika – Nijmegen

FIKAnijmegen

A Scandinavian lunch/brunch place. I heard from people that Scandinavian food is about quality and damn these sandwiches where good! Fresh ingredients, delicious smörrebröd and okay drinks. The tastes are quite strong, which I like. Next time I have to try the other sandwiches.

Visit them

Van Broeckhuysenstraat 5, Nijmegen
www.fika-nijmegen.nl
Open every day 10:00-20:00

The Black Fox – Nijmegen 

theblackfox nijmegen

This is a butcher / meat workshop / restaurant. They get there cows from milk farms, so the cows were milk producing cows before. So the meat is a bit tougher than massaged cows. Lazy Pinguin and I got a Tomahawk steak. Really good. Their interior and graphic design of the menu is really well designed. I might write a full post for them, only my food pictures are a bit blurry. So I need to go back to make better ones 😛 They served a little gem salad with Sriracha and onion compote which was soooo good! Spicy, sweet, crunchy.. one dish just was not enough.

By the way, Lazy Pinguin is mastering the art of sous vide. Sous vide is putting ingredients in a plastic bag, putting the plastic bag in water and cook for a while. Meat and fish that comes out of this bag is sooo soft and juicy (after a quick burn in the pan). My steak expectations have skyrocketed since, no steak in a restaurant can beat the sous vide steak. Maybe the Kobe beef in Japan. This Tomahawk steak was quite good for a restaurant, but compared to sous vide steak, no.

Visit them

Kelfkensbos 32, Nijmegen
www.theblackfox.nl
Mon-Fri            17:00-01:00
Sat-Sun             12:00-01:00

La Tasca – Delft

dessert la Tasca delft

There a two kind of restaurant which I assume are good for going back: authentic food (reminds me of the good old food) and new food experiences (things I have never ate/experienced before). La Tasca is a restaurant for new food experiences. They offer a fixed surprise menu every period of time. The chef will pick the seasonal ingredients of that time and create dishes with it. The taste, textures and ingredients are always surprising. This was my second visit and I was still very pleased with all the tastes and experiences. The pasta was really good this time (also the first time).  Oh no wonder, they are an Italian restaurant with influences of Spain and France.

Visit them

Voldersgracht 13, Delft
latasca.nl
Mon-Sat 18:00-22:00

Kiroren Restaurant – Rotterdam

big chicken plate kiroren

Went for a second time to Kiroren Restaurant to taste that authentic Xinjiang food. We tried the chicken we didn’t have last time, with the secret powder recipe, but we were not so impressed. The big chicken dish with pulled flat noodles is still our favorite chicken. The owner told us that they had revised the big chicken dish, to let it taste more like the authentic one in China. But honestly, we liked their first version better. That was really an explosion of taste in your mouth. This new revised recipe was a bit softer, still good none the less, but we had tasted something nicer before to compare it with. I will update my old Kiroren post with the new photos and experiences. I will do that over the weekend.

Visit them

Schiedamsedijk 1, Rotterdam
Facebook
Mon – Thur, Sun             12:00-22:00
Fri – Sat                          12:00-23:00

Roast Chicken Bar – Delft

roast chicken bar delft

I like restaurants which specialize in something. This one only has roasted chicken; marinated perfectly, crispy skin, darn good pulled chicken over fries, tomato chutney and apple compote. Good food, trendy and hip interior, huge kitchen to look in. I visited this place today, so it’s still fresh in my mind/mouth. They only started 13 weeks ago, but already had quite some customers on a stormy evening. They also offer breakfast and lunch stuff from 10:00 from The Egg Store. That’s also a brand in the same restaurant. Interesting… eggs and chicken.

Visit them

Voldersgracht 12
www.roastchickenbar.com
Mon-Sun           12:00-23:00 (Roast Chicken Bar)
Tue-Fri, Sunday  10:00-17:00 (Egg store)
Mon           12:00-17:00 (Egg store)
Saturday  9:00-17:00 (Egg store)

 

That was not a quick post at all. Well… enjoy all the places! See you guys in the weekend. ^_^

Good and bad things of a restaurant

I have developed the habit of analyzing the restaurant I am visiting. Not sure if that is such a good habit, since I am not very sociable then: observing the room and looking, smelling, thinking about stuff and making photos of the interior.

Over time I have collected a list of things I think are good (designed) and things which can have some improvements. Today’s post will be about the:

“Good and bad things of a restaurant”

I am thinking of creating a big list, so people can use it to create an awesome restaurant experience. I will explain some points with a story and maybe some photos. This “Good and bad things of a restaurant” is a work in progress. At the moment I don’t really have an idea in what kind of format I can bring this. So I will just do something and go with flow.

GOOD THINGS 🙂

~ Privacy behind plants ~

dekurkdelft

De Kurk in Delft

When you are on a romantic date it’s nice to have some privacy. In this restaurant (De Kurk – Delft) they have big plants to hide behind.

~ Good lighting ~

For atmosphere & taking photos

foodpornphotoshoot

As a foodblogger I am also one of those annoying persons who have to make millions of photos of all the food, before the rest can eat. But what annoys me is that the light is often dimmed in the evening. Okay, it’s romantic.. but I want to see my pretty food when I eat it. So give me light! (and also to make better lighted food porn photos :D)

Tips from pros: bring your food dish to a window or more in the sun, so you have natural good light. But that’s only during the day.

I was thinking that there should be a restaurant specially dedicated to those food porn lovers. Every table has their own studio area: moveable lights, nice decorations, camera stand… I discussed this idea with some colleagues and one person doesn’t like these food photographers at all. So for the allergic people we have a special area without all the studio stuff.

~ Black walls ~

umamibyhanehv

Umami by Han in Eindhoven

In the restaurant Umami by Han in Eindhoven they have painted the walls in the wardrobe area black. It fitted the restaurant interior (which is lovely), but I thought it was also a subtle way to hide the jackets. They also have the good service of taking your jacket and hanging it for you.

~ Graphic design ~

The Black Fox in Nijmegen

The Black Fox in Nijmegen

Personally I enjoy menus, logo’s and interior graphics which are designed well. That means someone has thought about them. It’s a shame that some menus have pictures from the internet which are pixelated. Bad looking menus doesn’t mean the food is not good, but it’s nice to get a good feeling about every aspect in a restaurant.

The menu is an very important part of the restaurant experience. It is usually the first thing people will look at. If it is not understandable you have already lost your first impression. In the future I will dedicate a post about menus.

BAD THINGS 😦

~ Crackling floor ~

earthquaketable

I have been to a few places that had (loose) wooden floors, which crack when people walk over it. You can feel the shockwaves of their steps. It is like a mini earthquake while eating.

~ Smoke ghost ~

stinkysmoke

I was so disappointed when I was having a nice dinner at a restaurant and a smoker came inside after smoking. All the smoke from outside came into the restaurant. What is the point of smoking outside then?! The restaurant should have thought of a way to prevent this. Double doors or a curtain at the entrance. Or better smoking facilities outside.

That is the list for now. In the future when I encounter more good/bad things, I will post something new or update this one.

Have a good weekend!handtekening