More than ever the identity of cities are being defined by their gastronomy and by the creativity of their chefs.
Amsterdam has been put well and truly on the culinary map by the Dutch chef Schilo van Coevorden. One of the most celebrated chefs in the Netherlands, Schilo has a distinctly international background that inspires his cuisine.
Renowned for inventive use of exceptionally fresh ingredients, the restaurants at The Conservatorium Hotel, by Executive Chef Schilo, are a requisite for any visit to the capital.
(The stunning installation in the lobby of the hotel a creative reference to its past)
The über-lux ‘Conservatorium Hotel’, once conservatory of music, provides a historic setting with plenty of contemporary styling that perfectly complements Schilo’s restaurants – The Brassarie, the Tunes Bar and the Taiko restaurant’s contemporary design and gastronomy.
(Andrew Forbes with Schilo van Coevorden at The Conservatorium Hotel, in Amsterdam)
Each eaterie in the hotel, is a showcase for Schilo’s team’s exceptional attention to detail and masterful combination of flavours and textures.
Schilo’s new project has just opened, Taiko, celebrating all things Asian. Schilo has wowed guests with his Asian-inspired tapas in the Tunes Bar and now this has in turn been inspiration for his new signature restaurant Taiko.
This year I’ve eaten twice in The Conservatorium and below I give a visual flavour of an early summer lunch – full of Mediterranean light, colour and warmth.
(Smoked and fresh mozzarella , with olive oil ‘caviar’, mustard ice-cream, white onion, passion fruit coulis, and shavings of yellow carrot – paired with a French Chablis)
(Delicious premium olive oil from Andalucia and exceptional Dutch butter were served with the bread – when we were seated and offered a glass of cava, a small dish of sweet roasted ‘nueces’ were put on the table.)
(Fresh crab ‘capuccino’ qith tomato and seaweed – paired with a glass of Chilean Sauvignon Blanc)
(Rack of lamb with mint, and neck of lamb, sweetbreads, and an onion tart, a combination of sweet, sharp and buttery – paired with a Catalan Trepat red, matured in clay casks)
(Desert course – strawberries, fresh, freezed dried, bavara and with sorbet and coulis with a touch of chocolate – paired with ‘summer in a glass’ Moscato d’Asti)
Schilo’s culinary journey has included time at notable Dutch, German and British Michelin-starred restaurants, significant success with his own restaurant ventures in the Middle East and Asia, and three years with a signature restaurant in Andalucia. His fresh, sunshine-filled Mediterranean and Asian inspired creations are prepared with local and European ingredients and paired with wines from the restaurant’s superb list.
Lunch, Brunch, Afternoon Tea or Dinner at The Conservatorium is an experience, an occasion that will become a lasting memory of any visit to Amsterdam.
(I was first introduced to Schilo’s gastronomic style and quality at his signature restaurant in Southern Spain, at the 5 star Finca Cortesin Hotel – you can read see my post here.)
(The stunning table setting)
When I was last in Amsterdam, the Hotel Conservatorium hosted a lunch to mark the annual ‘Open Gardens’ – when the hidden, secret gardens of the UNESCO canal quarter are opened to the public. A feast visually as well as gastronomically!
(‘Laura Ashley’ Lobster)
(For more information, see my Insider Guide to Amsterdam here)
I was hosted by the city of Amsterdam and its partners but this has not influenced by piece. Please bear in mind that this site and my articles are intended as entertainment only and not a definitive resource for purchasing decisions. Before making any travel or purchasing decision I recommend that you seek as much information as possible from various sources including review sites, guide books and other blogs. If you act based on my writing you do so at your own risk. If you wish to add anything to this piece, simply comment using the WordPress or Facebook plug-in.