Red King Crab, Ingredient of the Year at Taiko

Taiko, the restaurant of the Conservatorium hotel, annually celebrates its birthday by announcing its ingredient of the year. On previous years, Wagyu and wasabi were the stars.

And this year Chef Schilo van Coevorden chose the Red King Crab as the main focus. This particular kind of crab can weight up to 10 kilos. He has been fascinated with crab since the time he worked in Osaka and discovered a restaurant that only served this crustacean. The crab that he serves is sourced from a village in Norway and it is flown in to Amsterdam. Handled with extreme care, you can really taste the freshness of this ingredient. So much that you can eat it raw in sashimi. The meat is sweet and juicy, a real treat for the palate.

I had the pleasure to be there at the launch of the new menu and it was incredible. If you follow my Instagram stories you probably already saw some of the dishes. The first two courses came with an extra sensory experience. We were given a glass to smell as we took a bite of the dish. The first one smelled of lychee, and was paired with the king crab, roses, elder-flower and berries dish. Some of my favorite dishes were the cappuccino with young coconut and peanuts. One of Schilo’s specialties. The king crab tartare with green curry ice cream. The Thai flavors here were amazing. The crab gyoza with tamarind and kimchi. The smoked crab nigiri which came with a very generous piece of crab. The veal cheeks with BBQ crab legs. The veal just melted in your mouth. And of course, I couldn’t leave out the matcha dessert. The home of the crab, was a work of art.

 

You can enjoy a special 12 course kind crab menu until September 2018.

Taiko, at the Conservatorium hotel

Van Baerlestraat 27, Amsterdam

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Xmas Lunch at the Conservatorium Hotel

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I can’t believe how fast this year has passed by. With Christmas just around the corner, lots of restaurants already have their holiday menus planned. A great alternative if you want to skip on the cooking. As much as I enjoy the whole cooking process, sometimes it’s nice to let others do it and just enjoy the meal and the company.

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Today I had a Xmas lunch at the Conservatorium Hotel. Our table was beautifully decorated and with live singing, it was impossible not to get into the holiday spirit. We started with the Hamachi sashimi with caviar, beef tartar with nashi pear, Alaskan king crab with avocado & blood orange, and a wild carrot tartar with ash & chardonnay vinaigrette. This was all to share. The first two were my favorite. I love a good steak tartare and the combination with pear was just delicious. And the Hamachi, well I ended up eating a bit of my neighbor’s as well.

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Then we had a cappuccino of roasted celeriac with white truffle. The soup was very airy and full of flavor with a surprise of citrusy mushrooms in the bottom. For a more traditional touch, the main course was composed of very tender and juicy beef Wellington with structures of mushrooms, Bordelaise sauce, mashed potatoes, poached pears and chestnuts in salted caramel sauce.

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fullsizerender-2And since there is no ending without something sweet, we had the winter wonderland dessert and some gingerbread men. I really enjoy Schilo Van Coevorden’s cooking. I’ve been coming here since early this year and it never disappoints.

The Conservatorium Hotel

Van Baerlestraat 27 , Amsterdam

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Tunes Bar (Conservatorium Hotel)

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This has been a very exciting week for us. On Wednesday, we got the keys to the apartment we bought and yesterday we finalized the papers for the remodeling we are going to do. Today we had a bit more time to ourselves and that meant, finally time to celebrate.

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We went out for lunch and cocktails at the Tunes Bar. It is known for its Asian tapas, sushi and Gin tonics. I’ve come to this hotel to eat a few times already, and the food has always been great. So I am always looking forward to coming back and trying new items from their menus.

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We started with the edamame with an aji amarillo dip which I love, and 2 gin & tonics. One Gin Mare with Indian tonic, basil and orange. And the other one was with Geranium dry gin, elderflower tonic and edible flowers. A great way to start the weekend!

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We also ordered the daikon roll salad. Veggie rolls served over a wild ginger sauce. So light, crunchy and delicate. Then we got the tuna tataki and the soft shell crab roll. We pretty much inhaled them, they were so delicious!

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For our final round, we ordered the tuna sashimi, Scottish salmon nigiri and the salmon avocado roll. All the Asian tapas here are served with freshly grated wasabi which has the heat without the harshness.

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If you are looking to have some drinks in Amsterdam and you like sushi and Asian dishes, this is the place to go. It doesn’t hurt that the service is always impeccable.

Tunes Bar at the Conservatorium Hotel

Van Baerlestraat 27, Amsterdam

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook. For behind the scenes and more of Amsterdam, you can follow me on Snapchat: cravingsinams.