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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Food Photography Background Tutorial + First Vlog

A long time ago, I used to have a tutorial here on how to make a food photography background but I decided to erase it since the quality of the video wasn’t very good. I’ve been wanting to make a proper one since then. So I decided to include it on my first vlog. I thought of  showing you guys a bit more of my daily life, from events to restaurants, to some cooking and traveling. On this one we went zip lining in the Hague, tried some new restaurants and visited the blue forest in Belgium.

So if you would like to see/know anything in particular, do let me know.

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook. For behind the scenes, more of Amsterdam and a peek of press events, you can follow my Instagram stories.

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

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook. For behind the scenes, more of Amsterdam and a peek of press events, you can follow my Instagram stories and my Snapchat: cravingsinams.

 

Taiko – Conservatorium Hotel

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I had heard a lot of good things about Taiko and I had seen many pictures of their very carefully plated dishes passing by on my Instagram, so I was really looking forward to give it a try. Taiko is the Asian-inspired restaurant of the Conservatorium hotel and it is run by Chef Schilo Van Coevorden. My husband and I went there to try their Valentine’s Day lunch. We were welcomed with champagne and oysters served with kimchi, a wonderful way to start our meal. Our first course was an Atlantic lobster, served 3 ways. In sashimi, in a sushi roll with caviar & 24 carat gold, and in a salad. A very fancy and delicate course.

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It was followed by hand dived scallops; wrapped in kataifi pastry, stuffed in a gyoza & served with a kimchi puree, and in siu mai with yuzu foam.

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After that came the black cod; which was marinated for 24 hours in miso and served with a sea salad. A caramelized lovely piece of fish.

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We were really looking forward to their Wagyu beef course and it didn’t disappoint. Thinly sliced and melt in your mouth pieces with BBQ sauce, in a very mild and flavorsome red curry and cooked in a broth and served with black truffles.

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And then it was time for the sweet course. Their rose garden was a dessert fit for the occasion, a white chocolate/raspberry mousse with almond biscuit, yuzu cream and champagne sorbet.

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Next came the dessert that was making everyone else turn to your table as it was brought to you. A chocolate cigar brought to the table covered in a cloche which had been filled with shisha smoke. And for the ladies, an edible ring. A beautifully decorated and bubblegum flavored pâte de fruit.

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Overall it was an exquisitely crafted menu and great dining experience.

 

Taiko, at the Conservatorium hotel

Van Baerlestraat 27, Amsterdam

 

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