We are foodies. We spend our money wining and dining. Upon having moved to Amsterdam, we realized the quality of food here is much of a let down. One really have to spend a great deal to be on the receiving end of a good dinner service. That of course includes the service and food. Lets just leave out the service for now, good food is rare in this country. They have got beautiful produce yet the food culture is a shame. We do not tend to go out a lot due to the disappointment. It can really ruin our weekend. Hence our decision to include posts on food reviews. We never quite trust food review sites because these people could be paying others to write reviews. We always try to read reviews from blogs, but then again, there aren't too many.

When we moved here, Mr Washy brought us to Halvemaan, meaning 'Half Moon' in Dutch. It is walking distance from where we stay and hence it seemed like a good idea to walk since we were planning to have a wine pairing session.

We are firm believers of ordering from the degustation menu in a restaurant. That is the way to sample the best dishes in the restaurant as the degustation menus are usually the way chefs tend to show off. It is a whole dining experience they are trying to sell with the degustation menus.

We went there for our anniversary, all dressed up. The staff was good. They really, actually waited on you. We are sure you have experienced going to restaurants where you are always waving frantically to catch someone's attention to fill your glass. This place is not like that. We can even claim their service is better than those Michelin restaurants we have been to. The waitress was attentive, she waited for us to finish talking before she came to us for orders. she waited for both of us to put down our cutlery before she came to clear the plates. We won't say she was 'watching' us because that would be freaky. The service staff was completely aware of their surroundings and was constantly checking. 

Upon being seated, we were asked if we would like to have a glass of champagne each. We thought it would be fitting for the occasion and hence went ahead with it. The only shock was that it was 25euros a glass. Mr Washy was gracious enough with it, we were not. 50euros was the price of the degustation menu to begin with. We could have brought someone else and spent the same amount, minus the 2 glasses of champagne.

The whole evening proceeded flawlessly. The food was amazing and most importantly unpretentious. We specially despise restaurants with minute servings and leaving us only starving when we get home. Halvemaan was generous with their portions. They started with an amuse bouche, followed by 2 other appetizers of good sizes, and the main course of an extremely moist chicken thigh in cray fish jus which was surprisingly divine. There was a dessert as add-on if you liked. The wine pairing was good. Our only complaint would be that most of the wines seemed to be on the sweet side.

It was in all a wonderful experience if not for the champagne. We had that degustation menu as they were celebrating their Jubilee. We wanted to go there again for the menu but they have unfortunately ended their Jubilee degustation menus. They still offer the same dishes in full portions in the Ala Carte menu which we find to be pricey and possibly on par with the other better restaurants in the city.

We would go back to the restaurant if their degustation menu comes up again, but very unlikely for their highly priced Ala Carte items. We would avoid the champagne too.

Van Leijenberghlaan 320 - 1082 DD Amsterdam - 020-6440348 -
Free phone in Nederland: 0800-0224477

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