Unexpectedly, my wife sent me an e-mail about an opportunity for a relatively ‘cheap’ five-course dinner at &samhoud places, a two Michelin-star restaurant near Amsterdam Central Station. My wife’s friend reserved a table weeks in advance, but couldn’t make it herself and asked us if we would like to take over her reservation for the “Dining with the Stars” week organized by Dinnercity.
Two Michelin stars
We heard many good things about this two Michelin-star restaurant. &samhoud is situated in a new building with large windows and water views. The interior is warm and spacious. On the first level, the dining space is situated and the bar is on the ground floor .
The welcome was friendly. Waiters wear suits in combination with sneakers. This give the place a slightly informal touch, which I appreciated. I don’t like fancy, formal places where you feel uncomfortable and the staff is arrogant. Luckily, that was not the case here.
We had a five-course menu with an amuse of North Sea Crab, a perfectly boiled egg, Mackerel ‘Mangrove style’, North Sea sole with Sea urchin and a creative coffee twist, and duck with red cabbage, a chocolate macaron with goose liver, and potato mash cream. Instead of duck, I had halibut with seafood risotto. We finished with a dessert of coconut flakes, pandan rice ice and passion fruit. All dishes looked creative and interesting. The taste was nice as well.
But in my opinion, it was not enough to be stunning. It was just nice. Besides that, the service is a bit sloppy and we had the same (plain) bread between every course. The wines are good, but they didn’t let us taste before serving, which is a must for any good restaurant. Great and intelligent cooking, but not worth two Michelin-stars. We paid 88 Euros per person, which includes two glasses of wine per person (9 Euro per glass). I heard that normally, you would pay 2-3 times as much for dinner, but I guess (and hope) they serve another kind of menu normally. All in all, we had a nice evening at &samhoud places, and I grade it with a 7 out of 10.