This week’s post features Haarlem’s restaurant Vis en Ko. The restaurant can best be described as a seafood restaurant, serving you the freshest seafood from Dutch waters (or so they claim). We booked a table last weekend during Restaurantweek and were served a splendid menu of what the restaurant has to offer. Here’s what we had.
Salmon lightly seared in Tandoori spices, served with basmati rice and sweet and pickled vegetables, a lemon yoghurt and a spiced crisp. This was our first introduction to chef Jacco Calf’s kitchen and one of my personal favourites. What a bold move to sear salmon in Indian spices – it was absolutely delicious. The wine paired by our wine steward was a 2013 Weingut Winter Riesling from Rheinhessen, Germany, the perfect wine to highlight this light and spiced dish.
Brill with a watercress crust, beets, a celeriac puree, tempura of smoked eel and a light Dijon sauce. Presentation-wise, this could have been better. It felt like we had these four components put on the plate randomly. I loved the puree, red beet and smoked eel tempura, the watercress brill couldn’t have been more pronounced. I did think all together the components were well-balanced. Wine paired: a 2013 Domaine des Cantarelles, Costieres de Nimes, from Rhone, France.
Steamed Atlantic cod with a dim sum-style fried shrimp toast with sesame, Chinese cabbage, soy beans, shiitake mushrooms and a Dashi and shiitake stock. Served with a daikon dumpling on top. This combination felt familiar. We’ve had a similar dish before at Nobu among others. The saltiness from a dashi and shiitake stock works well with white, meaty fish. I couldn’t complain on this one. It was simple, clean – just lovely. Wine paired: a 2012 Clos des Fous Chardonnay, Terroir de les Andes, Chili.
Poached pear with a pecan cake, topped with a cream of caramel, a dollop of pear cream and hazelnut ice cream. Plated beautifully on the cake side; could have used a little more edit on the other components. The cake was gorgeous combined with the caramel cream. Wine paired: a 2004 Moscatel do Douro Reserva, from Douro, Portugal.
A range of cheeses. Wine paired: a 2009 Quinta do Portal, LBV Port, from Douro, Portugal.