Restaurant Greetje, Amsterdam

I found this cute little restaurant by searching “authentic Dutch food.” Surprisingly quiet and vacant, Restaurant Greetje (it’s a throaty hard g followed by a throaty hje, and not easy to pronounce at all) was warm and welcoming—a long wooden bar, uneven and steep wooden stairs to the upper floor, cute little tables draped in white linens and windows opened to the chilly night totally charmed me.

I ordered the potato leek soup, stewed wild boar and poached Conference pear as part of the Greetje’s Fall Menu. To start, some ham and a slab of dense, dark Dutch rye bread with two butters. (Spoiler alert: I ate all of it—including the butters.)

The star of the show was the wild boar: slow-stewed and served with mashed celeriac (yum!), cranberry compote, sautéed Dutch mushrooms and jus gravy.

I’m adding mashed celeriac to my repetoire. It had the texture of silky mashed potatoes, but a faint hint of that distinct celery “heat.” Meat plus mashed starches plus mushrooms is a hearty combination that can’t go wrong, and it made my evening.

The soup and dessert were passable, but not worth the detail.

Everywhere I went in central Amsterdam, the locals were polite and even friendly and warm toward tourists, and these locals (well, not technically locals since they didn’t live in Amsterdam proper) included the staff. They spoke with me in English to ask how the food was, and there was no language barrier whatsoever. Sipping champagne, facing the window to the street, I wondered why there weren’t more tourists.

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