I first attended Food Festival Amsterdam during its previous event back in November, whilst nursing a chronic hangover; the effects of which did not allow me to fully appreciate its true wonders. In short, I was not able to gorge myself into the gluttonous stupor I would have liked.
Round two was a different tale altogether. After an active Saturday, adopting the role of a two-wheeled-tour-guide showing my parents the marvels of Amsterdam Centrum by bike, we felt we should replenish the valuable calories we lost and sample (/stuff our faces with) the wares of some of the Netherlands’ best food trucks.
On arrival, we purchased our ‘munten’ (or, tokens), the minimum number of which you can purchase is five – equating to €13.50. The food on offer around the festival typically ranges from 2 to 3 tokens (€5-8) and this, depending on what you order of course, ends up generally being a pretty good deal. Be warned though, as this monopoly-money-esque new currency can deceive you like a sly fox, and you may find yourself struggling to work out whether the 3 munten burger you are deliberating over is good value or not. If, like me, it took you six months to finally convert your money-brain from British Sterling (or other) to Euros, the introduction of this pseudo-currency may throw everything off balance. Keep your wits about you and be ready to use your school-level maths.
Having purchased our munten, we undertook the obligatory ‘turn about the room’, like a set of high-born Victorian women at a ball, to get our bearings and scout out what was on offer. Off the top of my head I can recall the following genres from my initial coy wander:
- Moroccan cuisine
- Japanese-Peruvian fusion
- Indian street food
- Sate skewers
- Cocktail and Gin bars
- Vietnamese cuisine
- Pasta and Bruschetta
- Bugs in food-form
- Fried chicken
- Smoothies and juices
- Spanish tapas and Paella
- Donuts and Coffee
- A variety of burgers and hot dogs
The first thing to catch my roaming eye was PachaMama On Wheels. Drawn in by the promise of Japanese-Peruvian fusion (aka Nikkei cuisine), I opted for the Sake Uramaki, a plate of five sushi rolls (salmon, cucumber, avocado, huicaina sauce, and sweet potato) but also stole a bite of my dad’s Pan Con Chicharron (a crusty bun filled with pork, sweet potato, onion salsa and a generous helping of salad). Both were delicious and the balance of Japanese and Peruvian flavours was well considered. After getting my taste buds tingling, I moved onto M.I.L.F’s Baja California fresh and zesty ceviche, followed by Dos Chica’s beef burrito and rounded off with a lone oyster costing just one munt.
Food Festival Amsterdam is a veritable feast for the senses and gives its visitors the opportunity to circumnavigate the globe, sampling delectable new flavours from around the world, all under one gezellig roof. What’s more, the atmosphere is bustling with live music and cooking demonstrations spanning the duration of the five-day festival. It’s the perfect place to wile away an afternoon or evening in a group, gather around a big table, and pick at the range of captivating creations available to suit each and every taste.
Although Food Festival Amsterdam’s Easter Event has finished, keep an eye out on the website or Facebook to find out when the festival will next grace us with its presence at Europaplein. I myself will certainly be back for round three.