Having concluded the free walking tour of Amsterdam, next up on our itinerary was a canal cruise of Amsterdam.
From the end point of the tour we made our way back towards Dam Square which was near where the boat was to depart from. The above flag was a common sight in Amsterdam as it is the city’s official flag. We were told of its history during the tour and we processed a lot of historical information, so it was time to unwind with a nice and relaxing canal cruise.
The cruise covered the major canals in Amsterdam and lasted for an hour. Brief commentary was given in several languages along the way. It was nice to just sit down and take in the sights of picturesque Amsterdam from the canals – definitely a different experience than being on foot.
Only on the cruise could we have gotten a view such as this. The building on the right is a pagoda-style floating Chinese restaurant called the Sea Palace which is the first floating restaurant in Europe. The Sint Nicolaaskerk (Church of St. Nicholas) can be observed in the background on the left.
After the cruise, we got hungry and so we decided to go for dinner. Dinner for that day was at the Kantjil & de Tijger – an Indonesian restaurant recommended by our tour guide from the walking tour earlier.
There was a separate takeaway section beside the restaurant. We mistakenly entered from the takeaway door, but it was connected to the actual restaurant anyway. We caught a glimpse of the takeaway display and it seemed sort of like a mixed-rice/noodles concept. It looked really good.
The restaurant was big, so big that we couldn’t snap a picture showing it all because of the different sections. The décor gave off a pleasant Indonesian vibe. Though it must be said that the tables were rather close together for the section we sat in.
For drinks, we had water (left) and a Home Made Ice Tea (right). The iced tea was priced at €3.90. It had a distinct lemongrass taste and was pleasingly sweet. We’ve never had anything like it before and we liked it a lot.
We heard good things about the Rijsttafel here, so we ordered a Kantjil Rijsttafel for €52.50. A rijsttafel is a selection of various specialities, served in small bowls and platters. Included in the Kantjil Rijsttafel were:
1. Kredok (top, left) – salad of cabbage, Indonesian pumpkin, corn and catjang peas with a cold fresh peanut dressing and Emping (vegetarian crackers of belindjo nuts);
2. Kroepoek (top, right) – prawn crackers;
3. Seroendeng (right most) – grated and roasted coconut with peanuts;
4. Sambal Goreng Telor (bottom, second from right) – two half eggs in a spicy coconut sauce;
5. Sambal Goreng Kentang (bottom, third from right) – sweet fried potato chips dipped in Javanese palmsugar syrup and sambal;
6. Sajoerian Harian (bottom, left) – assorted vegetables;
7. Daging Roedjak (middle, left) – beef in a spicy coconut sambal sauce; and
8. Sajoer Lodeh (centre) – cabbage, carrot and green beans in a coconut stock.
We particularly enjoyed the Kredok which was somewhat of a salad with cold satay peanut sauce – a combination that you could not go wrong with! The Sambal Goreng Kentang was good as well with its sweet taste and a slight hint of spiciness. Special mention also goes out to the Daging Roedjak which I thought was really good. The beef was tender and the sauce was flavourful.
Lastly, the set came with Pepesan Oedang (front, spicy shrimps wrapped and steamed in a banana leaf) and Nasi Poeteh (back, steamed white rice). The taste can be described as similar to a local Malaysian favourite – otak-otak. The texture of the dish was light and smooth. It had a strong spice taste that did not mask the taste of the prawns. This dish was also very good.
We were very happy with the restaurant and we were glad to have tried Indonesian food in the Netherlands. From our time in Amsterdam, we found out that the Dutch actually enjoy proper Indonesian food (since Indonesia was once a Dutch colony) and not localised versions of Indonesian dishes. The acceptance and integration of unblemished Indonesian food and culture all the way in the capital of the Netherlands had given us a newfound respect for the Dutch. For more information, do check out the restaurant’s website. Stay tuned for our dessert on that night!
1012 VS Amsterdam
Tel: 020 – 6200994