Crazy about fries!
Remember my blog post about the beautiful railway station of Antwerpen? Visiting the station was part of a day trip to that city, together with my father and brother.
My mother passed away shortly before the 62nd wedding anniversary of my parents, so my brother and I decided to take my father to Antwerpen on that difficult day. We wanted to divert him from his sadness and give him the best day possible.
Knowing how much I loooooove french fries, my brother brought us to the much hyped Frites Atelier by one of Holland’s best and most succesfull chefs: Sergio Herman.
Frites Atelier by Sergio Herman
I heard and read about it, but never had the pleasure of trying out Sergio’s fries for myself. So I thought it was a great idea from my brother.
Sergio Herman opened Frites Atelier with a simple and clear concept: high quality fries, with sauces and other add-ons of equally high quality. For the rest: no frills, no fuss.
There are 4 Frites Ateliers now. Three in the Netherlands and one in Belgium, the one in Antwerpen.
Frites Atelier Antwerpen
Frites Atelier Antwerpen turned out to be as small as it was popular. And that’s what kinda turned me off.
Meaning: yes, the fries were good. Sure. But in general I don’t like to eat and drink in uncomfortable or not cosy positions and surroundings. I have said it before and I will say it again: for me, what I eat and drink is one thing, but where I eat it, is as important for me.
I prefer to be seated in a comfy chair. Nice music at an acceptable volume, or no music at all. A pretty, quirky or cool interior design is a plus. As is a great view. A bit of personal space around me is pleasant. As is friendly staff.
Comfort food in a comfy seat please
In the Netherlands and Belgium we have an old tradition of buying our fries from a mobile kitchen on the street, where the fries are wrapped in a triangular paper bag.
It’s literally fast food, food that you eat standing up or walking.
I never liked that, eating my fries while walking or standing.
Fries are SUCH comfort food for me, that I want to enjoy them in a completely comfy and relaxed state. Slowly. Savouring them one by one. Taking my time. Satisfaction to the max.
So for that reason Frites Atelier is not for me, despite of the good fries. But don’t let that hold you back!
Great ambiance, horrible fries
The opposite is not good either; being in a lovely decor but being served the worst fries ever. This happened to me in Jansz, the restaurant that’s part of Pullitzer hotel Amsterdam.
I guess it just wasn’t our day, because it seemed like everything went wrong during that late lunch.
As far as the fries were concerned: it took forever before we got them, which was really weird. And when we did, they were 1. luke-warm at most, 2. old (fried multiple times), 3. doused in yuk spices and herbs (who does that??? Listen to me, dear chefs. Fries are best served with sea salt, nothing else. And good quality mayonaise. That’s it.), 4. ugly. We complained, gave them back and received other fries after again a long time, which were not much better, but at least they were warm.
As far as our dad is concerned, I think our mission that day was a success. He was (and is) still sad, but it surely took his mind of his sorrows and he enjoyed what we did and saw.
Which food is your Achilles heel?