Now my memory is a bit fuzzy on the exact details of the meal we consumed over the next two or so hours. What I remember clearly still is that the appetizer contained of a diminutive quail egg topped with a spot of glistening Beluga caviar, resting on the bed of exotic looking mix of lettuce, and somewhere along the meal, no bigger than a Kennedy silver dollar in diameter and about two inches (5 cm) thick Filet Mignon crowned on the mound of various accoutrement and revolving bottles of champagne all through the meal. All served on shiny white plates, a smaller one nestled into a large service plate. Every course visually enhanced by the chef’s artistic skills.

It was a multi course meal and I am sure there were wine pairings. None of which I remember. But just to give you an idea, I have had my son-in-law Carlo Lamagna, who is currently the executive chef at one of Chicago’s top, Benny’s Steak House and was sous chef  at the elite, known for its  earth to table cuisine, North Pond, frequented by likes of Ricardo Mutti and Gérard Depardieu, make up the following sample menu of that night now thirty years later.

MENU

Amuse – trio of melon with balsamic and basil

1st course – vichyssoise, black truffle, chive baton

2nd course – quail egg, beluga caviar, frisee, garlic vinaigrette

3rd course – foie gras torchon, sauterne Gelee, brioche crouton

4th course – lobster poached in vanilla butter, celeriac puree, wilted spinach, sauce américaine

5th course – petite filet mignon, pomme puree, roasted chantrelles, marchand di vin

intermezzo – beet granite

6th course – vanilla creme brulee, mascerated raspberries

Yum! Or like the Dutch would say: lekker! We are properly wined and dined and are buzzing pleasantly with the champagne circulating through our veins like the chemicals scurrying in slow motion roller-coasters through the test tubes in a science lab, with bubbles and all. The only way I can describe it is: we’re feeling no pain as we say our thanks and goodbyes to the chef and the restaurant.

As we’re driving back in near silence, Dirk’s Alfa Romeo Sports is gliding along the tree covered roads and snaking towards Amsterdam, I hear Ans shuffling in her back seat and leaning forward.

‘So, did you like the meal?’

‘Of course. It was exquisite. Nothing like I have ever tasted before.’ And then I turn my face sideways to look at Dirk. He’s wearing a smile of satisfaction. Then I turn around and face Ans.

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