de Pauw, Groningen, Netherlands

Last friday, my little sister got her MA in psychology, and we (my parents, brothers, our girls and my sister with two friends) celebrated with a dinner party in restaurant de Pauw. For my brother’s master we had been there too (about 12 years ago?), and I remembered it as a (very) good restaurant, so I looked forward to this dinner. Since we were 11 persons, we got a fixed 5-course menu, all the better, since all the decisions had been made for us. We started with a starter (yes, really), consisting of variations with chicken. Oh, I completely forgot, of course the real start was the amuse, a home-made saucijzenbroodje (!) with apple, really nice! freshly made, and wow, well, it was just one bite of course, but I could have eaten much more of it. lekker. Then after this indeed, variations of chicken:

well-made, nice, nothing spectacular, but good food. The same held for the soup, a -as they called it- bouillabaisse of tomato (which is just a fancy way of saying: tomato soup) with ith quenelle of whiting and rouille with basil and anchovy. This was extremely nice. The soup was very tasty, very tomatoey, the quenelle was really good, nice texture, nice flavour and good combination with the soup:

The next dish was not my piece of cake, it was mackerel, with a salsa of green and red peppers, a couscous and home made ketchup. well, what can I say. First: messy dish, what are these things doing together on one plate? What’s with the couscous? I did not like the mackerel at all, it had a strange acidity, and gave me a strange tickling feeling in the mouth. The salsa and ketchup however were really good, but would have combined better with, well, yes, a burger or so :-).

The main main course was indeed nices, Lamb ribs and lamb ham, with mashed purple potatoes (with truffle oil, nice!) on 2 asparagus and with 7 peas. The meat was very very well done, it was quite raw, but clearly good quality, the tast was great.

the dinner ended with a grand desert, with 6 small desserts, from the trolley menue. It included some strawberry like icecream, a mouse, a caramel thingy, something with tonka beans and something with yoghurt and vanilla. All in all ok, quite sweet, but something nice for everyone, I think. (all in all this is, although portions are tiny) quite a huge dessert by the way).

So? My opinion in general? This is a good restaurant, service is very kind and good, food is mostly good to very good, wines were good too. However, I wouldn’t go here for every occasion. It is a little stiff, i don’t really like the interior (although it is light and quiet), it’s a bit boring, but for instance for a family dinner, it is quite ok.

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