Hello, I’m back, and so is the Rollende Keukens! Unlike me, who has had an unexpected break for very dull reasons, the Rollende Keukens is an annual event, and this year it’s bigger, bolder and busier than ever.
There are many of the same stalls as we found last year, but there are a lot of new stalls, and also new concepts from old favourites. This year there is much more music, although sadly there are fewer lectures.
As we made our way around the stalls yesterday, some trends were very clear. Last year, cocktail bars reigned supreme. This year it is all about the barbecue, with many stalls selling spit-roasts, pulled pork, char-grilled chickens, and much more.
Of course, there is more to offer, from around the world, from Indian and Thai to Mexican. There are new styles of cuisine, and even some healthy options. The crew from Fifteen Amsterdam have brought a mobile kitchen this year, although there was no sign of Jamie Oliver. I noticed that a lot more stalls have an eye on sustainability, with great organic, more local, and brilliant seasonal fare on offer.
There are also a good deal more sweet vans, selling ice creams, cakes, churros, crepes, poffertjes, and all manner of delicious puddings.
It also seems that there is a lot more glamour this year. The stallholders have really upped their game, with stylish stalls, and beautifully decorated servers. The vans are festooned with beautiful and themed decoration, that matches the beautiful food.
Of course, as one of the organisers of the Rollende Keukens, Mister Kitchen is back, with another lovely rhubarb tasting menu, which at €15 for three courses is an absolute steal. We have lined this up for Saturday, but places go quickly, so we’ll need to be prompt. I can already heartily recommend the Rabarcello. Delicious and refreshing. Of course, I’m eyeing this up to experiment with for my rhubarb glut.
The most exciting concept I found so far this year is the World’s Smallest Restaurant. Although I didn’t take my tape measure, This cannot be larger than 2m x 1.5m, and is really cute. You get a reservation for 10 minutes, and booking is essential, because this is popular, although the waiting list is not too long.
Inside is lovely, with cute decor, and well-thought out features. The curtain at the front is very fine, and you can see out onto all the people getting excited about the restaurant, but they can’t see you.
The restaurant feels very private. And is so small that the waiters can’t fit in it too. You order through a letterbox…
…and receive your food through a hatch in the back wall. There is a limited choice, although for €3.50 per person, it really is exceptionally good value for money, as you get two tapas dishes and a drink. The smallest restaurant in the World, with the smallest prices in the World. You can’t say fairer than that.
Rollende Keukens is on from 13.00 – 23.00 for the whole of Helmervaart Weekend (Thursday 9th May to Sunday 12th May). This is long enough to break your visits into bite-sized pieces, so you could conceivably eat from every stall.