Girlie weekend

Hello, long time no type!  I seem to be terrible at multitasking …  in spite of generally having lots of free time, I’ve been wrapped up in trying to start my little food project, and then in finishing my Coursera finance course (I passed – yaaaass!), and then more recently building a website for a friend of a friend.  So many exciting things whirling around in my head that I’ve been neglecting my little blog.

Last weekend my lovely friend Marjolein came to visit and, as Pieter was in Prague, we had ourselves the ultimate girlie weekend.  Like watching trashy TV, making our own face masks, and eating everything.

We started off so innocently, with a brisk walk along the canals circling the city and big ol’ bowl of health at Crop on Biltstraat. They’ve only just opened and I’ve been seeing their name all over the internet, so I figured we had to give it a try.

The idea is that you build your own salad to your own exacting specifications from a sort of checklist menu. Prices are quite reasonable for the quantity you get, which is always a positive! The restaurant is bright and very airy with a lovely atmosphere. The salads weren’t the best we’d had at a lunch café, but overall we were really happy with our lunch and I would definitely go back.

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From Crop we wandered on over to the shopping streets and bonded over our shared ‘aging skin’ complex – it’s a thing! – before somehow winding up in my kitchen with faces full of mashed banana, oatmeal and honey … I would recommend it if only for the laughs! As far as making me look like a young spring chicken, well …

On Saturday night we dined in style at Meneer Smakers, a low-key and super popular Utrecht establishment specializing in cheap burgers & fries, and then hopped on over to Zies for some dessert wines, because: girls’ night! The night was excellent and spent in lots and lots of laughter!

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The debauchery only continued the next day as we set off towards the Janskerkhof for a wine festival.
With a pit stop at Bagels & Beans, naturally. What girlie weekend is complete without B&B?!

I went for an old favourite: the Tuscan bagel.
They bring you little ramekins of sun-dried tomatoes, black olive tapenade (both of which I actually usually avoid but love on this specific bagel for some reason!), toasted pine nuts, your choice of cream cheese, and some fresh basil. So delicious!

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We lucked out on this day and arrived at the wine festival under a clear blue sky, possibly rather sweaty in the heat.

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Several wine producers and retailers had set up booths on Janskerkhof and were offering up a small selection for thirty visitors. Live music was playing and snacks were abundant … pretty much my ideal festival, really.

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We quickly scoped out something that really stroke (striked?) our fancy (that sounds weird doesn’t it?): the friet fiets, aka the Fry Bike. Oh baby. The Dutch are geniuses. A delightful young fellow whipped us up a fresh batch of organic fries directly from his bicycle, and let me tell you: they were glorious!

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The same company has a physical store right off Neude, so if there’s one take-away from this post, it’s to hit that up immediately!

These sorts of weekends are just amazing and I’m so glad Marjolein and I only live a teensy little border apart. When you meet someone who loves food as much as you do and is willing to put oatmeal and banana on her face with you, you hold onto that one!