Summer has arrived! We are finally seeing more sun and good weather calls for late night dinners under the blue sky. We see restaurants moving their guests outside to enjoy the sun shining and fresh wind blowing. So you may find yourself asking: where can I combine the sun, sea and beach that the Netherlands has to offer with exquisite food?
In Overveen, in the middle of the dunes behind the beach of Bloemendaal, you can find a two Michelin-star gem. Restaurant de Bokkedoorns has been around since 1961. It serves fine food and has a great atmosphere. Now that the terrace is open, you have another reason to visit: the restaurant’s sunny terrace is idyllic. It overlooks a small pond and, if you are lucky, you may see the deer grazing in the distance. It offers both shade through plenty of umbrellas and sun in many areas to relax into the summer evening.
Delicious summer food with two- star quality
De Bokkedoorns has a traditional French kitchen, but often uses modern flavors from other parts of the world. A seasonal dish that has won over the hearts of their guests before, is making a comeback this summer. The Ceviche is chef Roy Eijkelkamp’s favorite dish on the menu at the moment: “a traditional Peruvian dish that is a mixture of fish, fruits, and vegetables in an acidic marinade of citrus juices. We created a special twist on this iconic dish with a cremaux of Colaturo di Alici, adding anchovy pearls and a passionfruit vinaigrette. It is fresh and light, but also nutritious. Perfect for summer,” explains Roy.
The best wine for the season.
Each season, maître-Sommelier Niels van Overmeire and Sommelier Jane Lasschuit take to the hills of many European countries and beyond to taste the best wines. De Bokkedoorns’ wine cellar has an extensive collection that has been built over the years, therefore the wine list has something for everyone. During summer, the sommeliers find that their guests tend to go for lighter, elegant wines, rather than full-bodied, earthy or oaked wines.
“We often suggest a light rosé from Côtes de Provence. Rosé wines have a little more body, but are still light and fresh, which makes it perfect for the season. Lunch or dinner, another option to enjoy on our terrace is Blanc De Blancs Champagne. This personal favorite is made from one single varietal: Chardonnay. It has a higher acidity and tastes a little crisper and more tart on the palate.” Jane Lasschuit says.
If you were looking to try the ceviche, go for a fresh Riesling from the Rheingau region. This wine is great to pair with the dish and really enhances the different flavors. It is a dry wine with pronounced acidity and aromas of citrus fruits and smoke-tinged minerality. The Rheingau Riesling wines are typically more “masculine” than its equivalent from the Mosel.
More about pairing the menu with wine
De Bokkedoorns was one of the first star restaurants to cancel their wine packages – and for a good reason too! It now offers a large selection of wine by the glass. Pascal Beeren, owner of de Bokkedoorns explains that “after COVID-19, I was sitting with our chef Roy Eijkelkamp and maître Niels van Overmeire one day. We came to the conclusion that we never order a wine menu ourselves. At the end of the evening, you have had eight glasses, and no longer an idea of what you exactly drunk. Also, there are always a few glasses in between that we found just not quite right. So why would you recommend such an arrangement to your own guests? We have three sommeliers on staff and a beautiful menu. So surely you should not be messing around in the house wine category. We had to explain that to our guests in the beginning, but since we have become much more flexible with wine by the glass, everyone actually likes it much better this way.”
Three generations of culinary success
De Bokkedoorns from Overveen is an extraordinary story. The restaurant sits right next to Haarlem and is mere minutes away from the beach of Bloemendaal. It was founded in 1961 by John Beeren sr. and his wife Miep as an ordinary dining establishment. Their son John was made co-owner and in 1978 it received its first Michelin star. He was responsible for the turnaround to fine dining, the concept that secured two Michelin stars in 1991. A rating that still stands. Since 2016, Pascal Beeren took over and now holds the keys to this culinary kingdom. After three generations, the restaurant is still thriving and was proudly listed in the MICHELIN guide for the 45th time this year! Very unique, since no other Dutch restaurant has held a Michelin-star for this long, while being owned by the same family and none of them ever being a chef.
Pascal about their journey; “We have always wanted to cook the most delicious food for our guests with exquisite flavors. Something they cannot just make at home. At the same time, we try to create good atmosphere and excellent, friendly service. Many of our guests consider the restaurant their second home and living room. I do not think there is a greater compliment than that.”
Restaurant De Bokkedoorns
2051 EB Overveen