Discover Benelux, Issue 32, August 2016

Page 58

Discover Benelux | Top Food, Drink & Sleep Spots | De Pijp

Mouthwatering Eastern-Mediterranean dishes TEXT: THESSA LAGEMAN | PHOTOS: RESTAURANT MAYDANOZ

After a long day of sightseeing, why not head to Restaurant Maydanoz? Here you can try all kinds of delicious EasternMediterranean dishes from countries like Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Greece. This friendly restaurant has received many good reviews from Dutch food critics over the years. Maydanoz is conveniently located close to many popular tourist attractions, such as the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, the Vondelpark and the Heineken Experience. “Our restaurant’s name is Turkish and means ‘parsley’, which is a much-used herb in our cuisine,” explains owner Kazim Soy. He adds that all dishes are made with fresh ingredients and organic herbs, which are brought from Eastern Turkey. The main courses are prepared on the typical charcoal grill. Guests can choose between chicken, lamb, seafood and vegetarian

dishes. For starters there is a wide selection of different cold and warm ‘mezzes’, which are comparable to Spanish tapas. “We get many compliments about our tasty hummus and calamari,” Soy says. “Our special pumpkin and walnut dessert, served with homemade cream shanti, is popular too.” The restaurant has recently received several good reviews from Dutch newspapers, for example from the well-known Dutch food critic Johannes van Dam. The independent food critics website named Maydanoz as Amsterdam’s best Turkish restaurant over the years 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. Inside the restaurant, there is space for 45 people. The colourful handmade tiles and lamps create a pleasant atmosphere. Outside on the terrace, another 20 people can sit. Soy: “Here you can enjoy the sunset, for example while drinking one of our excellent Turkish wines.”


When you do what you are passionate about, you do it with all your heart. Kelly Zaal, the owner of Yay Health Store & More in Amsterdam, is one of those inspiring people. As a young girl, she aspired to have a career that would be meaningful and help others. Zaal made her wish come true. Her shop is based in Amsterdam on the buzzing Albert Cuyp street. While this street is known for its everyday bustle, Yay is a calm centre for wellbeing with its own yoga classes and a shop that sells health-related products, including health foods. “When I was 14, I tried out recipes and cooked them for my family. I wanted to try out all the flavours. Not all were a success, but that is the point,” Zaal says. She still enjoys getting to know new flavours and is always searching for original recipes. She loves to travel; for her it is a great way to explore other cultures and learn how people take care of themselves abroad. 58 | Issue 32 | August 2016

As Zaal grew older, she wanted to know the origins of what she was eating, so she decided to study nutrition. It was only a matter of time before she surrounded herself with the right people and shared her wisdom for a healthier lifestyle with the rest of the world. This store is not called Yay for nothing. Want to know more about how to make the best out of your own lifestyle? Zaal’s boutique welcomes you.

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