When it comes to pastry it’s hard to beat the French, but in the southern part of The Netherlands (Limburg) you’ll find some serious sweet stuff. Good for us Zoet & Hartig, a cosy tearoom/lunch spot at the Haarlemmerdijk, brought the pastry of patisserie Peter Lemmens from Gronsveld to Amsterdam. Count on jaw-dropping views when entering Zoet & Hartig: tower-like cakes filled with chocolate, meringue, mocha cream and chantilly – you have to see them to believe it – and of course vlaaien, those quintessential flat tarts Limburg is famous for. Vlaaien excel in simplicity and are filled with fruit, such as apple, apricot and gooseberries. My favourite version is the one with rice. More precisely: a vlaai with a mildly sweet rice pudding and sweet, juicy cherries on top. Try a piece at Zoet & Hartig and have a talk with the funny owners, who are passionate about the products they offer, not only about the sweet stuff (pasty, handmade chocolates of Chocolate Company) but also about the savoury goodies (Italian-style sandwiches, wraps). An essential stop while shopping in the Haarlemmerbuurt.
Zoet & Hartig
Vlaai with rice and cherries, one whole pie, €23.60
Haarlemmerdijk 158, City Centre (Haarlemmerbuurt)
+31 (0) 20 767 04 34
Opening hours: Tuesday-Saturday 9.30am-5.30pm, Sunday 11am-5.30pm