Let's get Spanish at the official opening of Mercat

Let’s get Spanish at the official opening of Mercat

Sep 11, 2012 |  by  |  Food, Spots
About the author
Laura is a 25 year old nonpracticing psychologist. As a hopeless romantic she loves to write, dream and wander around the city looking for new adventures and inspirations. Stay tuned for an inside peek into the daily life of one of Amsterdam's inhabitants!

Last Sunday my photographer and me went to the official opening of Mercat, a new restaurant based on the famous Mercado de la Boqueria in Barcelona. Situated on the Oostelijke Handelskade, right next to Panama, its interior appears to be a combination of industrial design with a rural touch. The architecture does indeed resemble the Boqueria and although this is a real restaurant, you get the feeling you wandered off the Ramblas to scout some fresh octopus and a few juicy tomatoes.

Authentic and local cultural cuisine

That’s exactly the feeling owner Bert van der Leden tries to evoke: “We wanted to combine the market experience while sitting in a fancy restaurant. We went to Barcelona and Madrid to get inspired by Spanish culture and cuisine, and thus created a place where everyone’s welcome to eat for a friendly price in a nice atmosphere, located in an upcoming neighbourhood.”

No culinary adjustments for the Dutch taste.

Needless to say, my Spanish blood made me very curious about the menu and the quality of the dishes. Juan Lanzas Huiting, the half-Spanish, half-Dutch chef of Mercat explains: “Because Spanish gastronomy is so diverse and therefore has so much to offer, we wanted to put together a menu with some of the best regional plates. Of course I have my own ideas about how to cook certain dishes, for example the classic paella. But I always try to keep the dishes as authentic as possible, so no culinary adjustments for the Dutch taste.”

Although the food is no competition for my Abuela, the concept of the restaurant is renewing. The interior is unique, making it the first classy Spanish restaurant in town. Very suitable to go for drinks with your colleagues, but also to grab a bit before hitting the club next door. Best time to visit: when cold en depressing winter gets here to wander off in Mediterranean spheres.


Where: Oostelijke Handelskade 4
Website: Mercat
Opening hours: Sunday- Thursday: 09.00-01.00, Friday-Saturday: 09.00- 02.00.

Photos by Kim Buijs

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