Getting to Know You

When you move to a new town it takes a while to get to know your way around. Where are the good restaurants? Where is the best bakery? Where can you get a drink in a pub at a good price and with decent service (still looking for this one)? Where can a short person get jeans hemmed up to look like original hems? Etc. Etc.

In Haarlem we have a slight advantage over complete strangers to the town – we have friends here already. Said friends took us to a fondue restaurant Saturday night, called “in ‘t Goede Uur” (In the Good Hour – see, Dutch isn’t so hard).

Now, first you have to understand that I am a fondue purist. After living in Switzerland for many years I learned all about traditional fondue and what IS and ISN’T real fondue. I’ve already stood on my soapbox on this topic before so I won’t bother you again with my fondue rant. It’s just so you understand that going to a fondue restaurant in NL is something I’m skeptical about right away. I should not have been!

The restaurant puts you in the right mood from the first step in the door – it REEKS of cheese. This is a good thing! It’s small and dark and has big heavy wood beams everywhere. You feel like you are in a ski hut in the mountains. We order two kinds of fondue – one with gorgonzola and port and one with herbs and beer. Neither one is a traditional fondue but both were delicious and I think the Swiss would approve. At least they didn’t serve meat to dunk into cheese! Ugh! There were only two disappointments: One, the bread they served was fresh from the oven and was more like cake than bread. It should have been a day old and firmer; there was no chocolate fondue on the menu for dessert! I was really hoping for that.

All in all, I highly recommend in ‘t Goede Uur for fondue, and coming from a fondue snob that’s saying a lot!

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