In February, restaurant Bentick opened its doors in the old stables of Amerongen Castle. In this historic location, a gorgeous restaurant was born while preserving many old elements. A restaurant where you can dine with ambiance, but it’s also a beautiful location for a coffee or elaborate lunch.
Drinking in the vegetable garden
At the gate, we’re given a friendly welcome and shown through the garden towards the castle’s vegetable patch. Heavily distracted by the beautiful flowers and plants, I make it to the vegetable patch a little while later, where the tasting will be taking place. The chef of the restaurant (Tommy Janssen), chef of the event locations (Simon Verkerk), and the crew are already busy preparing various bites and drinks.
During the acquaintance session, the sommelier Jan-Jaap offers me an alcohol-free Gin & Tonic with elderflower and mint, in part made with the herbs from the garden. Sipping on this delicious and refreshing drink, I study the beautiful surroundings. The garden has something exotic about it, I feel like I’m on an estate in France instead of in Amerongen. I awake from my dream as the chef of the restaurant stands beside me with the first appetiser of the day: oysters from Zeeland with PX, saline vegetables, and watermelon. This is the beginning of a culinary party! After the delicious oysters, a parade follows of bites covering parties, weddings, and special occasions held in this location.
“Every morning, I begin my day with a walk through the vegetable patch and pick the herbs that I need in the kitchen.” Tommy Janssen
Extensive lunching in the stables
It’s time to visit the restaurant for an extensive lunch. Once we’ve arrived, I immediately notice the old elements of the stables: the iron and wooden fences, the feeders, and the old floor that you can still see through a glass plate. The high ceiling ensures a stately appearance.
The culinary party continues and we enjoy the dishes with accompanying wines. We begin with a refreshing liquid candy of Granny Smith, yuzu, and coconut. A sensation when it lands and explodes on your tongue. All of the dishes that follow are delicious. The wines have been carefully chosen by the young sommelier. I’ll take another glass of Sigalas Santorinj (Assyrtiko – 2014) – a deliciously aromatic Greek wine.
We break for a tour of the restaurant. We walk to the private dining area, where you get a view of the kitchen where all gorgeous dishes are made. We also take a look in the wine room, the old saddle room of the stables, where all the wine waits to be poured. Then, back at our tables, we wait for dessert; again beautifully presented with a delicious glass of dessert wine, followed by the tastiest little sweets I’ve ever had and a cup of black coffee.
Restaurant Bentinck is a beautiful place to spend an afternoon enjoying a glass of wine on the terrace with a delicious sandwich. But coffee and cake are also there for visitors who’d like to split their bike ride with a pit stop. In the evening, you can take a seat in the restaurant after a short walk through the amazing garden, or dine on the terrace as the sun sets.
Note: Restaurant Bentinck is operating on a new concept, with focus on lunch and a simple menu. Not the fancy restaurant that is was in the beginning.