Eastwood – assemble your own perfect dinner


Last Friday Armand had dinner at Eastwood, the new pop-up restaurant from DoubleTree by Hilton which is within walking distance of the Central Station in Amsterdam. The restaurant officially opened on 22 May and the location has two functions. In the morning, it’s the breakfast restaurant of the hotel and every afternoon will be converted into a grill restaurant. The tabletops, chalk boards, paintings and lighting get another look. Even the clothing of the staff changes.


The restaurant is located below the hotel and has a great potential. Especially the terrace outside will attract passers-by, even though it is not on the usual route towards the center. The first announcement of the opening was focused on a ‘beer & grill’ concept, the description ‘assemble your own perfect dinner’ would fit better. It is not a restaurant for people that have difficulties with choices since there are so many personalization options possible to meet your unique taste.

Assembling the dishes

The menu includes various building blocks from which the dishes can be put together. Potatoes are served as mashed potatoes, thin fries or hand cut fries. There are several vegetables and other side dishes to choose from, like risotto. For the main course guests can choose between meat, fish or vega. For meat-lovers a great exclusive offer of proper serving up to 800 grams are available.

Choice palette for personalization

With a choice from five knives that are presented on a magnetic cutting board, even the most cynical knife critic will be pleased. Earlier we wrote about using a herb cart and the ability to cut some fresh herbs at the table yourself. Eastwood extends this service with a range of sauces in glass bottles on the cart as well.

Shared ice cream bucket with toppings

The dessert was served as a single bucket of homemade ice cream on the table accompanied with nine different toppings. It’s a feast to work on the dessert this way and share the bucket. It was difficult to keep the special toppings apart, so a stylish card with the ingredients would complete it.

Small details

At Eastwood every detail mentioned before is well thought of. Many of the trends and examples we’ve spotted and published about on this website are integrated in the restaurant. This in addition to details such as stamped paper bags for the bread, name badges for the staff, Amsterdam’s specialty beers, the convenient use of segments in the restaurant at the beginning of the evening (so it looks busy early on) and the view of the bustling city life through the glass walls. The menu is not yet available online (the website is still under construction) but the price level is very okay and it’s a convenient place if you want to adjust portions and styles easily.

Wild Dining


  • Credits: Adriaan de Groot
  • Credits: Adriaan de Groot
  • Credits: Adriaan de Groot
  • Credits: Adriaan de Groot
  • Credits: Adriaan de Groot
  • Credits: Adriaan de Groot

Recently, a small collective started organizing luxury dinners at extraordinary locations. By the name of Wilddineren (‘Wild Dining’) a train compartment, the attic of the Beurs van Berlage (Amsterdam) and the red toilets of the Patronaat in Haarlem were used for surprising dinners.

Unique Wild Dining

Each dinner has a unique location, unique chefs and a unique dining concept. At the Beurs van Berlage guests were eating between the old boilers at the attic, but everyday locations like a train and a toilet can be transformed into an unusual dinner location as well. Earlier, the guys from Gastrovan, Masterchef cook Elise Calkoen, Seats2Meet, ‘Catering aan huis’ and Patronaat participated in Wild Dining.

Contrasting experiences

In addition to culinary delights, there are presentations, interesting guests, table roulette and live music during the dinners. The organization finds it addictive to surprise guests and bystanders. They want to amaze people and to confront them with activities outside their own paradigm. The organization indicates that the dinners are a reaction to the current overload of parties in old warehouses, food truck festivals and pop-up initiatives of shops and restaurants. The focus is primarily on creating contrasting experiences. With these dinners they aim to compete with theater, cinema’s and concerts, rather than to compete with regular restaurants.

There are a number of dinners scheduled, but the specific time and place will be revealed on the day itself.

Ecocapsule: the hiker’s cabin of the future?


Ecocapsule: a micro-shelter that operates off-grid and promises impressive sustainable technology including solar power, rainwater collection and filtration, and wind power.
Bratislava’s Nice Architects has unveiled a prototype of the Ecocapsule at the Pioneers festival in Vienna on 28 May. The ecocapsule comprises a total usable floorspace of 8 sq m (86 sq ft), and includes a kitchenette, toilet, shower, work and dining area, folding bed and internal and externally-accessed storage. Access to the home is gained through one door and it has two windows. The micro-home can be easily transported by trailer and the architects indicate that it can serve as a tiny house, additional bedroom or even office. And we think it would serve great as hiker’s cabin!

The sustainable hiker’s cabin

A lot of sustainable technology is built in this ecocapsule, like a 2.6 sq m (28 sq ft) solar array on the roof and integrated battery system. Ecocapsule also has a silent 750 W wind turbine that’s set on a retractable pole. The bathroom includes a composting toilet and a shower, and a rainwater collection and filtration system offers clean drinking water.
Nice Architects hopes to be ready for sale by the end of 2015 and promises a competitive price.

Pair music with food and activate the fifth sense


Former chef Barbara Werner wrote a book about pairing music with food and runs Musical Pairing pop-ups. She shows you how to create the perfect bite by combining all 5 senses: sight, smell, touch, taste and hearing.

Only BYOH at this event where they pair music with food

(BYOH) Bring Your Own Headset and Barbara Werner will teach you the essentials in assigning a numerical value to the food (FPN – Food Pairing Number) based on a mathematical formula. FPN is based on the primary ingredient (protein), the richness of the sauce, the weight (cooking method) and the heat index. You then find an equal numerical value in a musical piece (MPN – Musical Pairing Number), which is based on the following: primary instruments (musical family), beat, tempo and genre category.

What do you get when FPN = MPN?

For example: hot and spicy Mac & Cheese with as music: Coolio Gangsta Paradise. Vanilla ice cream with Pachelbel’s ‘Canon’. Tuna ahi with The Go Go’s or filet mignon with Pavarotti. Just BYOH to Barbara’s pop-up and enjoy all five senses. There’s also an app and a book on this subjet. A video of a pop-up get-together is to be seen here.
Spotted at a list of pop-up restaurants at the website of Fodor.

Grandma’s dishes served in pop-up restaurant


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Oma’s (Grandma’s) pop-up restaurant is a restaurant serving traditional Dutch dishes. The dishes are prepared by enthusiastic seniors who still have energy and want to remain active. Benefit: reintegration of elderly and guests can enjoy meatballs, green beans and other traditional Dutch dishes.

Six Commercial Economy students from Hogeschool Rotterdam came up with the idea to establish a pop-up restaurant for seniors. Nowadays the loneliness of seniors is a big social issue and that’s why the students chose to do something about it. The idea is that the seniors will make their traditional meals which will be served in the restaurant.

Grandma’s dishes

Grandma’s soup, meatloaf or stew, who hasn’t got a fond memory of eating that particular great dish from grandma? At Oma’s pop-up in Rotterdam, guests can taste these delicious and traditional Dutch dishes. These dishes were prepared by seniors that mostly cook only for themselves and love to create more social contact this way.

A day full of activities

The seniors will have a day full of activities at the Saturday that they make their dishes. There will be a workshop by a professional chef and in the evening the seniors are preparing the dishes. These dishes will be served in the restaurant and after a nice meal the guests will get the opportunity to visit the kitchen and have a conversation with the seniors. Maybe even swap recipes! The six students are hoping that after this day, the people involved will maintain contact with each other.

Peugeot designs an urban chic food truck 2.0


Peugeot has its own food truck, a bistro on wheels, conceived and developed by the Peugeot Design Lab. A super modern food truck, striking because one of the characteristics of the current food trucks is the ‘old fashioned’ image. With ‘Le Bistro du Lion‘ Peugeot will attend the Milan Design Week 2015 from 14 April followed by the French Pavilion of the World Expo Milano 2015.

‘Le Bistrot du Lion’, a Food Truck 2.0

The food truck was invented and developed by the Peugeot Design Lab, the Global Brand Design studio of the car brand. Cathal Loughnane, Head of Peugeot Design Lab, comments, “The end-users are always at the heart of all of our designs. For the Peugeot ‘food truck’, we wanted to create a complete mobile cuisine experience, not only creating a kitchen for the chef but a restaurant and cafe for the customers.  A lot of attention was given to opening up the kitchen and allowing the chef and food preparation to be as close to the public as possible. We also wanted to create a real sense of surprise as the compact Peugeot ‘Food Truck’ transforms into an amphitheatre-like dining space ‘Le Bistrot du Lion’.”

The dynamic ‘Le Bistrot du Lion’ is compact, featuring short front and rear overhangs to provide enhanced maneuverability, with a long wheelbase to offer considerable load volume. Once on site, the food truck spreads its wings to double its width. Accommodating 30 persons comfortably, with separate areas for food preparation, eating and refreshments as well as a DJ booth. On board, chefs benefit from two grilling plates and four induction burners as well as a deep fryer. The ventilation system ensures optimum air quality and a 400-litre refrigerated under-foot compartment allows food to stay fresh. A 350-litre refrigerator keeps drinks cold. Attached is a professional espresso machine, by Rocket Espresso. Not only does the Peugeot ‘food truck’ provide a one-of-a-kind dining experience, it does so at an  environmental way, having been specially designed to recuperate and recycle all waste.

Peugeot has selected the talented French chef Sven Chartier, of Saturne and Le Clown Bar in Paris, as the first culinary tenant of ‘Le Bistrot du Lion’.

Popup Melksalon


A milk bar (de MelkSalon) will pop up in Amsterdam. The MelkSalon is a temporary pilot and design room where the value of milk will be rediscovered. From 1 to 30 April at the Oude Spiegelstraat 6.

The Melksalon brings consumers, dairy farmers, dairy processors, designers and scientists together, to rediscover the value(s) of milk. Amongst other things they will organize lectures, design sessions, movie nights and walking tours. The full program is available here (unfortunately only in Dutch). With as highlights some Milk Talks and design sessions under the guidance of experts, an Old Amsterdam Milk Tour and some dinners with catchy titles such as Milk Unchained! And Milk Multi Culti! The dinners are in cooperation with Gilbert Kolff. The pop-up Melksalon is both a shop and a milk bar where you can walk in to taste special kinds of milk.

Why a Milk bar?

Around 1900, the streets of Amsterdam knew many milk parlors, where inhabitants could buy a glass of milk of local farmers. Today we buy milk in the supermarket, but milk still holds an important role in the Dutch history, (food)culture, economy, innovative spirit and in the countryside. Yet, many know little of this rich influence of milk. Milk in the supermarket has become an anonymous bulk product. At the same time there is a strong public debate about the consumption of milk, the impact on the environment and landscape, and the price one pays for it. With the pop-up MelkSalon they want to remove milk from the anonymity, and start a dialogue about the meaning of the product for our culture and society.

The pop-up Melksalon is an initiative of Sietske Klooster and Food Cabinet and is supported by the Dutch Dairy Association, The Milk Story, Triodos Foundation and the Committee Agricultural Innovation North Brabant.

Annie the Owl Bar – pops up in London


In London ‘Annie the Owl Bar’, a pop-up bar will open for a week in March. In this pop-up bar you can stroke owls while drinking cocktails. Like all animal themed bars, where you can stroke cats or for example bunnies, the owl themed pop-up bar also originates from Japan.

Annie the Owl Bar

‘Annie the Owl Bar’ is inspired by a bar in Tokyo (the video above is from that bar) and is already very popular. Tickets are only available by lottery. Entrance is 20 pounds and includes two cocktails. The entrance money is going to the charity ‘The Barn Owl Centre’. The bar will pop-up from 19 till 25 March from 8:30 p.m. until 2 a.m. The opening hours are adjusted to the sleeping habits of the owls. The exact location will be revealed to the winners of the lottery on 16 March.

A visit to ‘Annie the Owl Bar’ must be a dream come true for the diehard Harry Potter fan! 😉

Noma is selling the cutlery and tableware from their pop-up restaurant


  • Noma

A new development in the restaurant pop-up scene. The Danish restaurant Noma that was relocated from Copenhagen to Tokyo (at the Mandarin Oriental hotel) from early January until 14 February now sells all the chopsticks, forks, bowls and plates online.

About the cutlery and tableware from the pop-up restaurant

René Redzepi had 14 local Japanese artists and potters asked to create tableware and cutlery for his pop-up restaurant that is locally sourced. The result is a collection of artisanal and beautiful but expensive earthenware plates and bowls and organic lacquer forks, spoons and chopstick. The collection was co-curated by the designer and Arts&Science creative director, Sonya Park.

And now the collection is sold through the website.

Foodtruck special | Heet Brood


  • Heet brood
  • Heet brood
  • Heet brood
  • Heet brood
  • Heet brood
  • Heet brood
  • Heet brood

The Summer of 2014 was one of thriving food festivals. With several events focused on mobile kitchens and a lot of food trucks on smaller festivals throughout the country, the open air food offer grew tremendously. This was partly due to the efforts of The Food Line-Up, ‘Vleesch Noch Visch’ and ‘Rollende Keukens’.

Dutch food truck in Amsterdam

Recently an article on Dutch news website Nu.nl announced that the municipality of Amsterdam starts with giving out permits for food trucks on the streets of the Dutch capital. A great trigger to start a food truck special at Horecatrends.com and highlight some of the food trucks mentioned in the (Dutch) book ‘Reizende Sterren’ (Travelling Stars).

Heet Brood

The pictures on this page belong to ‘Heet Brood’, a food truck owned by Josine Beugels. It’s more than a food truck, it’s better described as theater-art-caravan where you can find some cheesy cooking skills with bread.

‘Reizende Sterren’

The book ‘Reizende Sterren’ is only available in Dutch. If you want to show your (favorite) food truck at the website please write to tip@spronsen.com. If you’re interested in the Dutch food truck scene we can definitely recommend the annual ‘Rollende Keukens’ event in Amsterdam in May with over a hundred trucks on one location.

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