“ Restaurant on Niuewendijk, Amsterdam. „
When we eat out, my partner and I rarely plan to go anywhere specific; we may think about returning somewhere we know we like, but more often than not we'll go for a stroll and pick somewhere we like, whether at home or on holiday. This is how we discovered the Q Global Kitchen on Amsterdam's Nieuwendijk: we liked the look of it, the menu looked good, we were hungry, so in we went.
First of all, a confession: I've had to look up the name of this restaurant. We call it the "Marilyn Monroe restaurant" as it has a mannequin in the window dressed to look like Marilyn. The name Q Global Kitchen does ring a bell, I must have noticed it on the menu during one of our three visits, but I hadn't taken note of it at the time.
Q Global Kitchen, located in the city centre between Damrak and Singel, has a touch of American diner style to it. There is a choice of tables with proper wooden chairs, or tables with chairs on one side and squashy armchairs on the other. The walls are decorated with cult movie posters.
One of the strengths of Q Global Kitchen is its menu. There is a wide variety of dishes to cater for all tastes - pasta, pizzas, burgers, meat and fish dishes, and even a vegetarian section with five choices. There are lighter meals of sandwiches and salads available too, and a selection of starters and desserts.
We've now visited three times, for lunch, late lunch/early dinner and dinner, and have sampled a few different dishes. I've had the fish burger, and pizza twice. The first time we were there I had the fish burger and my partner had a hamburger; the fish burger was very good, tasty and good quality, accompanied by a generous portion of nice chips. My partner also enjoyed his hamburger. I can't remember what he had on the second visit, but I had the pizza vegetariana. I was very hungry at the time, so I managed to eat almost the whole thing - but with a slightly thicker than usual base, it was rather filling. The toppings were fresh, and the pizza was cooked just how I like it: just starting to brown but not overdone.
However, on our third visit, in March this year, it wasn't quite so good. My partner opted for the hamburger again, while I revisited the pizza, choosing the pizza funghi this time. The pizza just wasn't as good as I remembered it: the base seemed a bit on the doughy side, and somehow wasn't an Italian or American style pizza. The mushrooms were also a bit odd - I can't decide if they weren't fresh, but they certainly had a slightly slimy texture to them which you might expect of tinned mushrooms. As for my partner, his burger wasn't bad, but he said afterwards that he didn't think we should go back as his chips weren't great, and there are definitely better chips in Amsterdam.
Service at the Q Global Kitchen is always average. Not overly efficient, but also not bad, it can feel like we're waiting a bit longer than we should for our meal, even though it has always been quiet when we've been there. Prices are around average, with a main course and soft drink each coming to Euro20-25 in total.
So for somewhere that we have enjoyed on previous visits, our most recent experience was something of a disappointment. I wouldn't say that we'll never go back, but we're probably done with Q Global Kitchen for a while. There are plenty of other places to try after all, and we've discovered a new American diner on Warmoesstraat which is very good.