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Oct 27, 2011 04:47 AM

Riijstaffel Event at Quince

If you've ever been to Amsterdam and had this Indonesian type of dinner, you might want to book this event at Quince on Jan. 18th 2012--two sittings. Books up fast as last time I was too late.

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  1. I dont have much idea of Riijstaffel
    How is this for someone who is mildly lactose intolerant?

    3 Replies
    1. re: garfield

      Rijstaffel is a comprised of a number of Indonesian dishes- curries, noodle dishes, rice dishes, satay. Here's a wiki link, with a list of common dishes: I can't think of any Indonesian dishes that contain lactose- so pretty good option for someone who is mildly lactose intolerant!

      Thanks for the heads up, kristoronto!

      1. re: garfield

        Probably your best bet is to phone Quince directly and tell them you're lactose intolerant and see what they say.

      2. Sounds great. Oddly enough, I've been craving a great riijstaffel lately-fond memories of ones in Amsterdam!

        1. Excellent! Mr. Vuitton and I went to the one they had a few weeks ago. We loved it. Red Pepper (Hot Pepper?) in Amsterdam was where we first had it and loved it. Quince's chef/owner is Dutch.

          9 Replies
          1. re: CocoaChanel

            Thanks for the thumbs up. Sama Sebo was the excellent restaurant I visited in Amsterdam. About 25 years ago there was a restaurant in Toronto called Riijstaffel. I never did get there and it closed. Not sure why it's never caught on here?

            1. re: CocoaChanel

              what was the riijstaffel at quince like -- what was served, and was it served as separate courses or as a buffet?

              1. re: autopi

                It was served as seperate courses. Very flavourful and variied dishes.

                I have a menu at home, I will post it later, but Mr Vuitton and I will be going back
                I did do a quick overview recently on another Indonesian restaurant thread if you want to stalk me.

                1. re: CocoaChanel

                  So here is the menu from Quince's rijsttafel from Sept 28. I;ll add some comments about the dishes, where I have specific recollections. Overall, the meal was excellent - the flavours were all very interesting, the spicing was not "dumbed down" (thank goodness) and for $55pp, Mr. Vuitton and I thought it was great value and we will be going to their next one. The dishes were served in groups of 3 or 4 together to the table.

                  Main dishes:

                  Rempeh - spiced meat balls with coconut and ketjap coconut sauce - very tasty; the coconut was worked into the meatballs so the texture was different that what I associate a meatball to be, but flavourful and not over cooked

                  Sate Ajam - grilled chicken kebab, peanut sauce - I think this was my favourite dish; tender chicken, a beautiful thick, creamy peanut sauce with peanut chunks in it

                  Sambal Daging - braised pork stew with tamarind - I recall the pork being a bit overcooked/dry

                  Udang rendang - spicy coconut shrimp with lime leaf

                  Sambal Goreng Telor - eggs in spiced tomato sauce - this was my least favourite dish, but I just don't like eggs. The eggs were perfectly hard boiled, but i am just not an egg fan

                  Sambal Ikan Tomat - brased fish in lemongrass tomato sauce - I recall liking this dish

                  Gado Gado - Indonesian style vegetable salad with nut chips and peanut sauce

                  Rendang pedang - dark spiced braised beef with coconut - also a wonderful dish, with a slow warm heat to it. The beef was tender

                  Babi pangang - roasted pork belly, sweet and sour sauce

                  Ajam Pedis - roasted chicken with chili, garlic, lemongrass, tamarind

                  Sambal Goreng Boontjis - spiced fried green beans - these were FANTASTIC! Great flavour and snap to the beans

                  Accompanied with steamed and fried rice -- lovely, light and not overcooked

                  Side dishes:

                  Atjar Tjampour - sweet and sour vegetables

                  Seroundeng - fried coconut and peanuts

                  Peanut satay sauce

                  Sambal goren ketang kering - spiced deep fried potato matchsticks (for those who remember, these looked like Hickory Sticks)

                  Roedjak Manis - spiced sweet fruit chutney

                  Kroepoek Oedang - shrimp chips - not at all oily, very crisp

                  Sambal badjak - fried spiced sambal oelek

                  I'm sorry I can't provide more specific details. It was over a month ago and there has been a lot going on in the meantime. I do know Mr Vuitton and I enjoyed our evening and want to go back.

                  1. re: CocoaChanel

                    Thanks for your detailed recollection--I can hardly wait to go!

                    1. re: CocoaChanel

                      Thanks for the effort put into typing all of that :)
                      I shall be there with some friends come January. Hungry 3 months out.

                      1. re: CocoaChanel

                        thanks for the write up -- it sounds fantastic!

                      2. re: autopi

                        I found it to be a little more refined that what I had in Amsterdam but I suspect the place we went there was something of a tourist trap. It's not a buffet or big all at once lazy susan. They bring out rice and nasi goreng and garnishes at the beginning then bring the dishes to the table in waves, 4 dishes per wave, I think there were three waves so 12 dishes in all as well as an amuse (and maybe a separate appetizer course) I thought it was great value at the price.

                    2. Everyone, to which restaurant in Amsterdam would you compare the Quince riijstaffel experience?

                      10 Replies
                      1. re: Googs

                        I've booked too.

                        The original Rijstafel was to show off the different cuisines found in Indonesia -- it can have scores of dishes, each served by a different wait person. I remember it being 32 courses.

                        It was initially condemned as the height of colonial overbearance, but it was all for showing off to the visiting diplomats. Since the original servers were slaves, it was found to be a bad practice.


                        1. re: Dean Tudor

                          I understand and have experienced riijstaffel in Amsterdam. Certain Hounds have been comparing Quince to Amsterdam restaurants. I would like to know which ones as a barometer.

                          1. re: Googs

                            But Googs, even rijstaffel in Amsterdam can be variable, so it's hard to use that as a barometer. The food at the rijstafel I experienced in Amsterdam was not nearly as tasty as the food at the rijstafel I experienced in Calgary. Amsterdam's Kantjil & de Tiger rijstafel used previously frozen string beans in the veggie dishes and most of the food tasted like tourist trapkrap.

                            I like the Dutchified Indonesian-style food made by Dutch Canadian friends that's served in their homes and at their Dutch Canadian clubs.

                            I'd bet the rijstafel at Quince will be a better experience than the one I experienced at Kantjil & de Tiger in Amsterdam. I can't make it to the rijstafel at Quince in Jan, but I am most definitely a fan of the food at Quince.

                            2110 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON M4S 2A5, CA

                            1. re: prima

                              The best I've ever had was actually in a friend's home better than what I tried in Amsterdam - but maybe I ended up in a tourist trap.

                              The wife is CDN and the hubby Dutch. They prepared such an amazing feast when I was visiting them in Den Haag and THEN they told me the 20 or so dishes they prepared was not the full spread! I'm still amazed when I think about it.

                              1. re: prima

                                Precisely prima and JennaBean. If the comparison is to some Amsterdam tourist trap, I'm less than interested. I'm trying to get the baseline.

                              2. re: Googs

                                This is where Mr. Vuitton and I had a rijsttafel in Amsterdam (I think we had The Sultan and I menu)


                                Mr. Vuitton had experienced other rijsttafel's in Amsterdam and thought this was one was best. The one at Blue Pepper was the first/only one I had tried prior to Quince.

                                Blue Pepper had more heat, deeper flavours than Quince (from what I recall), but it is relative. Quince's was certainly excellent. I am not sure north/mid Toronto would embrace the heat/depth/texture of flavour available in Amsterdam. This is really not a criticism, just an observation. Also, Quince's kitchen was putting a huge amount of food out in one evening relative to Blue Pepper where rijsttafel is part of their regular menu - the kitchen requires different scale.

                                I think Quince's rijstaffel is excellent, and Mr. Vuitton and I booked again for the January seating (I think we got the last table for two). The flavours are rich and complex and the the chef does not dumb it down for north Toronto tastes - thank Gord! Quince's version is the only one available in Toronto as far as I know and Mr Vuitton and I love the flavours and find the $55pp price point to be excellent value for money (they could charge more and we would still go!). We want to continue to patronize this evening for as long as Chef and his lovely wife Jennifer (front of the house) are willing to put it on.

                                1. re: CocoaChanel

                                  Very informative CocoaChanel. Thank you.

                                  1. re: Googs

                                    It was most definitely not in a tourist area of Amsterdam. It was in one of the residential neighbourhoods. I got the recommendation from a client in Amsterdam.

                                    1. re: CocoaChanel

                                      Oh I wasn't trying to suggest I'm any kind of expert. Far from it. The times tried were disappointing. The service aspect is nice, but you can't eat the service.

                                      One place I recall specifically was Sama Sebo that had been recommended time and again by the locals both clients and hotel staff. The spicing was dulled down for god knows who and wasn't worth the calories or time. I really could have used that heat/depth/texture of flavour you refer to. You could fare a little better at Blauw, at least you could back then, but maybe I was looking more for Indonesian flavours than the show.

                                      Still a few well made dishes right here in town would be nice. The last real Indonesian restaurant in Toronto (Cabbagetown specifically) closed mere months and just a few good meals after it opened about 3 years ago. Quince seems to have the only game in town.

                                      1. re: Googs

                                        I can't believe that Sama Sebo is still in existence! I was there 35 years ago when it was recommended by Gourmet magazine. It was excellent back then-Ha!