Asparagus, which is also known as ‘white Gold’ in the Netherlands has its very own day of celebration here. You might think this is a little extreme to celebrate a vegetable, but the Dutch simply love asparagus. I was asked to go to an asparagus party at the Radisson Blu hotel at Schipol airport and I was very excited at the prospect of trying out various asparagus-themed food from their new chef.
This celebration is on the 10th April each year, and marks the official opening of the asparagus season (though the season can start un-officially before then, or after – it really depends on the weather and whether the asparagus is ready to be harvested). This means that asparagus will start appearing on restaurant menus across the Netherlands, so make the most of it while you can as the season only lasts between 6-8 weeks and it is already a feature on the Radisson Blu Schiphol menu.
The asparagus party was hosted by Radisson Blu Amsterdam Airport hotel, Park Inn by Radisson Blu, MeerBusiness, and JAN . The menu was definitely asparagus-themed and the asparagus was supplied by Aspergehof, which is about 40km away from Amsterdam. It included an asparagus capuccino with dutch prawns and nutmeg, a tarte tatin of asparagus with duck and a tapenade of beef sausage with asparagus shoots and raw asparagus.
Reypenaer cheese also had a stall there (my favourite is the 1 year old, and the VSOP), and there was very good wine from Terra Vina too – my favourite was the Domaine Bernhard & Reibel Vin D’Alsace.
The bar was full of people, and the atmosphere was really fun. I was also very happy to see that the bar had Pimm’s, because the Dutch don’t really know what it is (I introduced Michiel to it when we were on a visit to London, as he said he had never even heard of it, let alone tried it!)
A big thankyou to Radisson Blu Amsterdam Airport hotel, Park Inn, MeerBusiness and JAN for hosting the party and asking me to go along. I also want to thank all of the staff for making me feel so welcome, and especially to Tim Kuipers who spent the whole evening introducing me to people, and looking after me in general. I even got a goody bag with some of the ‘white gold’ to take home with me. Yummy!
You can follow more of my Radisson Blu adventures with the #blublogger hastag on twitter and facebook.
Please note that I am a Radisson Blu ambassador for 2014, and I was invited to attend this party free of charge, but as always my opinions are my own.