I rarely, if ever, go to the east side of Amsterdam, finding it too far for public transport or having no reason to go since I didn’t know anybody in that part of town. Half-forgetting I had a brunch date with an ex-colleague today, the hour that it took to get to Beter En Leuk (Better And Nice) was substantial but once there, was a discovery of sorts, much like visiting a new country all together. I’m only exaggerating a bit as I really felt like a non-resident Amsterdammer – too many hipsters, folks on scooters with strange wigs, and hearing so much English it seemed like I crossed the channel to England.
I read up a bit about the place we were meeting at and to my slight horror when I got there confirmed it was indeed a vegan restaurant. I looked at the menu again and while I couldn’t see too many things that looked appealing, the curiosity was enough to keep me in place, especially as we were able to sit in the relatively nice outdoor sidewalk area, the service staff were much nicer than usual local standards, and most importantly I’d never tried vegan food ever. In the end, the coffee and smoothie were satisfying, and the buckwheat pancakes were edible – just about. Despite my natural instinct to order a side of bacon, which unfortunately there isn’t a vegan version of, I was able to finish most of my meal with little complaint. I’m quite sure Teko would have disputed the Better And Nice tag and hated the place if he even dared try but I was glad to have done it myself. Who knows when I’ll be in these parts again anyway.