GIRASSOL

Girassol was in my shortlist of restaurants to go to on one of our impromptu Friday night dinners, and even when we decided to limit those dinners for practical reasons I kept it as an option in case the itch needed to be scratched. From photos I saw online it looked like a restaurant transported from Lisbon, a place I’ve only the fondest memories of, and plopped somewhat incongruously here in Amsterdam town. The menu looked promising and the fact they’ve been around since the 80s meant it was practically a classic as far as foreign cuisines went. The opportunity came last night when Teko suggested we have a nice lunch somewhere today, preferably outside the city, he said. Whether or not I misheard, I understood it to mean Eastside instead and quickly booked us a table for a culinary trip back to Portugal. Luckily he gave in.

After driving the short distance to Oost, very close to where we brunched recently in Drovers Dog, there was time to enjoy views of the busy Amstel river before walking through the door as the first customers for the day.

For the entire meal we were the only ones sitting in the main dining room, while others opted to sit in the less glamorous tables riverside. Giving off a Portuguese fishing town vibe, the peace and quiet indoors was a total luxury, and combined with the very light Alentejo wine, the delicious sea bass, which I completely cleaned off my plate, and the dulce de leche-esque dessert, our window-side lunch on this beautiful, autumn Sunday proved to be one  of the loveliest meals I’ve had in a long time.

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