A garden full of explosive flavours

Words: Ellen Scholtens

One of the region’s best restaurants lies just outside Rotterdam. A place where flowers play a leading role both on the ceiling and on the plate.

If there is something that typifies his kitchen, then it’s his perfectly-composed menus. Sometimes even the greatest of gourmet chefs can go overboard with their flavours, but Perceel’s Jos Grootscholten has mastered the art of balance.

Light, elegant dishes are interspersed with options that are full and richly flavoured without being overly heavy. A standout meal is his halibut dish served with a compote of rhubarb, chicory, sesame and a fish-bone reduction that has been roasting for two days. A true flavour explosion! If you want to know more about this meal’s preparation method, reserve a spot at Perceel’s brand new chef’s table.

The name of their restaurant refers to the garden plot (perceel) next to the restaurant. Besides fish and meat, the chef also likes to work with vegetables, home-grown herbs and edible flowers. Flowers feature in almost every dish. The oysters, for example, are with elderflower, yogurt and bergamot.

Jos Grootscholten and hostess/sommelier, Sharon Tettero, gained experience in some impressive restaurants, with some of the country’s best eateries featuring on their CVs. They also did internships at Berasategui in Spain’s San Sebastian and at Noma in Copenhagen. Now they have set up their own restaurant in the old town hall of Capelle aan den Ijssel, a beautiful building with a terrace overlooking the banks of the Hollandse IJssel.

The restaurant’s relaxed ambiance is captured in an artwork hanging on the wall; an enlarged image of a woman standing in a very tranquil pose. Although that was not how Sharon Tettero was feeling a while back when, 16 months after opening and completely out of the blue, Perceel was awarded a Michelin star. ‘We weren’t expecting to be so busy, but we are used to it now,’ she says with a smile.

Dorpsstraat 3, Capelle aan den IJssel

Open: Wed-Sun for lunch and dinner

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