Sunday, March 9, 2008


We had the loveliest afternoon in Leiden yesterday, thanks to Susan who showed us all around her gorgeous city. It was about time we met up, and she was the perfect guide. Leiden is such a pretty place, similar to Haarlem but with cosy narrow streets lined with interesting shops, stunning churches with ceilings as high as the eye can see, and a beautiful castle built in the 11th century. So much history to explore.

Susan is my foodie partner in crime so our first stop was her favourite cafe, Burgerzaken, for lunch in their adorable candlelit basement. Their specialties are interesting sandwiches and we each had a different type - all delicious and very filling. Of course, there was still room for a fresh stroopwafel during our walk through the markets afterwards. Warmed on the griddle, the thin wafel discs are glued together with soft caramel, bliss! We also tried some of Holland's favourite lolly, liquorice dropjes, including the salty kind which were our favourite, but still, can't say we are huge fans of liquorice!

From there, a walk around the city, through streets lined with old-style street lamps and these amazing old trees that look like they've been singed at the branches. Some of the buildings have poems on their outside walls, something I find really enchanting, including a beautiful poem from Russian poet Marina Tsvetajeva. The castle, De Burcht, is in such good condition and afforded stunning views of the city. Of course this is when my camera battery died.

Susan took us to her favourite Italian deli which had so many gems, least being guanciale, impossible to find and which I'll be posting about this week, and wild boar sausage, which I'll post about seperately too. then the Turkish supermarket for some yummy flat bread and those French yoghurts in glass jars I've been after for ages (you know I'm obsessed with glasses). A stop for a refreshing Wieckse witte beer with lemon before saying goodbye and hopping on the train home.

Susan surprised us with a very thoughtful gift, a Dutch cookbook! Thank you so much!



Mathilde said...

Glad to see you enjoyed our town!

la femme said...

looks and sounds beautiful.

Cookie said...

sounds like a lovely girl this Susan LMAO :-)

chimera said...

aw, 2 of my favorite bloggers meet up, and quelle surprise, eat well! glad you had a great time.