The Amsterdam in Rhinebeck…WELCOME to the neighborhood!!

The Amsterdam’s founders, Howard and  Chris Jacobs (a husband and wife team), along  with  Chef Sara Lukasiewicz, have created a stunning  restaurant built within an original 1798 Dutch townhouse.  The interior has been completely (and beautifully) transformed.

click photos below to enlarge

 

Howard and Chris have realized their dream of creating an idyllic neighborhood restaurant with the debut of  The Amsterdam (the name, as you might guess, pays tribute to Rhinebeck’s original Dutch settlers.)  It was hard to believe the restaurant had just opened a few days ago…it felt so complete and relaxed and welcoming.  Howard and Chris are a power couple…in the very best of ways.  They have an incredibly wonderful energy about them…totally charming and friendly yet focused and professional…there is no doubt they know what they’re doing and they’re doing it very well.

They’ve also hired a VERY charming and capable staff.  Every person, from Ryan (the “Guest Experience Manager”) who greeted us so warmly when we arrived…to our very likeable server…to the bartender…to the kitchen staff.  Right away this place had a great vibe and we knew immediately it was going to be a special evening!

Mike Cayea, Rhonda Cayea (Hammertown RB Manager), Howard and Chris Jacobs (standing behind me) and Bonnie Hundt to my left (Auntie M is the photographer).

 

I was totally taken by the Amsterdam on all levels.  First the food.  I have known Chef Sara for quite a few years…she is a star from the Culinary Institute with local roots.  I first met her when she took over as Executive Chef at the Red Devon where she received a James Beard Rising Star Chef nomination.

Her elevated farm-to-table fare is large in ambition and hyper-local in execution.  I have to say, here at The Amsterdam it seems like she has been given wings to fly with her extraordinary talent. The food is absolutely delicious and the menu is inventive while still being approachable.  There were 5 of us so we tried to get as many dishes as possible so we could share our impressions with you.

STARTERS

We shared 3 starters: Roasted Beet Salad; Confit Baby Carrots and since we know about Sara’s skills as a butcher AND chef we HAD to get the House Smoked Bacon.  Normally we should show photographs of the food here but this is all I could get…they were incredible!


ENTREES*

*dishes change with the season and availability
(click photos to enlarge)

Bonnie had Grilled Arctic Char served w/grilled asparagus, spring onions, fingerlings, green goddess

“From the moment we walked in there was an air of welcoming and excitement.  Everyone seemed so happy to see us. I wanted everything on the menu and that almost never happens. I can’t wait to go back.  The Grilled Arctic Char was phenomenal.”


Auntie M had a special…Slow Cooked Braised (?) Pork Shoulder served with housemade gnocchi and a mushroom sauce.

“Oh my gawd!! Truly fall-apart-melt-in-your-mouth-pork.  Kind of like pulled pork but even more flavorful and so moist.  The gnocchi was served in a deeply delicious mushroom sauce…this dish was totally off the chart. I wish it was on the menu so I could tell you what it actually was called. :)”


Mike chose the Mushroom and Farmer’s Cheese Cannelloni served with cherry tomatoes, asparagus, basil and mint almond pesto.

“I had the mushroom and farmer cheese cannelloni it was so incredible with the asparagus and tomato base as well as what ever special ingredients Chef Sara slipped into the mix that made it so special that I all but licked the plate…”


Rhonda Cayea (Hammertown Rhinebeck Manager who worked with Chris and Howard) had the Dry Aged Duck Breast with baby beets and greens, farro, rosemary-orange sea salt.

“Hands down the best dining experience I’ve had in a long time! The welcoming warmth of the staff and the beautiful overall look of the restaurant made us feel like we were home. The presentation of the food was perfect and all the different meals each of chose were delicious. Having been a part of one of the most beautiful stores in the Hudson Valley for 30 years has made me a bit critical of how something should look and feel but believe me, Amsterdam is THE place everyone will enjoy for dinner.  They’re also planning on being open late so after you see a movie in town you can grab a quick bite (when most other restaurants are winding down). Can’t wait to visit again! Chris and Howard are a wonderful team and they have created something very special!”


I had the Roast Chicken served with asparagus, herb spaetzle, gremolata, honey-dijon jus.

Someone once told me you can judge a chef by their Roast Chicken and let me tell you…Chef Sara Lukasiewicz proves with this chicken that she is a food star to be reckoned with!  Perfectly done…beautifully served…moist and savory.  I loved the spaetzle and the jus made it all come together.

 


DESSERT

We split the most delicious AND BEAUTIFUL slice of lemon tart (made by The Amsterdam’s own pastry chef) and some chocolate and salted caramel gelato.  BOTH UTTERLY AMAZING. And the best cappuccino ever!!


Now to the level of atmosphere and decor. I could be biased as Hammertown played a big part in the little details BUT I promise, I’m not.  I was so impressed with the way they used color, and the creative way they used the elements to decorate.  Architecturally they did an amazing renovation.  It is cool, it is hip, it is warm and inviting, and has an authentic soul. Not an easy achievement!

Howard and Chris have some amazing plans for (and have already started working on) a large outdoor space behind the restaurant…the property goes back quite far. Included will be a patio with seating for 24, an open firepit and a bocce court.  They’re hoping to be ready by Memorial Day…SO ARE WE!

 

 

Bravo to The Amsterdam…I’m in love ❤️ with you…the food, the spirit and the authenticity!  A welcome addition to Rhinebeck and the Hudson Valley.

THE AMSTERDAM
6380 Mill Street (Rt. 9)
Rhinebeck, New York 12572
845.516.5033

lovetheamsterdam.com

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