When I lived in Utrecht for half a year, there were a couple of restaurants, coffees and bars that I absolutely loved and whenever I am back I make sure to take time to visit at least some of them. So here’s my top 10 list of favorite restaurants to go to in Utrecht:
1. Walden Bar Restaurant:
It’s the perfect restaurant for dining out on a small budget, with wonderful lunch meals (mostly typically Dutch sandwiches) for 6 or 7 Euros and tasty three course dinner meals for just 15! As a student it was an absolut must. The restaurant is quite dark and cosy with good music and in summer there’s a huge area to sit outside right next to the Dom Tower.
2. Restaurant Wilhelminapark:
This is Utrecht fine dining at its best in a wonderful atmosphere, my tipp if you like to treat yourself for a special occasion. The menu changes seasonally and the food is delicipud and beautifully plated. I recommend spending and evening here in summer, when you cam sit outside in the midst of Whilhelmina Park with a view of the small lake and fountain. Reservation needed.
3. Teahouse Rhijnauwen:
Located a couple of miles outside of Utrecht in the forest and with a huge space to sit outside right next to a small canal, this restaurant is really quite picturesque. It was my perfect weekend brunch location, a beautiful Sunday ride with your fizzen (bicycle) and the promise of tasty Dutch Pancakes, which are very unlike American pancakes, indeed more like Pancake based Pizzas with both sweet and/or savory toppings.
4. Restaurant Blauw:
This is absolutely the best Indonesian restaurant I have ever been to. If you want to eat yourself through fantastic tasting platterns (which I highly recommend) of all the delicious things this restaurant has to offer, make sure to make a reservation beforehand!
5. Kafé Belgïe:
This pub is well-know for one thing and one thing only: Beer, Beer, Beer… With over 200 different kinds of beer to choose from, all served in the appropriate glass, it’s worth spending some time in the little space. But be warned, word got around, so it might be wise to get there a little before rush hour if you can, just to make sure you get a place to sit and drink yourself through the menu.
6. Café Tilt!
A perfect place for a casual night out, with a small variety of daily meals but also always a good place to visit for some drinks in the sun – and maybe some Bitterballen or other Dutch fried Bar snacks. They also have some noard games at hand for rainy afternoon with friends. At night they sometiles pair their drinks with live music and the whole place turns into a lovely, casual nightlife place.
7. Ethiopian Restaurant Sunshine:
Want to eat with your hands and have some delicious homemade honey wine? This is the place to go! It looks like nothing much if you pass by, but once you enter the small little restaurant, it feels like you are in another place entirely. The staff is friendly and will help you get what you never knew you always wanted. I recommend maki g a reservation, the number of tables is limited.
8. Parkcafé Buiten:
This gorgeous little café is located right outside of Wilhelmina Park and serves wonderful coffee and teas and a small variety of daily meals at a good price. It’s a nice place to drop by and take a break while exploring the outskirts of Utrecht and the lovely little Whilhelmina Park.
9. Café Olivier:
This is not so much of an inside tip but rather a classic tourist stoo, but it really is worth a visit. Built within an old Cathedral, this Bar-Restaurant makes quite an impression. As they also serve wonderful and well-prepared Dutch food paired with the mandatory Belgian Beer variety, this is a good place to stop by for dinner, lunch or just a quick afternoon bite.
10. Grand Café Lebowski
This is on the list because of its very particular vibe and very “out there” decoration. It’s the perfect place to go out for a drink, marvel at the life-sized (and probably real?) giraffe and enjoy your White Russian – I mean, what else, right?