For the past several years I hosted an annual “Holland Day in Canada,” a completely made up holiday where I served up traditional Dutch foods to friends at my home in Toronto. What originally started as a bit of a lark — after all, who’s going to like kale mixed with mashed potatoes — was met with surprising enthusiasm. I continued to expand my repertoire every year, trying out new dishes from my home country and delighting in the fact that they translated to Canadian palates. So much so that I thought, “If my friends like this food, maybe other Torontonians will too.” In February 2014, I decided to find out.
Every Sunday afternoon from 1-6 p.m. you can find me and my wonderful fiancee Alison Broverman serving up traditional Dutch fare at The Ossington bar (61 Ossington Avenue). Known for its rowdy reputation on weekend nights, the bar is transformed into a cozy and relaxed environment — gezellig, as the Dutch say — where people can enjoy such Dutch treats as krokets, poffertjes, frikandellen, and even some not-so-Dutch variations such as our Reuben bitterballen (our take on the sandwich classic in ball form). It’s become the perfect place to spend a Sunday afternoon and enjoy a few drinks and snacks while catching up with friends.
It’s our hope to continue reuniting Dutch expats with their beloved national cuisine while introducing Toronto to the nosh of the Netherlands for many years to come. Tot gauw!