Since moving to The Hague over a decade ago, I (Darice) have become a bit of a foodie. I started sharing the places I eat at through my blog. But as the content has become outdated I created this one page to keep track of my go to places.
Here you’ll find places I go to regularly or semi-regularly in a year. Almost all these places are in the city center. I keep going to them because the food quality is consistent, the service is friendly and the price/quality is good. I know that the chances of being disappointed are small.
Filtro Specialty Coffee Bar
I’m not a coffee expert. I drink it a couple of times a week. But I do know when I’m drinking good coffee. And at Filtro you can get excellent coffee. They have sandwiches, bagels,salads and cakes. A selection of loose leaf tea and free water. That little detail does it for me. There is a table with tap water bottles. Grab one and keep hydrated while drinking awesome coffee. The owner and barista, Jack, is a very nice guy and the place has a relaxed vibe. The bagels are the best I have had in the Netherlands and the sandwiches are tasty and filling.
This little Lebanese manouche place is one of my regular go to places. My favorite is the cheese and spicy meat. Their fresh lemon juice is addictive and if you still have room try their Halawa sweet manouche.
When I want to sit down and have a healthy lunch with a cup of tea I go to Instock. At Instock they cook with rescued food so the ingredients are always different. My go to is the plank with soup, bread, salad, and other goodies. Instock rotates their menu regularly, you’ll never get bored eating there.
For me, Salsa Shop is the minimalist place to eat. Or if you have a difficult time making a choice. Their menu is pretty simple. Beef(2 kinds), chicken, pork or vegetarian. Taco, burrito, bowl or a salad. They all come with rice and black beans, plus toppings of your choice. There is a selection of hot sauce that I only tried once and was way too hot for me. I always opt for the roasted tomato sauce, which isn’t spicy. It’s worth noting that all the food is already a bit spicy, especially the barbacoa. The barbacoa is very spicy, too much for me. Which sucks because I really like stewed beef. If you want a healthy, fresh and affordable meal I suggest Salsa Shop.
Finally, a fast food joint where I eat almost guilty free. Five Guys also has a basic menu, which still leaves people wondering what they are going to eat. It’s pretty simple. Hamburger, cheeseburger, bacon burger, hotdog or grilled cheese sandwich. All one price/size each with your choice of toppings. Little fries or big fries, without salt, with salt or with cajun spice. One size drink, any kind, free refill, and milkshakes.
Let me start by saying that their little burger is a regular sized burger and their little fries can feed three people.
The great thing about Five Guys is that everything is fresh, they don’t use microwaves. Your burger patty is made on order, french fries are fresh cut from fresh potatoes, always from a different farmer. Beware: Five Guys is not for people with a peanuts allergy!
I finally caved to the poke bowl trend. I had tried a sushirrito before but wasn’t wowed by it. One day I didn’t want to cook, but didn’t want anything too unhealthy and still filling. I went to Ohana and tried their Heat Wave bowl, which is now my favorite. Crispy chicken with a good scoop of guacamole (and all the other toppings) with mayo/sriracha sauce. I always go with the small bowl which leaves me full. You can choose a bowl from the menu or create your own. Grab a pair of chopsticks and eat.
Opinions vary on which is the best restaurant in Chinatown. For me, it is Woeng Kee. Woeng Kee has a couple of dishes that are my go to, like honey and walnuts chicken or fried ravioli beef dim sum. They have an excellent fried rice which is hard to not eat all by yourself.
South of Houston
When it’s time for sitting down for wining and dining, my go-to place is South of Houston. They have a delicious mac and cheese side dish. Premium dry-aged beef, chicken, fish and options for vegetarians.It’s busy most nights, so make reservations.
This small Korean lunchroom is easy to miss. One day I finally decided to step inside and eat something there. I was not disappointed. It’s run by a Korean family. It’s like sitting in their living room while they cook a meal for you. I especially like their Kimchi pancake and the rice and bulgogi. You can only pay cash there.
Cencalli, La Casa del Maíz
This little Mexican place can be found in a side street next to Plein. I discovered it by happenstance before they opened. I went there as soon as they opened and have been there a couple of times since. They cook authentic Mexican food here. No tex mex or anything of that kind. They make their own corn tortillas from scratch which really ads to a good flavor. Last time I went I tried their specialty, tacos al pastor. They serve it on Friday nights and sometimes Saturday. Keep an eye on their Facebook page or give them a call. If you are a big eater, it’s going to cost something eating there. Best is to go with a group so you can taste everything. But quality and taste wise you can’t go wrong here.
Donuts & Co
The Hague now has its very own donuts shop with fresh made heavenly donuts every day. This is the kinda place I really need to do my best to resist because otherwise, I’ll be eating donuts all the time. It’s the gourmet version of donuts. From your basic vanilla glazed donuts to pistachio donuts and dulce de leche donuts. They also have a gluten free/vegan selection. They have several kinds, I haven’t tried them all yet. They go nicely with a good cup of tea or coffee.
I used to have a french fries addiction. It’s under control now. But when I get that craving I go to Frites Atelier. It’s a gourmet twist to french fries so don’t expect a snackbar experience here. My favorite is the meat stew. Which is so filling it substitutes for dinner.
You can’t go wrong at Walter Benedict. When I crave blueberry pancakes I take a 20 minutes walk just to eat one at Walter Benedict. They also have an awesome burger that is hard to resist. It’s always busy so make sure you make a reservation.
Hidden in the alley of The Passage, this small sandwich, salad and soup place can be found. Ideal for a quiet lunch or a built your own grilled cheese sandwich. Try their meat sandwich or veggie burger.
Living over 10 years in The Hague, there are more places I frequent on and off over the years.
That time you need a quick lunch, Dungelmann kroket is the best. Pair it with a smoothie from Smoothie Company. Rather have something else than beef kroket, something like a vegetarian truffle and mushroom kroket? Head over to Het Kroket Loket.
Is Frites Atelier too gourmet for your tastes? Try out BIK Frietwerk at Turfmarkt for french fries with hot cheese or with meatballs. Plenty of choice for meat eaters and vegetarians.
Craving some Indonesian rice table? Check out Istana, it’s a family favorite. Honorable mention to Pastis. A small French bistro. Always super busy, simple but excellent menu. One of my favorites that I seldom eat at. I should rectify that. My go to places have changed over the years. Now with so many food options, I tend to go less to the same places regularly. But these are the places I think of immediately if you ask me where to go to.