A young couple recently decided to have a romantic dinner at McDonald’s in downtown Rotterdam. The manager was very relaxed about it and let the couple use the table cloth, candles, plates and utensils they brought with them. “It looked like a fancy picnic”.
Sure people stared and yes the manager snapped a picture for social media. You just know this is going to happen again somewhere soon.
Trying to smuggle alcohol into Saudi Arabia where it is illegal carries serious consequences if we believe the media. Smugglers have tried to disguise 48,000 cans of Heineken as Pepsi cola ones using crafty stickers. We could also flog the makers of Heineken, but that’s just a pipe dream.
Just this week an elderly British man living in Saudi Arabia was released from jail after spending one year in a cell for making homemade wine. More than 230,000 people had signed an online petition calling for the British Prime Minister to intervene to stop Mr Andree from facing 350 lashings, a punishment the man would probably not have survived after battling cancer and being asthmatic.
In the Netherlands, a song by Jaap Visser once told us that in fact ‘Heineken is a hard drug dealer’ and makes a great argument for banning it.
Heineken wrecks everything
Leidseplein, your marriage
Heineken is a hard drug dealer
The hospitals are full
With victims of alcohol
Heineken is a hard drug dealer
Don’t let yourself be cheated
Don’t let yourself be fooled
Heineken is a hard drug dealer
And if the stadium is violently destroyed
Heineken sits sanctimoniously at home
Counting his money
Trade union federation FNV said the aim of the stunt was to launch a petition calling for better working conditions in the food and hospitality industry.”The industry’s turnover has gone up for the eighth quarter in a row, but the personnel have not benefited,” the union said.
British furniture chain Seats and Sofas, which also has outlets in the Netherlands, got ‘pwnd’ with a ‘Trojan’ cake, and a song and dance. In the video below we learn that the company is well-know for advertising the price of a sofa and then in very small print adding instalments that makes the couch twice the advertised price, effectively misleading shoppers.
The Dutch and Belgian pranksters called both Dutch and Belgian shops to ask if the advertised price of 499 euro on a sofa was correct and both said yes, failing to mention the fine print story. And not reading the fine print is what bites this one shop in the arse in this video.
Although in Dunglish, the subtitles are enough to understand the prank that has been played on the furniture giant. And the video is a delight to watch: Seats and Sofas can’t be arsed to read fine print or read a situation for that matter.
Beer, broads and a bacon sandwich! Watch the video to hear more festive alliterations.
Someone recently told me that not a month goes by in the Netherlands without a food scandal and had collected a list of articles specifically about meat scandals over a period of two years: horse meat passed off as beef, bad fish, sick fattened chickens, and so on. And then there’s the fact that most good reasons to come to the Netherlands have absolutely nothing to do with food, which makes you wonder why the relationship with food here is not a happy marriage.
At an agri-food event like the World Expo Milan 2015 that showcases food from around the world and attracts a huge amount of visitors in its five month stint, you would want your country to put its best food forward. The Dutch pavilion at the expo was fined 3,000 euro by the Italians for serving rotten food that was improperly stored, which included dozens of kilos of rotten meat and bread that was stored in bin bags. That was someone’s idea of street food, which is a shame because the Netherlands has some decent street food at events.
Dutch fridges are often small, with four shelves and a freezer section big enough to store ice cubes and a frozen pizza. The same goes for having an actual oven, bath and separate clothes dryer: it’s not the norm.
For folks rich enough to own land that you can dig into and hip enough to grow their own fruit and vegetables, there’s the Groundfridge designed by Floris Schoonderbeek. It looks like the coolest bomb shelter ever, and uses the ground temperature for isolation insulation, keeping your community backyard garden food fresh at 10-12 degrees Celsius without electricity.
According to Schoonderbeek, winemakers have shown interest in having a Groundfridge, as well as people who build hurricane shelters and probably any big cheese fan. Check out the Dutch video with English subtitles, although they are too small for me, a bit like my fridge, although I do have an oven.
With jokes like ‘Please help yourself’ and ‘Better leave yourself a nice big tip’, chef Edwin Sander is getting ready to open up a restaurant called ‘Foodsy’ on 5 November in Amsterdam that won’t have any staff. Although English sounding, the name ‘Foodsy’ is a nod to the Dutch word ‘foetsie’, which means ‘gone, disappeared’ – like the staff.
We don’t have a clue what it means to go to a restaurant and do things yourself, but we do know what it is to stay home and do everything yourself, so why bother? Sounds like a reality TV show. The restaurant won’t take reservations, but function independently with instructions on how to cook things. It’s not making too much sense to the media, either. The main question is: will anybody be overseeing the people in the kitchen? Otherwise it’s a bit like breaking and entering, but then with food and a kitchen.
This summer I read an American article on how misogynistic craft brew names are putting off women and surely some men, as the men making the beer think it’s hip to appeal to men not by making good beer, but by trashing women as a gender to sell it. Hint: it’s not and you’re boring.
Two Dutch women from Noord-Brabant have gone viral brewing a beer called ‘kutbier’ (literally ‘cunt beer’), which has a different flavour of swearing than you might think. In any case, it’s not retarded enough to trash men or women as a gender to sell their beer.
‘Kut’ (‘cunt’), swear word used like ‘shit’, ‘damn’ or even ‘balls’ or ‘fuck’, but meaning ‘cunt’ and used constantly as a noun, adjective, adverb, etc. when you stub your toe or forget something important at home on your way to work. Since the New Kids films, the word is associated with the province of Noord-Brabant, but in the case of this beer, it’s alluding to the women brewing it.
Brewers Janneke Pieters and Mary-Jane Snelders of the Boegbeeld brewery in Den Bosch claim to brew an ode to the real Den Bosch woman. Their first run of 1000 bottles sold out in six days and has overwhelmed the pair. It’s a blond beer with prunes and some coriander seeds, which took them six months to perfect. In December they’ll be making more of it, which stands to be just as popular if not more.
Karl Kouki, a 25-year-old Bachelor’s student at the Radboud University in Nijmegen has crossed a pretty cool thing off his bucket list: getting an alcoholic drink with his name on it, called ‘koekie’ (probably pronounced ‘kooky’ rather than ‘cookie’, referring to his last name and his nickname). Kouki even used part of his student loan to finance the whole project, which started as a joke and has now unexpectedly become serious business.
Cut to quaint student café in Nijmegen where Kouki worked as a part-time barman on a shot called ‘koekie’ made up of vodka, caramel liqueur and a bit of butterscotch that become their most popular shot. Kouki says today the bottled version has nothing to do with that combination since he has learned that creating alcohol is not just throwing a few types of liqueur together in a bottle.
It also took him a while to find someone that could bottle small amounts of his shot drink, as well a lab to get the recipe right — after 25 tries koekie finally tasted like the way it was meant to taste. The bottle orders have been pouring in and right now supply can’t meet the demand: you can’t buy any in the West of the country yet. Koekie has an alcohol percentage of 14,7%, which is a bit stronger than wine, but Kouki explains that ’10 minutes later you can still taste it’.
Watch Dutch kids give their uncensored and blunt little opinions on breakfast foods from around the world. Some of the kids here have bad table manners meant to be cute, a friendly warning to anyone on the misophonia spectrum. And the amount of gel in the little boys hair is also a Dutch thing that nobody understands.
One boy thinks many types of breakfast come from the Philippines. One of the girls calls Vegemite on toast ‘a shit sandwich’ and seems to not have learnt to eat with utensils or have any kind of table manners. A few points go to the girl who enjoys Costa Rican rice and beans for breakfast.
Dutch children in this video eat chocolate sprinkles on toast for breakfast, which is junk food, so I hope their parents feed them real food otherwise, not just hair gel.