A Saturday night arranged by friends who had discovered a coupon for Parels (€25 for 3 courses)– found us eating in a busy restaurant situation along the Oude Groenmarkt. Parels has an outdoor terrace, small bar and narrow inside section – and at a guess, is able to seat 100 guests. Service is provided by young staff with flipping ponytails and too much attitude.
Tuna sashimi: beautifully presented, with a sesame-dressed seaweed salad. Soya dipping sauce. Wasabi was missed – albeit needed to compliment this plate.
Carpaccio: this dutch restaurant standard was up to par.
Smoked Salmon Tartaar: Aesthetically pleasing, yet lacking in real flavour.
Prawn kebab: one kebab with eight marinated and grilled prawns. Served with salad (same as entrée salad decoration with extra leaves added) and fries. Delicious prawns.
Beef steak: with high expectations, this steak again proved that Dutch restaurants are poor competitors in the beef world!
Sole: served with salad and fries.
New York Cheesecake: served with red berries sauce and yogurt ice-cream.
Lemongrass and Coconut Parfait: looked beautiful but tasted like a cup of cream.
Scroppino: dessert drink – again missing flavour.
Overall: Very average dining experience. Staff a little sloppy. Male toilet unacceptably dirty. Food – nothing amazing. One bowl of fries as the stated accompaniment for three main meals was tight; salad re-hashed for mains was disappointing; steak substandard; desserts boring. Although the total experience was parallel to dining experiences offered at other restaurants along this busy strip, – and good value at €160 (including wine) for four people, Parels can not be recommended for anyone seeking looking for a gustatory treat. http://www.parelshaarlem.nl/