The next spring edition of Amsterdam Restaurantweek takes place March 2nd to 8th, 2009. I am torn about it. It’s a great idea but also has two serious flaws here in Amsterdam.

During Restaurantweek  more than 650 restaurants across the Netherlands offer a fixed price set lunch for € 20,- or a fixed price set dinner for € 25,-. The idea is to provide for an easy way for present and future foodies to try out new restaurants – especially the better and usually more expensive ones.

The first problem is that the majority of participating restaurants either lacks the required quality or has the wrong attitude. € 25,- plus drinks for a set dinner simply isn’t such a great deal at average restaurants such as Heerlijk. And then there are good restaurants that lower the quality of food and service beyond belief for restaurantweek. Klein Jansen is an example. Rather than promote their restaurant, they try to make a quick Euro.

Secondly, booking a table at a good restaurant is very hard. Reservations must be made through a special restaurantweek site. Reservations will open February 4th at 10am and many people will log in and bring the system down.

You can improve your chances of getting a table at a good restaurant by signing up for the Diningcity newsletter. Subscribers will be emailed a user name and password that will allow them to make reservations on February 2nd at 12pm.

And you should know which restaurants you want to make a reservation at. So check out the list of participating restaurants and decide up front where you want to go. Some interesting options in Amsterdam are Michelin decorated La Rive and Ron Blaauw or new and notoriously busy hot spot Momo.

dining city buzz restaurantweek 2009