In today’s ‘Maastricht Guide’ I am going to show you a very unique hotspot in town: Bijzonder. The name literally translates to ‘special’ in Dutch, which is the perfect way to describe this healthy and organic restaurant. End your day of endless shopping in Maastricht at Bijzonder and let your taste buds do all the work.
Bijzonder is located in one of my favourite areas in Maastricht, namely Sint Pieter. The area is known for it’s characteristic buildings and lots of greenery. Start your day at ‘Bijzonder’ with a good cup of coffee and breakfast before going on a hike at the famous ‘Sint Pietersberg’, which is only a 5 minutes walk from the restaurant.
6212 ET Maastricht
So let’s talk more about this unique concept. The word ‘Bijzonder’ is a Dutch word for special, extraordinary, which describes their meals perfectly. They focus on healthy, organic and homemade food that is free from refined sugars and is mostly plant based. It’s very vegan and vegetarian friendly, but they also serve a small selection of meat and fish. Besides that they also focus on food sharing, which is something I am very fond of. I am one of those people who can’t just chose one dish, so having more smaller dishes is the perfect setting for me.
They advice you to chose 2 dishes per person, but you can always order more as you go. The dishes are starter-sizes. This gives you the opportunity of trying a lot of tastes at the same time, so make sure you bring someone that loves sharing food too! I brought my (photographer) friend Lieke with me and we ended up sharing 6 dishes (dessert included) and I can guarantee we were pretty satisfied afterwards. So let’s talk about the food, shall we?
Upon arrival, we were kindly welcomed by the lovely owner of Bijzonder Dimitra. She told us more about the restaurant, the concept and the experience we were about to have. We started off with some oat cappuccinos out on the terrace. In front of the restaurant they have some cosy spots where you can sit down while enjoying a good cup of coffee. It is the perfect start to your dinner, plus the view from the restaurant is amazing. You get to watch the people heading out to the Sint Pietersberg, strolling around the streets or heading out to the city center.
After coffee comes food, so we headed back inside to enjoy the first meal. First up: homemade crackers topped with a bean spread and some homemade lemonade on the side. Only looking at the dish I could tell that the food is made with a lot of love and care, which you can definitely taste!
The second dish was a cold pea soup with cream. I never had pea soup before, so I had no clue what to expect. But damn, this is good! It tastes very fresh, healthy and creamy: a perfect combination in my opinion. We then went on to the third dish, which was grilled eggplant with miso caramel, tahini and pickled ginger. I am a big fan of all of these ingredients and this was probably my favourite dish from the evening. It was served with a summery salad on the side.
The benefit of eating more healthy and organic based foods is that you don’t feel as stuffed afterwards. Which definitely worked in our advantage, because after finishing the fourth dish it was time for our last main dish: steamed cod with pea puree and a fennel orange salad. At this point it was also finally clearing up outside so we decided to move outside onto the terrace to enjoy the meal here.
The outside reminded me a bit of France with all the colourful decors, pink tables and bohemian details. The ambience outside is just as good as the inside, because it made me feel as if I was sitting at an idillic French square. The steamed pod was equally tasteful as the other dishes. This was also the point where my friend and I were starting to feel pretty full, so sharing 4-5 servings is definitely a good recommendation.
However, I always have a separate stomach for dessert and coffee which is exactly what we needed at this point. After enjoying the outside terrace for a bit, we headed back inside for our final meal: dessert! It was getting a bit chilly outside so sitting back in with a latte and cake is a perfect way to end the evening.
So… let’s talk dessert. We got a trio of different kind of desserts: two vegan cheesecakes, gluten-free banana bread and a sample of their vegan chocolate pie. It. was. a. lot, but oh so good. Especially with an oat latte on the side.
All in all it was an amazing, extraordinary, experience that I would definitely recommend to anyone who enjoys good food in an unique ambience. A huge thank you to Bijzonder for inviting me, the experience, the tasteful food and for the amazing hospitality.
Are you hungry after reading this blogpost? No worries, I got you. In collaboration with Bijzonder I get to give away a €50,- giftcard so you and a friend can enjoy a special dinner here! Head over to my Instagram page to see all the details on how to win.
Pictures made by me and Lieke Vroomen
*Disclaimer: in return for this blogpost my friend and I were offered a complimentary dinner at Bijzonder and two giftcards. I am not being paid to write about them. All opinions expressed in this post are, like always, completely my own.