Don your Stetson and your best cowboy boots, it’s time for a hoedown. One of a rather different sort, than I expect you are imagining. Sure, this is an all-American experience, but the hoedown part is that of food!
This is where we take a trip to Hoender en Hop and experience the real way to eat chicken, American style. Positioned on the corner of the trendy and bustling, Grote Maarkt in The Hague. Hoender en Hop will take you into another world as you step inside this vintage, chic, American style bar.
Take your pick from a range of different seating. Towards the front, you will find high, long wooden tables with bar stools, at the rear a more traditional style of leather armchairs and tables. Dimmed lighting, candles, country and western music, invites you to an authentic American dining experience.
So let’s get comfy and see what’s on offer. Spit Roasted Chicken, is the feature dish, served au naturel, with sage and lemon, or flavoured with piri-piri. Organic fries, apple mousse, and coleslaw finish the dish that comes served on a bread board. From the charcoal oven, should you not fancy chicken, you can taste spicy pork ribs, farm bred Berkshire sausages, or a number of blackboard specials, which change daily. On my visit, the specials were the Wagyu beef burger, duck breast, and flaming steak, just to name a few.
Hoender and Hop cater for lunches between 11am and 4pm, and dinner between 4pm and 11pm. During the day, you can choose from sandwiches, with various fillings — hot pulled chicken, farmer’s cheese, roasted ham with truffle mayonnaise, and egg salad with leeks. Salads are available, as well as a selection of smaller snacks, and plates to share.
The organic fries are served cooked to perfection with their jackets on, which give them a lovely rustic flavour, served in a white paper cone – they are worth the calories!
With the food selection needing time for some serious consideration, it’s time to look at the drinks menu. Red, rose and white wines, cocktails including a whisky sour and a wide range of bourbons, rums, gins, whiskeys, bottled and tap beers, and fritz-kola, which is a naturally flavoured cola drink high in caffeine. Flavours such as apple, cherry, and elderberry, cloudy sparking apple, orange mandarin, and lemon and melon. If that isn’t enough choice, you can also have tea or coffee.
The desserts, should you have room, are limited to a choice of three, but what choices they are! Blueberry cheesecake, homemade patisserie, or roasted pineapple, marshmallows, and rum soaked raisins — the later is what I am going back to try next time!
Hoender en Hop also has a blue room, a private function room that caters for parties, meetings, and any other private functions. It’s situated on the first floor with uninterrupted views across the Grote Markt.
The chicken at Hoender en Hop is sourced from a farm in France, which, has acclaim to the red label (label rouge), meaning it is superior to other chicken. It is fed on 100% plant based products and roams freely.
Friendly and unhurried service. I whiled away a couple of hours on a cold November afternoon. As the sun streamed in the door, reflecting off the stone paved flooring, the music gently playing in the background, sipping on my glass of white wine, I did feel as if I had entered another world. Far away from the bustling shops of The Hague. I am sure to return as soon as I have some spare time on my hands; maybe I will see you there.