Yesterday we searched this site for Rotterdam restaurant recommendations, but found very little. We called in help from friends to find a nice place for dinner. We'll try to post our findings to help future Rotterdam visitors. :)
Vis aan de Maas
Rotterdam's biggest attraction is the harbor, Europe's largest trading port. So fresh fish seemed like a logical draw. In that regard Vis aan de Maas did not disappoint.
The location is perfect, in the historic Delfshaven area of Rotterdam, overlooking the river. If you're feeling adventurous you could even arrive by water taxi from other spots on the harbor. For the less adventurous, there's parking directly in front of the restaurant, free after 6 p.m.
The atmosphere was intimate and cozy (gezellig, as they say in Dutch). On the walls, historic pictures of the Holland-America line that carried so many Dutch immigrants to New York share space with super-modern art pieces. The service was laid back, friendly, and unobtrusive.
The menu is not extensive, and completely fish-dominated. We started with two types of prawns. The tempura-battered prawns with teriyaki sauce were delicious. The Spanish prawns were good but not spectacular-- they were slightly undercooked and lacking depth of flavor. The Sole came cooked in butter to a lovely crisp. The grilled Sea Bass was soft and rich, literally falling off the bone, and smothered in fried cloves of garlic. Both accompanied by generous portions of roasted vegetables and potatoes (fries with the Sole and gratin with the Sea Bass). The crema catalana for dessert was okay but didn't stand out. The sorbet on the other hand was so good we had seconds!
The wine list was not long but seemed well-selected, with a good variety. We had a nice Austrian gruner veltliner, which we haven't seen on a lot of lists in this part of Europe.
In total for bread, three courses, and a bottle of wine we spent about 140 euros. Not cheap but reasonable considering the quality of the fish and the location.