Kick-off of Local Heroes project in Block C

Hotelschool The Hague supports and works closely with local food suppliers at the restaurant concepts within its campuses. From beekeepers and cow producers to farmers based in Amsterdam and surrounding areas, HTH wants to bring students in direct contact with local suppliers while showcasing the latter; this is how the project “Local Heroes” was born last year. In acquainting local producers with our students, we have organised lunches, dinners, workshops and talks at the heroes' locations. Successful activities have already been organized at Kesbeke pickles, Schulp fruit juices, and Koppert Cress micro vegetables.

In the last block, we kicked-off the latest edition of the project with a visit to Boeren van Amstel, the new local dairy brand in La Mangerie (Amsterdam campus). Our students organised a lunch and an activity at the Polderzicht farm in Ouderkerk aan de Amstel. The company consists of eighteen farmers who are passionate about their profession, love nature, and do their best to preserve the greenery close to Amsterdam.

Six students from Phase 2 hosted a lunch in the middle of a barn between the cows of the Polderzicht farm. The setting created a unique and authentic atmosphere for the guests to experience. The lunch consisted of five courses that incorporated products from the Boeren van Amstel brand and Dutch seasonal ‘root vegetables’. The first course was a beetroot carpaccio with house-made ricotta, followed by a leek potato soup with hand-plucked ramson oil. The roasted carrot in edible dirt was a standout dish, and was followed by flammkuchen with asparagus. The last course of the lunch was sweet rhubarb tartlets.

During the event, the students encouraged the guests to participate in their own butter-shaking session. Conversation starters regarding the importance of local produce and farmers’ challenges were placed on the table. These were decorated with handpicked herbs which brought the element of nature to the lunch. As the guests enjoyed house-made flammkuchen, Mr. de Vos took the opportunity to inform them about different herbs and their culinary uses. By picking their own herbs from the table decoration, the lunch experience was further enhanced with a personal touch. Everyone agreed that the lunch was an overall success, and we are hoping more events for the ‘Local Heroes’ project will be planned in the future.