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“Best dining in Haarlem” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Restaurant ML

Restaurant ML
Kleine Houtstraat 70, 2011 Haarlem, The Netherlands
023 - 534 53 43
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Ranked #53 of 216 Restaurants in Haarlem
Cuisines: French, International, European
Restaurant details
Moscow, Russia
Top Contributor
84 reviews 84 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 58 cities Reviews in 58 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
“Best dining in Haarlem”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2014

I have had dinner here several times and it has always been a great experience. Nice ambiance in a historical building. Great food. Good service. An overall pleasing experience.

  • Visited January 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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52 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    28
    13
    7
    2
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Haarlem, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
161 reviews 161 reviews
125 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
108 helpful votes 108 helpful votes
“Reasonable but not outstanding”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2014

We had long wanted to try this restaurant as it had a star and was also a JRE member. We had eaten in other JRE restaurants and found the price quality ratio to be high. We took the opportunity to go during one of the many Dinner Weeks that take place. This meant we had three courses for 40 Euros a head. The restaurant itself is reasonably spacious , set on a number of levels which the waiting staff brought to our attention warning us of each step. An incantation repeated to every diner who passed the table, it became a little intrusive. Table was large for two people with crisp white cloths. There was a menu on the table advising us we could add dishes to the the 3 course option. Neither of us liked the sound of the extra course and passed on the idea of extending. We were instantly offered a drink and requested some water and the wine list . Whilst we didnt ask for it , we did hear one table ask for tap water and be refused, which given the amount charged for the food was a little off. The prices were, as one might expect in a starred restaurant, quite high with quite ordinary wines being 30- 40 per bottle and we decided to opt for a wine pairing to go with the food. This worked out at 7.75 per glass. The wines were somewhat unimpressve. We were given no opportunity to taste them and more effort seemed to go in telling us about the wine and its character etc. We were given three different amuse-bouches. All served at the same time. One was a consomme of zebra tomato juice and a tomato was placed on the table to show what we were eating. The staff were courteous, but a little too 'busy' . Observing other tables they seemed to lean across guests to serve, a little too much. Perhaps it was our table position but they seemed to spend there whole time moving past us. They also took away my side plate including buttered bread without asking if I had finished. The food was reasonable but nothing special. I had vegetarian and my partner had a fish starter and meat main. The starter was fairly non descript. It looked pleasant but didnt linger long in the memory. The main course which included different treatments of mushrooms and carrots served with a carrot jus was again nice but nothing special. I missed any form of wow factor and there were no standout flavours on the plate. My partner reported the same for her dish. The dessert was a lemon tart with honey icecream. I quite enjoyed it although my partner, for whom lemon tart is a favourite dish was underwhelmed. It took us some time to attract the staff's attention to get the bill. Overall we were disappointed. It wasn't a bad experience but not one that stood comparison to other restaurants in Haarlem such as Fris. Perhaps we caught it on a bad night.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Haarlem, The Netherlands
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Who gave ML a star?”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2013

High quality ingredients and pleasant surroundings were let down by third rate service. Waiters seemed intent on galloping noisily around while barking at foreign guests (who actually speak Dutch -YES we do exist!!) in far from perfect English. This was exemplified by their insistence on calling the menu the card. Food was fussy and little effort was made to balance textures. Guests were actively discouraged from eating "A la Carte" and the amuse-bouche were brought before one had a chance to open let alone read the menu.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Haarlem, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
“The not so significant 1 star restaurant”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2013

I have been to several 1 star restaurants and I must say the experience (both food and service) with ML is the least favorable one. It's unusually hard to not impress me with amuses, and they did. The amuses were not impressive and they were not even memorable. I had recently also been to De Bord'eau in Amsterdam and was blown away immediately by their amuses to being with.

We were at Restaurant ML for 4 course lunch. My husband had booked again at the Bord'eau because of the very good experience we had a month ago but I suggested to try Restaurant ML since it's more convenient and I like to check out the restaurant in the city where we live.

In general, the food was not impressive, not special nor well thought out. In every dishes we could point out the "out of the tune" ingredient or the not contributing to the taste but only looking good concentrated puree of some veg/element...

My husband had the wine pairing. Usually the waiter would offer tasting before pouring the full glass but they did not. One of the wine was completely out of the pairing possibility but was served. He sent it back and they gave him a full chardonnay which was good for drinking but nor well paired with the dish.

The service was very average. We are not fuss but for a 1 star restaurant, we expect it to be properly 1 star. Few times the young waiter had remove plates (or his arm) over my husband's head, it was a bit sloppy.

I feel oblige to compare this experience with my recent experience with De Bord'eau (both 1 star, visited in less than 40 days), Bord'eau wins hands down from Amuses, main courses, service and wine pairing. They both have similar pricing for lunch.

Verdict - Will not return base on this experience. Will rather spend my money at Bord'eau anytime.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brussels, Belgium
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Perfect dinner”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

We went here with 18 family members to celebrate a special occasion and took a 4-course menu, which was delicious. We had a separate room for us at the 1st floor, this is very comfortable.
Service was just perfect, could not be better. The waitress anticipated all our needs, came very politely with practical questions / suggestions on how to organize the dinner regarding speeches, kids menus etc.
Prior contacts per email were very efficient and quick answers.
The food was exceptional, light portions with delicious food. We took the white housewine, from Chile, which was fine, and a Portuguese red wine which was quite good without being too expensive. Water and soft drinks were unfortunately overpriced, this is the only inconvenience we had.
I highly recommend this place, you will not be disappointed.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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