A little over a month ago I found myself in Amsterdam and as part of my birthday present, my lovely boyfriend took me to try out a new trend ‘Dining in the Dark’. This is pretty much what it says on the tin, you go to a restaurant and eat your meal, but in complete darkness. It was a truly unique experience that forced me to rely on my other senses. I had never before realised how much I “eat with my eyes”, and simple things like pouring a glass of water, manoeuvring food from my plate to my mouth and knowing how much was left on my plate became a real challenge.
We opted for Ctaste, which is by the Amstel river and conveniently has on-street parking right outside. When we arrived we sat in their well-lit lounge and someone explained (in perfect English for those that don’t speak Dutch) what was going to happen and what we should expect from the experienced. They also checked that we had no allergies or food preferences as we had opted for the mystery menu.
Then it was time to head into the darkness. The waiters are all visually impaired, and as we were led to our table I could see why as I don’t think anyone else could do this job. It was completely pitch black, so much so that throughout the whole meal my eyes did not adjust to the light at all. It was a very surreal experience as I could hear people on other tables around me, but I had no idea how big the room was or how many tables there were in total.
We had several courses and it was great fun trying to guess what the food was. Most of the meals were made up of lots of elements, so there was plenty to taste, which made the whole experience much more fun. My favourite – as always – was the dessert and we even had a sort of dessert appetiser prior to eating our actual dessert, which was in my opinion the most delicious thing we tried.
The whole experience lasted about two hours and when it was time to leave I was definitely ready to see the light again. Overall the experience was interesting and I would definitely recommend it, but having said that I don’t think I will be doing it again for a while.