Usually I give restaurants a minute to get their sea legs before I dine there (and I typically avoid soft openings), but I was so excited about the much-anticipated Indo-Dutch restaurant on Commercial Street that I gathered up my family for a Saturday night dinner just a couple of days after Van Gogh’s Eeterie (334 E. Commercial St., Springfield, 417-344-0085) opened.
The place was absolutely packed, and every table looked full. Clearly we were not the only people who were champing at the bit to try this place! Luckily, the bright and airy space didn’t feel cramped, and we enjoyed the energy of the other diners around us.
My husband, Eli, and my kids, Oliver and Eloise, were my dinner buddies that night, and we started our meal with the cheese dip made with Edam cheese and brandy. The brandy flavor was so subtle we could hardly detect it, but it lent a bit of depth to that bowl of hot, melted cheese.
I ordered the Braised Beef Hutspot, a dish that starts with a base of mashed potatoes made with carrots and sautéed onions that is then topped with tender, slow-cooked beef. It was the definition of comfort food, and I enjoyed every bite. But I found myself wishing I’d ordered something a bit more adventurous.