Facets of a Menu

We all have dinner outside. This can quickly be something from the Chinese or warung. But even if we have something to celebrate. In such cases, we usually feel loose and we reserve in a fancy restaurant. Suriname is internationally known for its good food. Most tourists give considerable credit for the good food here. But also, the locals love it very much. You will notice this especially if there is something to celebrate, there’s always food!

In this section, we will discuss the different facets of the restaurants in a light way in each edition.
I can still remember the first time I walked into a fancy restaurant. You have no idea what to expect, you get a menu in hand and you do not know where to start, what and how to order.

Fortunately, there are waiters that are able to guide and advise you. A good waiter will see upon entering if a guest walks in the restaurant for the first time or if the guest has been there once before. One of the duties of a waiter is to ensure that a guest feels at ease. Usually he/she can assess what a guest likes. A waiter is there, except to deliver you a pleasant evening, also to answer your questions if you have one.


It is recommended to be the first to ask about the special of the day. This special is not on the standard menu. In some restaurants, there is a special board where they are listed.

So, what is really a special?

A special is a dish that is usually fresh, interesting and new, where the cook put in a lot of time and energy, because he has faith in it.

Of course, that does not mean that the special appeals to you, but you do not want to order all the same. That’s not a disaster. As a guest, you are not obliged to choose the special, you are free to choose from anything else menu.

Traditionally, you visit the chic restaurants for a three-course meal. No, it’s not that you must to walk through three corridors first. As a guest, you order food three types dishes, which are served throughout the entire evening. Typically, a three-course menu from: (1) entry, (2) main course and (3) desert.

You are not required as a guest to order all three courses. You may only order a main course, but you may also opt for a main course and dessert. If you’re not a big eater, you may also feel you just want order a combination of different starters (appetizers). In some restaurants, you may be offered an amuse, an amuse is a tiny bite which you receive of the “house”. This is free.

The starters are usually the nicer dishes, main dishes are larger in volume. Starters are more refined.
In subsequent editions, we will highlight why you pay much more in more upscale restaurants than a simple Chinese restaurant. We will also look deeper into the menu, including the appetizers. Which types of starters are there and what you often find on the menu.

~published in Victuals Magazine: First Edition; written by Chantal Rijker~