De Librije – changes without betraying
Chef Patron Jonnie Boer is a game changer without ever planning it. He simply follows his instinct and cooks what he believes is delicious food. Jonnie Boer had seasonal menus with local produce many years before it became the trend it is today. It was obvious for Chef Boer to use the locally handpicked mushrooms instead of buying them from a producer far away, and it might sound obvious today, but in the nineteen eighties this was something few others did. The years have become decades, but Jonnie Boer still develops himself and his concept without ever betraying the pure flavours and authentic nature of his produce.
You will find De Librije around 90 minutes drive from Amsterdam in the old picturesque city of Zwolle. The restaurant’s name De Librije translates as the library and there is where you will find the main dining room – in a library located in a Dominican convent. The style of the restaurant is a perfect mix of old and contemporary and if you do not feel for sitting in the ambient main dining room, you can also have your meal in the basement at “The kitchen table” or upstairs in the big private dining salon. And cross the canal and you can have your beauty sleep in Chef Patron Jonnie Boer’s and his wife’s, Thérèse, prison-rebuilt hotel after your amazing dinner.
Thérèse Boer is more than the Lady of the House who invites every guest as if they were her close friends, she is also a highly competent sommelier responsible for the amazing wine menu. You will have an impressive and not too common selection of great wines at your disposal so make sure to choose carefully because you will be tempted to order in many more bottles than you can drink.
Jonnie Boer started his culinary career at De Librije already in 1986 as an apprentice and after a small detour around his home country he was soon back at De Librije again. Jonnie and Thérèse met at De Librije and in 1992 they were able to buy the whole restaurant from its previous owners. Today the original flagship restaurant has been joined by other restaurants, a cooking school and a hotel operation so times are certainly good for the Boer family and that is no surprise considering the amazing achievement they have accomplished together.
Chef Boer has a huge emphasis on local produce and his innovative cooking works perfect with the delicious ingredients from the region nearby. Jonnie Boer is a down-to-earth person with a big sense of humour and warmth added to his distinct and perfectly executed cuisine. De Librije is a must visit restaurant over and over again.
De Librije scored 92 points of 100 points in our rating system. View our Top 60 of the world. Back to the reviews.
Published: March 16, 2012
8011 TW Zwolle
Phone: +31 38 42 12 083