The Leidseplein area is famous for a wide range of entertainment and dining options. Most of the restaurants seem to be clones of each other, with little to differentiate the various ethnic places, especially the Italian ones.
Ristorante Rimini is unique in that it offers pretty much the same fare as most other Italian eateries in the area, but boasts pizza and pasta dishes at about half the price of other restaurants. This was such an unusual claim, especially for Amsterdam, I had to give it a try.
The interior is typical of Italian places in the district, with tacky plastic grape vines hanging from the ceiling (good dust collectors!), and the same dreary murals on the walls that you see everywhere. I really wish these places would do something to update this very dated 70s decor. Please! It's almost as if every Italian restaurant in Amsterdam was designed by the same sad (but successful) plastic merchant. At least in the Rimini, my expectations for something different were minimal.
I ordered a pizza funghi (with cheese & mushrooms) and I wasn't disappointed. While it wasn't the best pizza in the area, it equalled most others. It was huge covering the entire platter. The only faults I could find was perhaps just a little less of each ingredient. A little less cheese, fewer mushrooms (although there certainly was enough), and a slightly thinner crust.
Also the mushrooms caused the pizza to be a little wet, but this is the most common problem with mushroom pizza I've had over the years. If only the Italians would figure out that sauteeing the shrooms (in butter & garlic would be nice!) before hand will cause less moisture to bleed from the mushies onto the pizza. So I'm not faulting Rimini for that, just trying to pass on some pizza wisdom to those who are too set in the old ways.
I washed my pizza down with a small heineken, and the tab came to 6.20 Euros. Not bad for a tasty dinner around the Leidseplein. While the cheapest pizzas started at 3.50 or so, the most expensive pizzas were around 5 Euros. Definitely cheap by Amsterdam standards, but I'd hesitate to say they're half price, as you can get a basic Margherita pizza for under 5 Euros in most places. I figure they check the most expensive place, and half that restaurant's prices.
You'll have to walk a bit farther to get the deal as the Rimini is at the edge of the restaurant district. No doubt that's why they have the half price gimmick to get people to walk past a dozen other Italian restaurants along the way. It's also very popular with young Dutch people looking to save a few Euros, so it might be crowed on weekends. If you're looking for cheap eats around the Leidseplein, check out Rimini!
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-05-16 17:45:29 My Score: Great place to eat when you want more food for less money. The place is ful with student and young people. Enjoy!
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-02-08 16:49:11 My Score: The restaurant was okay for the money the staff were a bit "off" with us as there was a mix up with the wine order. From that point on the attitude towards us was poor.
Posted by Anonymous on 2005-04-04 22:31:50 My Score: Good pizza, a very low price!
Posted by Nik on 2005-03-10 14:00:48 My Score: good food, but the phone nr seems incorrect. does anybody know the correct nr?
Posted by Anonymous on 2004-05-07 16:11:55 My Score: pizza is lekker, ja toch?
Posted by Anonymous on 2003-03-28 10:57:17 My Score: Very good food, friendly service and very cheap
Posted by Anonymous on 2003-02-22 06:50:48 My Score: Great value for a meal. All the other restaurants seemed empty...I guess that everyone was here!