Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Around Schiphol

After our delicious snack at Vlaamse Frites, we walked around other parts of the Schiphol "mall" including the grocery store. I love grocery stores. Visiting grocery stores on vacation is something I love to do - to see the different products, brands, foods that are important to the local culture. Here, at the airport store, I expected to see drinks, sandwiches to go, or other things that people might bring on board.

The first thing that caught our eye was the stroopwafels. A stroopwafel is made from two thin cookie-like waffles with a caramel-like filling. Gouda, in the Netherlands, is the home to the stroopwafel. In our trip preparation, one of the day trips we were considering was Gouda & Utrecht, on which we were definitely going to look for stroopwafels. (Spoiler: we never made it on the day trip, since there was so much to see in Amsterdam!) I was looking forward to trying them for the first time but didn't want to buy them just yet.

The second thing that I noticed was how much "real" food there was. Food that you wouldn't just take to go or take on a plane. Lots of cheese. Raw meat. Frozen foods. Premade meals that needed to be microwaved. I loved looking at all of it, but wondered who was buying it. They also had premade sandwiches in boxes to go, but those were less exciting (other than putting my Dutch food vocabulary studies to work).

The chips were also really interesting, mostly because of the different flavors. There were lots of snack foods in paprika flavor. (We made a mental note that we had to try paprika snacks before leaving.) But it wasn't just the paprika flavors that were different. Barbecue ham or bolognese flavored potato chips? Why don't we have these in all of our grocery stores?

Large sections of the store were devoted to drinks, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic. There were lots of orange drinks, including beer bottles and orange sodas. Heineken had orange designs. Orange and beer everywhere. We also saw Budweiser (not pictured) which was "Czech imported lager."

We had on our "to do" list for later that day to take a trip to the Albert Heijn supermarket after we checked in at our hotel so we could stock up on granola bars for breakfast and drinks. We didn't buy anything at the airport grocery store, but it was a fun and fascinating visit!

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