Koek + Koek Food Co. (pronounced Cuckoo / noun / informal: a mad person) didn’t announce its arrival with much fanfare six months ago. They wanted some credibility behind them before they shared how awesome they were. Well….now they’re ready.
Named after owner Nikki Hall’s Dutch Grandmother (who was NOT crazy), Koek + Koek drew its inspiration from European cafes and set out to recreate the vibe with affordably priced, delicious food and drink in a stylish, yet unpretentious, setting.
As a busy mother of four (who’s crazy now!), Nikki saw a need for a space with authentic, healthy fare made with care and imagination.
Doubling as a gourmet quick-serve health food establishment that transforms into a casual-chic bistro at night, the result is a winning dining experience. Throughout the day, guests can indulge in a variety of fast-fine food options from energy boosting toasts like ricotta with poached pear and honey or avocado with cherry tomatoes and pea sprouts, both on freshly baked seven grain bread ($5), to an Obi Wan Bulgogi Bowl with organic black rice, house-made kimchi, poached egg, broccolini, avocado, and Korean bbq beef. Salads rotate daily based on seasonality and chef whim. A medium salad for $8.50 might include your choice of curried cauliflower, kale caesar and rainbow beets.
By evening, the marketplace turns into a warm and welcoming restaurant with a selection of reasonably priced wine, inspired cocktails and delicious dinners. A Hot Buttered Italian will butter up any vegetarian with pureed parsnips, black beluga lentils, rapini and burrata ($16). The classic Dutch bar snack, Bitterballen, is paired with spicy mustard ($8) and best savoured with one of the craft beers.
But Koek + Koek is most proud of its Family Feeds Under Fifty. The inspiration behind it was that while many of us enjoy preparing and cooking meals for our families, it’s not always possible to pull it all off. Not willing to sacrifice the family meal bonding time or compromise on the food quality, Koek + Koek creates meals for families that are guilt free, nutritional and feed a family of four for under $50. Best of all, they only prepare 25 of the family meals a day to ensure quality and freshness.
In the restaurant, beautifully designed and built by Nikki herself, guests can lounge at individual tables or mix around the striking communal high top table. Measuring 12 feet long and 20 inches in diameter, it was crafted from a large maple tree that was kiln dried for weeks, with the bark painstakingly pin nailed back on and the massive log cradled by a steel saddle. Nikki can’t reveal the secret of the unique floor construction, but there’s a free glass of wine for anyone who can guess correctly!
Wearing many hats, Koek + Koek is a bit of an oddity, but it owns and celebrates its sweet brand of delicious madness. Cheers to crazy good fare!