Amazing food abroad: Madame Janette’s, Aruba

27 Jul

Ask anyone where to eat in Aruba, and Madame Janette’s will likely be on the list. It’s not a place you need to try once if you take a trip to Aruba…. You’ll want to go back a second time. (Yes, we did go twice, during our 8-day trip to Aruba. They were perfect as our first and last dinners on the island).

Madame Janette's - bread and pickled onionsFrom the high-rise hotels in Palm Beach, Madame Janette’s is only a 10-minute taxi ride away. The restaurant’s large patio, lit up with strings of coloured lights, glows in the middle of a quiet residential area. The atmosphere is amazing whether you’re sitting out on the terrace under the lights around the little gazebo where a guitarist plays all evening, or on the covered deck area around the terrace.

Each meal kicks off with a basket of soft garlicky bread, served with garlic butter and pickled onions. Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of the bread basket – this is really yummy bread!

Madame Janette's - Hungarian Goulash SoupHungarian Goulash Soup

Madame Janette's - Kasi’s ChorizosKasi’s Chorizos 

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Above: Madame’s Termidor Gratin – chunks of lobster and shrimp gratinated with spinach and Gouda cheese. It’s definitely one of the heavier appetizers, but great for sharing.

Another big draw at Madame Janette’s is the extensive beer list – at least sixty bottles, about half of which are Belgian beers. Whether you want a Belgian Trappist beer, a German wiessbier, the original Czech Budvar, or something from San Francisco, Madame Janette’s has it, and serves it with the proper glass.

Below: The Old Butcher Steak – cooked to a perfect medium-rare as my husband requested. The almond mashed potatoes on top were a terrific twist.

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Madame Janette's - Almond crusted grouper

At $29, the almond-crusted grouper filet is one of the least expensive entrees on the menu, but it’s a delicious signature dish. The very generous portion of fish was perfectly cooked – flaky on the inside, but crispy on the outside, with sliced almonds all around.  The creamed spinach sauce complemented the fish terrifically. For my side dish I chose the potatoes gratin (since the menu called them “famous”). The were yummy, but definitely one of the greasier choices. On our return trip to Madame Janette’s, I chose the Dutch potatoes instead.

DSC00714The Prime Argentinian Center Cut Tenderloin – simply grilled to perfection. Here’s the inside:

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DSC00715The Filet Mignon “Gianni Versace” – a tenderloin cut in two halves, topped with spinach, chunks of lobster, and sliced Portobello mushrooms.

Madame Janette's - apple strudelDuring our first dinner at Madame Janette’s, we ordered the apple strudel for dessert. This was probably the weakest part of the meal – although it was packed with apples and raisins, the crust wasn’t very flaky enough. The layers seemed a bit stuck together and a tad chewy. So the next time, we got the molten chocolate cake instead, served with blueberry compote and pistachio ice cream.

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The Final Word: Whether it’s steak or seafood, Madame Janette’s does it perfectly. If you visit Aruba, this place is not to be missed! Be sure to make a reservation.

Food: 5/5 | Atmosphere: 5/5 | Value: 5/5

Info: Madame Janette’s, Cunucu Abou 37, Aruba, Dutch Caribbean

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4 Responses to “Amazing food abroad: Madame Janette’s, Aruba”

  1. Chef Kasi November 25, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

    Thanks for your nice review of our Restaurant .

    Hope to see you back soon !

    Greets

    Chef Kasi
    Madame Janette Aruba

    • Julie Green April 11, 2015 at 6:47 pm #

      Do you ever share recipes? I would love to make your Lobster Termidor Gratin. It is the best I have ever had!

  2. Anonymous November 25, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

    Loved it everything was delish

  3. Wayne Bragg April 18, 2017 at 12:12 pm #

    Do you share your receipe for the lovely pickled onions.

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