Springfield is officially going Dutch. Van Gogh’s Eeterie, Springfield’s first Dutch-inspired restaurant, is now open on historic Commercial Street. Van Gogh’s is the newest project from Joseph Gidman and his mother, Claire, who also own Commercial Street staples Chabom Teas & Spices and Café Cusco.
Van Gogh’s is a welcome addition to Springfield’s growing international dining scene, with a creative menu featuring light, innovative takes on Dutch and Indo-Dutch cuisine. Most notable is the extensive pannenkoeken menu, featuring several riffs on the hearty Dutch pancakes. Patrons can order sweet or savory toppings – or a combination of both. The Farm Near Auvres, for example, features goat cheese, apple, honey and thyme atop a hearty Dutch pancake that’s perfect for sharing.
Much like Café Cusco, the menu features accommodations for gluten-free, vegan and health-conscious guests. Many of the gluten-free dishes are inspired by Gidman’s experience with Indo-Dutch cuisine – like the vegan nasi goreng, which features Indonesian rice, banana, tofu, sweet soy and sambal alongside housemade veggie chips. Van Gogh’s also offers vegan cheeses and cashew butter made completely from scratch. Finally, health nuts can enjoy fizzy kombucha on tap, which Gidman says is a first for a Springfield restaurant.
According to Gidman, the menu was inspired by his own encounters with Dutch culture. “I had several good Dutch friends in college,” he explains. “I ended up following them to Holland to study abroad, and then I stayed to live and travel around Europe for a while.” He describes the restaurant as his way of sharing his fond memories through food and atmospheric touches – like the backpack from his time abroad, which hangs on a wall at Van Gogh’s.
Gidman worked with head chef Joe Duncan to craft a menu that communicated those fond memories. A longtime figure in the Springfield dining scene, Duncan has roots in eateries like McSalty’s and Civil Kitchen and recently designed the menu for downtown taco joint Tinga Tacos.
The restaurant is a welcome addition to Springfield’s historic Commercial Street district, which is experiencing major growth across the culinary and retail realms. “C-Street was never our first intention, but we’ve never once regretted it,” Gidman says. “There is a different mentality on the north side of Springfield, and I think everyone else in Springfield really underestimates that.”
Ultimately, Gidman is looking forward to treating guests at Van Gogh’s to an international experience. “This is an experience that will take our guests out of Springfield for a moment and give them that chance to experience another culture,” Gidman says. He feels strongly that the fresh concept will be welcome in Springfield’s increasingly adventurous dining scene. “Springfield is craving culture,” he says, pointing to a small note taped to the wall. It’s a welcome note written in Dutch, left anonymously on the window at Van Gogh’s. Gidman cracks a smile. “I think we’ll get it framed.”
Van Gogh's Eeterie is open for breakfast and lunch daily from 8am to 3pm and for dinner Wednesday through Saturday from 4 to 9pm.
Van Gogh's Eeterie, 334 E. Commercial St., Springfield, Missouri, vangoghseeterie.com