Twisted Tries: Europe's most expensive pancakes worth £85

saved! saved!
editable template (82).jpg

We can all agree that a fat stack of American pancakes is one of the world's purest pleasures.

There's just something intensely comforting about a fluffy, spongy pancake (or four), used to mop up maple syrup or whatever else you wanna slather on them.

But what's the most you'd be willing to spend on a plateful? What if we told you there's a restaurant in Amsterdam selling a portion of pancakes for a whopping €100 (£85)? Even die hard pancake lovers would probably wince, right?

It might sound outlandish, but Moak pancakes’ offering is more than just your standard stack. They come laced with 22 karat gold leaf, ruby chocolate and saffron pistachio ice cream, on a Versace plate, no less.  

Moak pancakes' Golddigger is worth 85 quid - but is it worth it? (Credit: Twisted)

Now, we know what you’re thinking... is this a case of style over substance, or are Europe's most pricy pancakes actually worth the cash? Would all that swankiness be enough to make an €100 pancake order worth it? 

Conveniently, Twisted's Editor, Joanna, had a trip to Amsterdam in the diary, so, she stopped by to suss them out.

Twisted Tries... the most expensive pancakes in Europe

Moak pancakes' website warns that they don't accept bookings, 'even if your name is Kim or Kanye.'

It's a shame, really, as they'd probably both fork out €100 for pancakes on a Versace plate without a second thought.

On the other hand, it certainly wasn't every day I found myself heading for a brunch valued at more than my five course dinner I'd splurged on the night before. In fact, come to think of it, they were probably worth more than a flight to the Netherlands.

I should clarify that Moak do lots of ordinary pancakes, too, topped with blueberries, chocolate and the like – and at a perfectly affordable price. 

Moak's less expensive pancakes (Credit: Moak)

However, this particular pancake stack is far from ordinary, and they make no bones about it. Dubbed The Golddigger, there's no doubt this menu item is meant to spark conversation, and even debate. 

Even its name is designed to be showy and unapologetic, but would it live up to its bragging rights? 

The Golddigger experience

My first impression as I walked into Moak is that it’s actually a pretty casual pancake joint. 

It looks like so many of the Instagrammable cafes you'd see in London, with neon lights and an abundance of foliage. Perfectly pleasant, but not the sort of spot you'd expect to be flogging anything overly ostentatious.

‘Perhaps that’s the thrill of it, though?’ I thought to myself. Ordering the most expensive item at an otherwise unpretentious spot somehow feels more of a statement than going somewhere posh in the first place. 

For some absurd reason, my friends and I decided we'd grab a couple of traditional pancakes to share too, just to get the full Moak experience.

We went for a the Nutty By Nature (Dutch goat cheese, granola, King Medjoul dates, honey) and the Mancake (bacon, cheddar cheese, grilled onion and Canadian maple syrup) which, while delicious, were totally unnecessary given what was coming. 

The champers landed on our table first (Credit: Twisted)

Whilst the rest of the restaurant chomped happily on their normal pancakes, our Golddigger experience begun. 

First, we were rather lavishly presented with a flute of Luc Belaire Rosé Champagne each, prompting a few befuddled looks from diners around us, who were no doubt scanning the menu to see if they’d missed the booze section. 

They hadn’t seen anything yet, though. Then landed the main event – a big stack of extravagance, if you ever did see one.

To give you a better picture, the dish is comprised of three blueberry pancakes, and comes topped with edible flowers, a pistachio crumble and a secret recipe saffron pistachio ice cream, alongside the aforementioned natural ruby melted chocolate, and 22-karat gold leaves.

The pancakes are finished with fresh fruit like raspberries, a drizzle of maple syrup and a hefty slice of caramelised pineapple. But it doesn't stop there – oh, no! Not only are they served on a Versace plate but there's even golden Versace cutlery to eat it with. 

The gold plated pancakes in all their glory (Credit: Twisted)

Phew, anyone else feel poorer just reading all that?

As others looked over inquisitively, I must admit, there was something quite enjoyable about receiving the most flamboyant order in the room. Each Moak branch only has one Versace plate, knife and fork, because obviously this is a rare and special order. 

Yes, a self deprecating part of me wanted to explain away the OTT order to anyone who glanced in our direction, but another part resolved to own it, like anybody making such a purchase undoubtedly would. 

The taste test

I’ll reserve my judgement on the price for a second, because it has to be said these pancakes were far more than just a mass of expensive ingredients. 

As someone who doesn't have a sweet tooth, I was expecting to take one bite and be overwhelmed, but they weren’t too sweet or too heavy. The rich, creamy ruby chocolate tasted almost floral, and was really pleasantly offset by the fresh berries, maple syrup and the sugary pineapple.

The pancakes were slightly wholemeal, whilst still light and fluffy, giving the whole thing an earthy complexity. 

Tucking in, already (Credit: Twisted)

And the craftsmanship had to be admired, too. Far from just a puddle of millennial pink, the ruby chocolate also formed into a hard dome which housed the ice cream and concealed the pineapple round, meaning that each bite felt like you were digging for treasure, and uncovering a new layer of deliciousness.

There were a few components that were naturally just for dramatic effect, such as the gold and the edible flowers (and all the Versace for that matter). 

But what I concluded from the whole experience was that ordering The Golddigger pancake was about so much more than just the flavour. 

It was about being a bit – read, very – audacious, sipping Champagne at 11am on a Friday morning and feeling the thrill of curious eyes burning in your direction. 

The verdict 

Before I visited, I asked Moak’s founder, Sten, how often people order The Golddigger, and, to my surprise, he said pretty regularly. 

“All different types of guests order them, whether they have birthdays to celebrate, just bought a house together or have just become a mum and dad,” he told me. “It’s not something you do every day, but marks a special time in your life.”

As tasty as these pancakes were, I’m still of the mind that I’d never spend that much on a brunch dish, however lavishly prepared. However, saying that, after trying them, I kind of got why some people would.

Moak's founder Sten with his pricy pancakes (Credit: Twisted)

In a social media world, a €100 pancake stack is a way of screaming from the rooftops that you’re doing something special, not just to those around you but to the hundreds on your Instagram, too. 

Salt Bae has launched a restaurant empire off the same premise, selling gold-leaf brushed steaks at 10 times the price point of Moak’s pancakes, and while there are many who scoff at such a purchase, his popularity shows a demand that can’t be ignored.

You see, people splash out in different ways - be it a night on the town, a designer handbag or a pricey bottle of wine - and what really makes one extravagant purchase any more justified than another? 

There are many who would consider a fine dining tasting menu a colossal waste of cash, and while I don’t personally agree, it just goes to show that a frivolous spend is ultimately in the eye of the beholder. 

At the price point its selling for, the Golddigger isn’t going to be for everyone, that’s for sure. But honestly? I think that Moak have been pretty clever. 

Every raised eyebrow is encouraging someone else to ponder, ‘why the hell not?’ – and if that sounds like the sort of flashy purchase you can get behind, then ‘why the hell not’ indeed?

Featured image: Moak pancakes/ Twisted