Once upon a time, almost 100 years ago, there was a man in Rotterdam named Bertus den Haan who had a fish cart. When Bertus got older, his son Rinus took over, as did later his son Ruud. Ruud den Haan had not one, but two sons – twins named Robert and Christian, who knew from a very young age that one day, they too would take over. Sadly, Ruud passed away when the brothers were only 18 years old. The brothers did their best to keep the family business running, but it was too hard at such a young age, and they had to sell the shop.
But the call of the sea was strong in their veins and a year later they re-purchased the shop. Now, 15 years later, it is still called “Ruud den Haan”, in memory of their father. They run it together with the “third brother” Seth, their best friend. Fresh, frozen or baked fish, shellfish, seafood, fish salads and snacks, caviar – it’s all about the fish.
Although sometimes such exotic fish as sea parrot are on offer, there’s one fish that is above them all – the herring. The Dutch love the herring and the famous Haringtest of the Algemeen Dagblad newspaper was the ultimate prize in “herring country”. I say “was” because it was discontinued in 2017. Guess who the last winner was? Right – Ruud den Haan. I guess after that, they’ve concluded that the ultimate kings of herring were found and no further testing was needed.