Where have I been for the last week? Well in Amsterdam of course! Not the most traditional Greek Easter place, but stunning nonetheless. It was my third time and I have to say that every time I visit I love it more and more. It is such a humane, chilled-out place, with loads of young people and nice little places everywhere! I actually think that if the weather was a bit better, I could easily live there…
Anyway, I was lucky to have very good tips form people living in Amsterdam, mainly old university friend M., who is a great gourmand, M. who is local and loves the good life, and Simone, Dutch blogger friend and food photographer, who was kind enough to send me some addresses too. Of course we also discovered nice places ourselves as we walked around for a week!
Below I give you some of the places that really stood out from the rest and they are a good bet whether you are a tourist or a local:
Greenwoods ( Singel 103, +31206237071 open 09:30 – 19:00 daily), does high tea, fresh sandwiches and great English breakfast, which is the best remedy for a hangover in case you didn’t know! If the weather is good, sit outside and watch the boats on the canal go by. The soda bread 9and cakes of course) is homemade and to-die-for.
Burger Meester: I need a good burger once in a while and as we were wondering around the streets we spotted this place, mainly because people were seating outside. Then I realised they were having these massive burgers and salads and we had to go. What a great place to eat! Home-made bread, juicy burger and you can get a lovely breadless version with a salad. No alcohol served, but great juices, so this place is perfect for lunch. Also, all the sides are healthy, so no fries!
Goodies: having a good sandwich is very difficult, but I have to say I was impressed by this place. It is very cute inside and conveniently situated in one of the nine streets. When the weather is nice, it is worth sitting outside. The portions are huge, the presentation delicious and all the ingredients really fresh. Special mention has to be made to the bread, which is as soft, crunchy and tasty as a sandwich needs. It gets packed so be prepared!
La Place: conveniently situated on Kalverstraat (entrance also on Rokin Street), this food hall on the ground floor is a fantastic place to get a salad, a soup, a juice, a sandwich, noodles, you name it! The choice is endless. With such a central location, low prices and a fantastic view on the canal, it is hard to beat. Perfect pit stop from shopping or sightseeing.
Gartine: old-ladies chic is back and the popularity of this place just proves it. You can get high tea here (the whole shebang with scones, sandwiches etc.), or just a slice of home-made cake. It is conveniently situated off Kalvestraat in case your sugars are low after shopping!
Stout: Haarlemmerstraat 73, phone: 020 616 36 64): uber-trendy place in the Jordaan, with large beds outside that you can recline, if of course you ever find them empty! One of the best epresso’s I had. They do light lunch too.
Cafe Loetje : One of the juiciest (and cheapest) fillet steaks I have ever had. Lovely high-ceilinged pub-like place, an Amsterdam institution actually, full of local clientele, close to the Rejiksmuseum. Nothing fancy here, just salad, fries and steak of course! Actually, there is more on the menu, but everyone was ordering these three, so we went with the flow. Paid 27 euro with wine!
Sahid Jaya: I love Indonesian food and Amsterdam is a really good place to have it. This restaurant is conveniently situated on Reguliersdwarsstraat, so you can get a nice cocktail afterwards at Arc. The food was excellent and worth the 50 euro with drinks.
Red: this beautiful restaurant with a fine view of the canal and trendy-chic decoration has the smallest menu you’ve ever seen: lobster, fillet or both! They come with fries (dutch style with mayo of course) and a salad. I always go for the combo which is a fillet steak and half a lobster. Paid with wine 45 euro, which for the whole package is not bad at all!
Arc: lounge bar/ cocktail bar Arc is an Amsterdam institution. If you like trendy people and good cocktails this is the place for you. It is conveniently situated on Reguliersdwarsstraat which is filled with restaurants, so you can easily wander there after dinner.
Harry’s Bar: small cocktail bar with no connections to the famous bar in Venice, it makes fantastic cocktails and has a great atmosphere. Bustling with life it is a good choice in the city centre.
Wynand Fockink: great rustic little place tucked away in a small alley next to the hotel on Dam square. You can try a million different types of their own liquers and of course Jenevre, the Dutch gin. Open from 3-9pm, it is usually filled with locals having an afternoon tipple.