{travelogue} Seven Things You Should Eat in Amsterdam

Ah, Amsterdam. Perhaps you’ve come because the canals are picturesque, the folks whizzing by on bicycles are exhilirating, the museums are wondrous, and the design stores delightful… or maybe you just like drugs? Or are hardcore into tulips? No judgments here.

Whatever your reason, forget about all of that for a minute and focus on the food! If you find yourself in Amsterdam, here are seven special things you should seek out and shove down your gullet.

1. Apple Pie at Winkel Café: Pie for breakfast? Sure, why not. Get there early to enjoy this pie–more like a cross between a pie and a cake–or the Winkel Cafe may have lines out the door. Be sure to get it with cream on top and a cup of their wonderful coffee, too. It’s one of the best apple desserts I’ve ever tasted and the cafe is adorable and friendly. Winkel Cafe: Noordemarkt 43. website

2. Savory pancakes from Pancakes!: If you listened to me you had pie for breakfast so why not pancakes for dinner? (And yes, I am excited, but the exclamation point is actually part of the name of the restaurant.) This unassuming little joint serves up sweet and savory pancakes the size of a dinner plate, and of all the pancake houses in town, it’s my favorite for savory combinations like bacon, cheese, and onion. Pancakes!: Berenstraat 38. website

3. Hopjeswafel from Landskroon Bakery: Stroopwafels and their various incarnations abound in the Netherlands, but none can hold a candle to the honey and coffee caramel hopjeswafel from Landskroon Bakery. The teeny corner shop turns out crispy, light cookie disks filled with irresistible caramel. If you share one, I bet you’ll opt for a second. Landskroon: corner of Singel and Heisteeg. 

4. Frites from Vlaams Friteshuis: It wouldn’t be a visit to Amsterdam without frites from a window or street stall, and in my case that means like three times a day, minimum. I’ve tried the rest, now try the best – and I say Vlaams are the best. For the record, lots of people agree with me. Be careful because there’s a phony Vlaams nearby that’s trying to trick you into thinking it’s the real thing, so check the address before ordering to make sure you’re in the right spot. Vlaams: Voetboogstraat 33.

5. Cheese from Tromp Kasshuis: This marvelous cheese emporium has every kind of cheese you could ever want, plus freshly baked bread and pastries, baked right in front of you, to go with it. They’ll give you so many samples you’ll have a hard time deciding what to choose. But don’t worry, they’ll gladly vacuum pack any cheese you like so you can take it home on the plane with you. Tromp Kaashuis: Elandsgracht 27. Other locations too. website

6. Prix fixe menu at d’Vjiff Vlieghen: “The Five Flies” has been around so long (hundreds of years, in fact) that they call it a “culinary museum” – but the food is anything but outdated. The prix fixe menu is a reasonably good deal and offers local ingredients prepared in fresh and creative ways. D’Vjiff Vlieghen: Spuistraat 294-302. website

7. A beer at the Van Gogh Museum: OK, it’s not techincally eating, but it bears mentioning. Friday nights at the Van Gogh Museum are a way better option than checking out the art during the day. The museum stays open late every Friday, and boasts a cash bar, a DJ, and lots of great people watching. It’s a fun way to see the museum and mingle. And no, they don’t mention the ear. Van Gogh Museum: Paulus Potterstraat 7. website

What did I miss? What should I try next time I visit Amsterdam?

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