AMSTERDAM

Thought you knew Amsterdam? Think again! This is our guide to the best restaurants and hidden gems of the Netherlands’ premier city.

CAFE BINNENVISSER

Café Binnenvisser, Bilderdijkstraat, Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands

A beautiful corner site with stained glass windows is home to Cafe Binnenvisser. Unlike many places in Amsterdam, it’s open seven days a week, which makes it a great choice for that tricky Monday night – it’s walk-in only unless you’re in a group of 5 or more, though you shouldn’t have trouble getting a table. On the menu, there’s natural wines, local craft beers, and a seasonal menu of veg-centric dishes.

DE MARK

Restaurant De Mark, Durgerdammerdijk, Amsterdam, Netherlands

One of our favourite new spots in Amsterdam, it’s well worth the short trip outside the city to eat at De Mark, particularly on a hot summer’s day or night. You could get a quick taxi but make the extra time to get the verry over to Noord and walk the rest of the way. Opening as part of a cute new boutique hotel, De Durgerdam, located in the pretty village of Durgerdam, De Mark has an amazing setting right on the water’s edge, with outdoor terrace seating on a pier extending out over the water. Even in winter, however, the main indoor restaurant is a beautiful space, a cosy living room set in a 17th-century house. On the menu, designed by Richard van Oostenbrugge and Thomas Groot, the chefs behind the two Michelin-starred 212,you’ll find locally sourced, seasonal meat, fish and vegetables cooked over a wood-fired grill, such as roasted leek with puffed grains and a hay gravy; Dutch haring with BBQ kohlrabi, horseradish, apple, and dill oil; and roasted beef bavette with green pepper and a salad of summer beans and herbs.

BUURTCAFE DE TROS

Buurtcafé De Tros, Linnaeusstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

This neighbourhood gem in the east of Amsterdam is near enough perfection. It’s a beautiful space with a bright, relaxed dining room and a large outdoor terrace, drawing a local crowd throughout the week (it’s only closed on Tuesdays). On the menu, there’s satisfying bistro fare – think thinly sliced rib-eye with balsamic mayonnaise, truffle pecorino, and apple capers; yellowtail kingfish, snow peas, gochujang, green pepper; and the quintessential Dutch snack, “bitterballen” – golden, deep-fried beef croquettes. There’s also a mean smash burger that pairs perfectly with the crisp new potatoes and a glass of chilled red from the list of natural wines.

CORNERSTORE

cornerstore, Papaverweg, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Cornerstore is a bar and restaurant from the Cafe Binnenvisser team with a heavy focus on music – the building used to be a studio among other things. The best seats are the high stools up at the counter in front of the DJ booth, with its vintage speakers and wall of records. From the kitchen there’s Asian-inspired small plates like green Sichuan mussels; aubergine, soy and macadamia; cold sesame noodles with kohlrabi; and lotus root pickles. And to drink there’s a list of sakes and excellent natural wines. Great food, drinks, and atmosphere make Cornerstore one of our Amsterdam faves.

BAK

BAK restaurant, Van Diemenstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Way out in the industrial west of Amsterdam you’ll find restaurant BAK, which started as a roving pop-up before going permanent in 2013. Set in an old warehouse, BAK is a beautiful spot, with sloped timber beam ceilings and windows overlooking the water and harbour below. It’s another set menu place (yes Amsterdam likes this set up, though BAK can claim to be one of the first to kickstart this in the city), with all produce coming from local farmers and fisherman. Dinner is Wednesday to Sunday and lunch is weekends only. This one should be high on your ‘Dam hitlist.

LOOF

loof, Bilderdijkstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

From the same team as Cafe Binnenvisser (and located right next door), Loof is a seriously good bakery. There’s incredible pastries, sandwiches, coffee, sourdough bread, a bookstore, and some lovely outdoor seating. Look out for epic specials like the sourdough croissant dough with scrambled egg and sheep’s cheese. YUM.

BREMAN BRASSERIE

Breman Brasserie, Oostelijke Handelskade, Amsterdam, Netherlands

On the ground floor of the brand new Hoxton, Lloyd hotel is the beautiful Breman Brasserie, a glamorous yet relaxed spot that takes inspiration from turn-of-the-century European and South American cuisine. For breakfast, there’s the likes of potato and onion latkes with fried eggs and a green goddess sauce, and croque madame with pastrami and reuben sauce, while for lunch and dinner there’s fish pie topped with fries, creme fraiche and Dutch caviar, plus fresh local seafood from the seven-seater raw bar. Before or after dinner, stop for a drink at the hotel’s Barbue, which has a menu of superb South American-inspired cocktails created by Tato Giovannoni, the founder of the world-renowned Floreria Atlantico in Buenos Aires.

BOTTLESHOP

Bottleshop, Wibautstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

One of our favourite Amsterdam wine bars, Bottleshop is situated in a pretty funky looking zebra-striped modern building on a busy street. There’s a handful of tables outside in summer and inside it’s all sleek minimal Scandi vibes. There’s a truly excellent line up of wines, including several bottles that are quite hard to find, and service is very welcoming and friendly. On the food menu, you’ll find dishes like duck rilletes, smoked eel, lamb sausage and turbot fillet

RIJKS

Rijks, Museumstraat, Amsterdam, Reino dos Países Baixos

The new restaurant at the RIJKS museum won a deserved Michelin star in 2016 but it’s still both affordable and relaxed, set in a beautiful light-filled room adjacent to the Rijksmuseum. From the €37.50 lunch menu, you can try stunning dishes such as puffed beetroot with dashi butter and tempura langoustine tail with curry cream.

VUURTORENEILAND

Vuurtoreneiland, Amsterdam, Netherlands

You might not find murder or burgers at the island restaurant Vuurtoreneiland but you will find a dining experience just like The Menu. Scoring a booking is harder than getting your hands on a Glasto ticket but if you managed to bag a table, just make sure you choose your dining partner wisely… The island, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is reachable only by boat ride from the east of Amsterdam, outside the new Hoxton Lloyd hotel. On arrival you’re treated to a tour of the tiny island, including the old military bunkers which were abandoned in the 1930s. These bunkers are where dinner is served during winter (note there’s no phone signal there) but if you visit in summer you’ll enjoy dinner in the Greenhouse. The Greenhouse looks out to sea and to the lighthouse, which is still operational to this day. Dinner consists of a six-course seasonal menu, featuring the likes of fresh bread with goat butter, a delicious tomato salad, opperdoezer potatoes with lardo, and a lamb sausage with lamb tartare, fennel and bell pepper. And then, all being well, it’s back on the boat for more drinks, arriving back to the mainland around 11pm. A totally unique experience that’s well worth making the effort for.

WILS

Restaurant Wils*, Stadionplein, Amsterdam, Netherlands

From the team behind Rijks is Wils, a relaxed Michelin-starred spot which opened in 2019. There’s a short a la carte menu but it’s best to go all in for the six-course tasting menu, with showstopping dishes such as hamachi (locally farmed in the Netherlands) with tomato and fig leaf; grilled romaine with lobster and strawberries; and roe deer with long pepper and a rich, deeply flavourful sauce. Don’t miss the excellent Dutch cheese selection at the end too! For something more casual, there’s also the Wils Bakery & Cafe on the ground floor.

DE WILLEM

de Willem, Haarlemmerplein, Amsterdam, Netherlands

One of the best restaurant settings in the centre of Amsterdam, De Willem is located in an old 19th century Neo Classical city gate. It provides a great backdrop to the seats on the outdoor waterside terrace and also beautiful interiors to the main restaurant and cafe spaces inside the old building. The restaurant serves a seasonal set menu for lunch and dinner, while the cafe has a more casual set up, with an a la carte menu of dishes like artichoke with ajo blanco, and gnocchi with fresh peas. Even if you’re not eating, it’s worth just popping in for a glass of wine at the beautiful circular marble-topped bar.

FORT NEGEN

Fort Negen, Jan Evertsenstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Some seriously good pastries are the reward for venturing out to Fort Negen, one of Amsterdam’s best bakeries. There’s freshly baked breads, cheese-stuffed croissants, regular special sweets, and excellent coffee – plus the totally OTT soft serve ice cream piled high into croissant cones. It may not be good for your waistline, but it’s definitely good for the ‘gram.

BAMBINO

BAMBINO, Vijzelgracht, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Bambino is a relaxed wine bar and bistro from the same team behind one of the city’s best restaurants, BAK. Bambino has a short a la carte menu (although you can also get a set five courses for €46) featuring dishes like white asparagus with sorrel and lovage, and the amazing deep fried coalfish nduja sando. There’s also top notch natural wines, coffee, and a decent bit of outdoor seating.

BAR DU CHAMPAGNE

Bar du Champagne, Rokin, Amsterdam, Netherlands

No prizes for guessing what this smart spot in the centre of Amsterdam specialises in; but what perhaps is a surprise, is how modern and relaxed Bar du Champagne is. There’s of course a huge selection of champagnes on offer (around 750 labels since you ask), including several by the glass, and a pitch perfect selection of small plates coming from the open kitchen. We loved the sardines on brioche, tomato salad, and ouef mayonaisse topped with caviar – all perfect accompaniments to a glass of fizz or two.

CHATEAU AMSTERDAM

Chateau Amsterdam, Johan van Hasseltweg, Amsterdam, Netherlands

In a huge warehouse building in Noord, you’ll find Chateau Amsterdam, the first and only urban winery in the Netherlands. Half the building is given over to industrial winemaking facilities, plus a small shop selling bottles to take away, and the other half is a lively restaurant and bar, where you can try the line up of wines with a few snacks, or settle in for the night for a full on dinner. There’s a surprisingly large selection of the winery’s own label bottles, including a pet nat, reds, and plenty of whites, all made on site from grapes sourced from around Europe. Well worth a visit.

DE KAS

De Kas, Kamerlingh Onneslaan, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Gert Jan Hageman set up De Kas in an old greenhouse building in the east of Amsterdam in 2001. It’s a beautiful setting surrounded by gardens from which he and his team grow up to 90% of the ingredients that make up the daily-changing menu, which unsurprisingly is largely vegetable focused. Don’t forget to ask for a tour of the gardens before or after eating, it’s a truly special spot.

BREDA

BREDA, Singel, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Our favourite restaurant in Amsterdam, Breda offers a selection of set menus at both lunch and dinner. You really just need to decide how hungry you are and they will do the rest, although for your first visit we definitely recommend going for the “All We’ve Got” menu at dinner. The food is reliably excellent, with a huge mix of styles ranging from BBQ to Japanese coming together in a coherent vision of deliciousness. It’s high-end cooking but the place is totally relaxed, with friendly service and great wines too. You could come for a midweek lunch on your own or with a group of 10 for your birthday and Breda will always deliver the goods.

HOTEL DE GOUDFAZANT

Hotel De Goudfazant, Aambeeldstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Don’t try and book a room here, but do definitely book a table at what is one of the best restaurants in Amsterdam Noord, the hipster district just over the water from central Amsterdam. Hotel de Goudfazant is right on the water in a huge old warehouse and serves up simple seasonal dishes and great wines. There’s also a take away menu if you want to grab a few bits and eat a picnic along the waterfront.

FC HYENA

FC Hyena, Aambeeldstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

It’s hard not to love FC Hyena, a boutique cinema in an old industrial building on the water’s edge in Noord. There’s two small screens showing new releases as well as classics, but even if you’re not watching a film, it’s worth coming over on a summer’s night just to eat and drink on the outside terrace. There’s big benches right by the water looking back to Amsterdam, good natural wines and ciders, and a menu of dishes cooked in the wood-fired grill, such as roasted aubergine with feta and za’atar and tahini.

OFICINA

Oficina, Jan van Galenstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Oficina is a daily canteen that’s attached to a food design studio founded by Zana Josipovic and Naiara Sabandar. It’s a small, smart, minimalist space serving pastries and coffee in the morning and a daily changing menu for lunch up until 5pm. On the menu you’ll find dishes like Creamy mushrooms and smoked aubergine on toast with a pickled kohlrabi salad; Bibimbap with Dutch grains, sweet corn, braised cabbage, daikon pickles, kale furikake, fried egg; and Almond frangipane tart with persimmon and fingerlime.

CAFE R. DE ROSA

R. de Rosa, Boomstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Only opened in June 2023, Cafe R. de Rosa has already become a hit in the Jordaan ‘hood – and that’s no surprise when you learn that a consortium of local residents actually took over the lease to create the kind of place they’d like to hang out in. It’s a beautiful corner site, offering great wines on tap and simple dishes made with local produce. There’s a great atmosphere and we especially love the outdoor tables in the summer months. It’s the kind of place everyone wishes they had at the end of the street.

BROUWERIJ ‘T IJ

Ingenieur Jakoba Mulderplein 148, 1018 MZ Amsterdam, Netherlands

A brewery and taproom in an old windmill? Only in Amsterdam. This brewery has been going since 1985 and although it’s now a bit of a tourist draw, it’s still worth stopping by for a beer or two – how often do you get to sink a pint in an old wooden windmill eh. The beers are brewed right on site so they’ll be fresh as anything and they’re mostly Belgian in style, so expect wheat, dubbel, and tripel beers and ales on offer – and the accompanying punchy alcohol content. There’s lots of seasonal specials and limited editions too.

RESTAURANT WATERGANG

Restaurant Watergang, Weteringstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Watergang is one of Amsterdam’s newest restaurants and we absolutely love it. First off, the place is totally charming; set in the bottom of an old house, it has the feel of a supperclub at your mate’s house rather than a restaurant. It’s a tiny room with just a few tables and has a creaky old ladder that leads up to another mezzanine table, and then the kitchen up top. It’s another tasting menu where you don’t know what the dishes are in advance, but for 46 euros it has to be one of the best value menus anywhere (the 35 euros extra for matching wines is a steal too).

BAKKERIJ MATER

Bakkerij Mater, Ceintuurbaan, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Another top Amsterdam bakery, Mater is located in De Pijp, one of Amsterdam’s best neighbourhoods. There’s sourdough bread made from regeneratively produced flour, banging pastries like the brioche filled with rose crème patissière & raspberry rhubarb compote, coffee, sandwiches, and even jams that are all made in house.

GEBR HARTERING

Gebr. Hartering, Peperstraat, Amsterdam, Netherlands

When the weather’s nice, Gebr Hartering is one of the most picturesque dinner settings in Amsterdam – tables are laid out on a little bridge by the restaurant overlooking the water. It’s worth going for this alone but luckily the food is also bang on, and the inside of the main restaurant is very nice too. There’s both a la carte and set menu options, with dishes raning from fresh oysters to big ribs of beef and Dutch cheeses.

CAFE-RESTAURANT AMSTERDAM

Café-Restaurant Amsterdam, Watertorenplein, Amsterdam, Netherlands

This Amsterdam institution is located in a beautiful 19th century pumping station out near Westerpark and has been open since 1996. It’s not the greatest food in the city but we love it’s vibe, especially on the weekend when it’s packed full of families celebrating. The food, mainly seafood and steaks, is still solid however and not too pricey, so you can tuck in to oysters, fresh prawns and the like without breaking the bank. It’s usually entirely free of tourists too, which is a blessing in the ‘Dam.

FOODHALLEN

Foodhallen, Bellamyplein, Amsterdam, Netherlands

This is an indoor market in the De Hallen cultural centre. Foodhallen is the place to go for the city’s best street-food vendors, serving everything from dim sum and fish to wood-fired pizzas and tacos.

PUCCINI BOMBONI

Puccini Bomboni, Singel, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Puccini Bomboni is the best chocolate shop in Amsterdam and is actually one of our favourites anywhere in the world. It sells incredible handmade chocolates, biscuits, spreads, and more. They don’t come cheap but are well worth a splurge. Look out for unusual flavours such as rhubarb, tea and tamarind. They also do a range of sugar-free chocs.

THE HOXTON, LLOYD

The Hoxton, Lloyd Amsterdam, Oostelijke Handelskade, Amsterdam, Netherlands

The Hoxton has a brand new spot in Amsterdam, having taken over the iconic Lloyd hotel and restored it in to a new 136 bedroom beauty in the Eastern Docklands. The building is an Accidentally-Wes-Anderson stunner with an amazing history, having been a shipping company headquarters, and a shelter for Jewish refugees fleeing persecution in the Second World War, amongst many other things. Many original features of the building remain with colourful tiled walls and floors and the central clock tower that now houses one very unique ‘Tower’ bedroom. You can expect the usual Hoxton great design across the whole property, plus lively public spaces such as Breman Brasserie (see above) and Barbue, a cocktail bar created in partnership with drinks legend Tato Giovanni.

THE HOXTON, AMSTERDAM

Herengracht 255, 1016 BJ Amsterdam, Netherlands

This is the first Hoxton outside of London and they’ve done an amazing job of converting what was once the home of the mayor way back in the 17th century into a beautiful 111 room hotel…the whole place is looking seriously swish. With rates starting at 89 Euros which includes free Wifi, water and a breakfast bag drop filled with local snacks, The Hoxton, Amsterdam is well worth checking out – you’d be a DAM fool not too.

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