Amsterdam possesses a charm quite like no other city, with those beautiful quaint houses, so much green, and those canals pervading the entire centre. But during our stay there just a few weeks ago we liked it in De Oude Pijp best of all.
Just south of the central canal rings and right next to the Museumsplein, the residential area is known for its high density of bars, cafés, restaurants and the odd coffee shop. M and I ended up spending half our time there, feasting and drinking and enjoying every last bit of it. Here are a few of my favorite spots.
Stop here for scrumptious breakfast/brunch
I’ve had many good breakfasts/brunch meals in my time, but seldom was it ever quite as delicious as at Bakers & Roasters! It’s on par with hot breakfast Phở in Saigon, Bavarian Weißwurst-Frühstück in München or fresh pastries in Paris. In short, Bakers & Roasters is sublime!
Located in a street branching off the Marie Heinekenplein behind the old Heineken brewery, the New Zealand-style breakfast spot is popular among locals and tourists alike. M and I beat the crowds just in time and were seated within five minutes at a shared table in the back of the place. We got the French Toast, the Navajo Eggs with extra spinach and a chocolate milkshake. Service is very friendly and remarkably fast. Our food came within just ten or fifteen minutes. And thus we digged in.
French Toast? More like sweet, fluffy banana bread with delicious banana jam and two strips of perfectly crispy bacon on top. The poached eggs were executed perfectly, the pulled pork was savory with just a hint of spice, the bread both crunchy and airy, and the milkshake silken, smooth and fantastically flavorful! I liked that everything at Bakers & Roasters is top notch whether in terms of flavors, textures or freshness. 100% can recommend!
Bakers & Roasters
Eerste Jacob van Campenstraat 54
1072 BH Amsterdam
A variety of snacks for lunch
For lunch, I recommend strolling through the Albert Cuyp Market for some browsing, shopping, and snacks, such as traditional Broodje haring or crispy Churros. Or try Burgermeester for three mini burgers of your choice. Even better: check out both.
The Albert Cuyp Market is open every day of the week until about 5 pm. Vendors there sell anything from sneakers and drugstore articles to local and foreign food. Prices there are said to be among the cheapest in Amsterdam. It’s a nice place to stroll through and observe the bustle.
Albert Cuyp Market
And then when you walk westwards until after the market ends, at some point you’ll come upon Burgermeester.
Burgermeester itself is rather unassuming and the interior functional. Guests dine in red American 60s diner booth seatings along the wall opposite the open kitchen. M and I install ourselves in the back, and order three mini burgers for sharing.
Curiously, Burgermeester does not offer french fries, which I think is a shame. Still, if it’s burgers you want, you’ll not leave disappointed.
The meat is well done and they use a hard crust bread variety which can be a minus sometimes but here it is not. Their most noticeable feature, however, is the well-balanced composition of toppings, which, in contrast to many other places, have kept their distinct and fresh flavors, but also blend together quite nicely. This makes for burgers each very different from the other, but refreshingly without the over-use of distracting sauce. Do try it for yourself!
Albert Cuypstraat 48
1072 CV Amsterdam
Perfect modern-day dinner
Sharing your dishes is a vital feature of Asian food culture, and I think it’s a wonderful concept. Not really because I like sharing my food per se, (M can attest to that,) but because it allows for more variety at the table.
Dishes and plates meant for sharing are also Bar Boca’s selling point, and as I said, I love the concept. But Bar Boca’s does not serve Asian, nor does it exactly serve tapas. I think their assortment of food can best be circumscribed as modern European.
M and I share a cheese plate for two accompanied by steak tartare and a foie gras burger while we enjoy our meal with a few Belgian beers. Other select choices from the menu include lasagna, fish, nachos and Dutch bitterballen among others.
There are two Bar Boca’s in Amsterdam, by the way: one is in Jordaan and the other in De Pijp right next to the Sarphatipark. Naturally, we went to the latter where service was swift and very friendly. Thumbs up from us!
1072 PA Amsterdam
Other things to do in De Oude Pijp
Buying extra ripe Dutch cheeses for souvenirs and taking a canal tour through the city are two of my must-dos in Amsterdam! Other things to do in De Oude Pijp specifically is the Heineken Experience, an interactive tour with beer tasting in the former Heineken brewery, and taking a stroll through the small but invariably beautiful Sarphatipark. I think the highlight of De Oude Pijp is the bars and cafés and the restaurants, though. It’s the perfect area to live and meet friends in. Although on my next visit, I also want to explore Jordaan and De Negen Straatjes more thoroughly too! See more pictures from our trip here.
Anyone have more insider tips for Amsterdam? I’d love to hear, so please leave a comment!