Top 7 lunchrooms in Amsterdam
Lunch may not be the most important meal of the day but there’s no reason to skip it, especially when you’re in Amsterdam. Lunchrooms in the city often feature cosy terraces overlooking the canals with tiny tables and great service — and they don’t mind if you linger a while! Take a seat and have a beer or two at one of these top lunchrooms in Amsterdam.
1. New York Film Academy Café
Damrak 213, city centre
New York was once New Amsterdam, so it’s only fair that there’s a little bit of the Big Apple in the Netherlands. The New York Film Academy Café mixes the roaring 20s of New York with the former Schipperscafé in the historic Beurs van Berlage — it’s a history buff’s dream! The café is bustling at lunchtime, with business people, tourists and students coming together to work, eat and socialise. The menu is full of American snacks and dishes that reflect the cuisine of the US: pulled pork, hot dogs and burgers, bagels topped with smoked salmon and crab cakes are all American favourites that you can enjoy from the heart of Amsterdam.
2. Tassenmuseum Hendrikje
Herengracht 573, city centre
The Museum of Bags and Purses houses a collection of over 5,000 purses, bags, suitcases and accessories dating back to the 16th century, as well as a restaurant that’s every bit as sophisticated as the museum’s collection itself. The museum restaurant has two elegantly decorated “period rooms”, which feature original 17th- and 18th-century painted ceilings and complementary décor, that serve a choice of lunch or high tea. The Fashion High Tea menu was designed especially for fashion lovers, with a three-course menu that features sweet treats shaped after the museum’s most prized items. If you’re not in the mood for tea, you can also choose to dine à la carte and grab coffee instead.
3. Wilde Westen
Bos en Lommerplantsoen 1, Bos en Lommer
A project of Moma&Co, Wilde Westen is a restaurant inside the old GAK building for neighbours and strangers to meet and for business people to connect. Flexible workspaces, offices and meeting rooms in the building are all available to rent by freelancers and businesses, and you’ll often find these renters in the restaurant chowing down on one of Wilde Westen’s wood-fired pizzas. The lunch menu features lots of sandwiches (caprese, smoked salmon, and tuna for example), big salads and weekly specials. Head over on Monday or Thursday for half-price or €8 pizzas, or stop by on Wednesday for special burgers and beer.
4. Bistro Bij Ons
Prinsengracht 287, Jordaan
You’ll become part of the family when you visit Bistro Bij Ons. A true Dutch café serving up traditional dishes, Bistro Bij Ons makes sure all guests are full and happy when they leave (after a few hours, of course). Sandwiches such as the BLTC (bacon, lettuce, tomato and cheese) and egg dishes including the popular uitsmijter (fried eggs on bread with bacon and cheese) are popular options, but the very hungry can always opt for the heartier menu items: stamppot with sausage or steak and fries. As for drinks, they’ve got plenty — in addition to beer, Bistro Bij Ons makes 20 different flavours of its own line of liqueur.
5. Cafe Zouk
Eerste Constantijn Huygensstraat 45, Oud-West
Park your bike at Café Zouk and take a seat at one of the many outdoor tables (the café has got a surprising amount of space!) for a quick bite to eat before heading to the nearby Rijksmuseum and Vondelpark. The café is modest both in style and service, with unpretentious but delicious food. At lunchtime, busy businesspeople can try the “Laptop Lunch”, consisting of a sandwich, coffee and orange juice. Those not in such a rush can sit down to enjoy the Zouk Burger or the pizza of the week, accompanied by one of the lunchroom’s fresh juices or shakes.
6. Library 'Or'
Oudezijds Voorburgwal 197, city centre
Located in the lobby of the Sofitel Legend the Grand Amsterdam, Library ‘Or’ truly exemplifies grandeur. Guests will enjoy the architecture and décor — rich colours, plush armchairs and a roaring fireplace — just as much as they will the food. Curl up next to the fire with a book and a cup of tea and croissant, or plan an afternoon tea with friends. Served daily between 03:00 and 05:00, afternoon tea is an elegant affair consisting of a selection of crostini, scones and clotted cream, and pastries with coffee and tea — champagne is optional, but adds a touch more class to the already- fashionable experience.
7. Restaurant Stedelijk
Museumplein 10, Oud-Zuid
After viewing the contemporary and modern art at the Stedelijk Museum, sit down for lunch in the museum’s restaurant — but you don’t have to be a patron of the museum to be a patron here. Alongside a very long wine list is an equally long lunch offering, with everything from simple sandwiches to seafood and steaks. Traditional Dutch and international cuisines are equally represented on the menu. Guests can also share a variety of small snacks and bites with friends and family to tide them over until dinnertime — try the shrimp toast with chili sauce or the very Dutch combination of sausage and Old Amsterdam cheese.