Looking for all the latest openings this April? Karin's monthly roundup is always packed with Amsterdam's most exciting new bars, restaurants, shops, launches and seasonal offerings. Interested in a broader list of places to eat and drink? Explore our comprehensive coverage of bars and restaurants in Amsterdam.
Try out the city’s top new terraces
Looking to attract locals back to Leidseplein, Café de Waard has undergone a terrific transformation from tourist trap to trendy Parisian-style eatery. A 140 m2 patio brings international allure to the famous square with comfortable booths that offer plenty of privacy amid the bustle and a menu of brasserie classics such as steak tartare, oysters and Caesar salad with chicken goujons. Trust the trio known as 3WO (“Three Wise Men from the East”) to emerge from the lockdown with three (!) awesome additions to their Amsterdam hospitality empire. ARIE op de hoek (Ferdinand Bolstraat 24HS), an “ode to old-style brown bars”, has an all-day menu offering everything from classic Amsterdam ossenworst (smoked raw beef sausage) to avo toast and a cosy corner patio perfect for people-watching in modish De Pijp. Another contemporary take on the bruin café, De Neef van Fred (Jan Evertsenstraat 41HS) is set to open soon and promises some inviting waterside seating. Meanwhile, nearby Biertuin West (Jan Evertsenstraat 135), the third of 3WO’s successful beer gardens with a focus on Dutch craft beer, burgers and rotisserie chicken, has just opened with a mega-terrace on Mercatorplein.
Spoil mum with these Dutch Mother’s Day must-haves
Doesn’t every mother deserve to sit on a throne of 30.000 flower petals? Amsterdam-based design house Moooi certainly seems to think so, and its new Hortensia Armchair is a Spring-time dream come true (from €2,651). Meanwhile, trendy non-tarnish heart cut-out bracelets (€19.95 for a mother-and-daughter set via My Jewellery) prove that meaningful gifts can be found in all price categories. New mums may get a kick out of matching organic cotton pyjama sets (€5/€12 at HEMA) – with slogans such as “UP ALL NIGHT” and “SLEEP ALL DAY” – but heart-shaped bonbons and bubbly will always be welcome, too (from €7.50). Meanwhile, local Fair Trade chocolate label Tony’s Chocolonely has a cheeky last-minute supermarket gift option for the sweet-toothed moeder in your life: a free box to create your own triple-pack (€8.67).
Explore the city’s tastiest new walking tours
Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a long-time local, there’s no better way to explore all Amsterdam has to offer than by foot. It’s no surprise, then, that food and drink themed walking tours have thrived during lockdown. We recently tried out three of the latest to join the fray. With its so-called Yummy Tour, the prettily-named 1001 Grachten offers the most budget-friendly option: for €29.95 pp it includes a short walk with five stops in hip West, featuring Indonesian, Middle Eastern and Japanese street food bites, as well as two cocktails, coffee/tea, a bottle of wine and a bag with a booklet including “Would You Rather” questions to keep the convo flowing. Aimed at the more discerning food lover Le Food Walk is an excellent option. The De Pijp route (€39.50 pp) encompasses six stops over 5.3 km, with five delicious bites and two drinks from some of the borough’s best gastro bars and restaurants. Available in Dutch and English, the digital walking route offers more information about each stop as well as food-focused questions to keep you chatting. Cocktail lovers can’t go wrong with the Vodka Trail (until 9 May), which combines some seriously good vodka-based drinks with beautiful bites inspired by the liquor’s elemental flavours: rye, fire and water, at six stops. At Salmuera, for instance, there’s a zingy Pampas ryeball cocktail with white asparagus-based ginger beer and Peruvian peppers paired with a funky KFC-inspired glazed cauliflower with spicy housemade tomatillo salsa and fermented chimichurri hot sauce. At €60 pp it’s the most expensive of the trio, but so worth it!
Enjoy the latest Dutch drinks
You don’t have to be a #fitgirl or #fitboy to enjoy the fabulous new “superfood tonic” FUL, but it will help with your post-workout recovery. Packed with plant-based protein, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, this bright blue beverage tastes like a glass of sparkling seaside – perfect for warm spring days and beyond. Choose from lemon-ginger or lime-mint (€15.90 for a 4-pack via fulfoods.com). The low ABV trend is showing no sign of letting up, and White Stork is the latest Dutch hard seltzer (carbonated water with alcohol and fruit) to hit the market. Made with Champagne yeast and sustainable surplus fruit, the refreshing, all-natural drink has only 27 kcal per serving. It’s available in two flavours, lemon-ginger and pear-hibiscus-lavender (€18 for a 6-pack via drinkstork.com).
Indulge in the best new frozen treats
Just in time for warmer weather, Ijsco Amsterdam (Van Baerlestraat 51) off Museumplein offers ice cream in flavours such as guava, stroopwafel and lemon cheesecake (from €1.70), and the new froyo spot Frizolino (Beethovenstraat 64) has Greek-style frozen yoghurt with over 40 toppings (from €2.90 including a topping and sauce). Meanwhile, Jan Pieter IJsje (Jan Pieter Heijestraat 117) is hoping to attract all the littles with its new “funcones” concept: housemade cones decorated with unicorns, butterflies, footballs or Disney figures, with exciting special effects to match (from €1.70). Parents, you’ve been forewarned!
Get ready for summer in Dutch fashion
Update your wardrobe with the latest looks by local labels. Josh V has a Spring/Summer collection dedicated to “feminine heroes” in lovely latte shades and relaxed, easy shapes, such as a loose-fit blazer (€169.99) with matching cropped trousers (€149.99) and trenchcoat (€209.99). ESPRIT reflects on 30 years of sustainable fashion history with a new collection inspired by its 90s-era archives. It features “new heritage” silhouettes that seem surprisingly modern – think pretty piqué weave turquoise jumpsuits (€79.99) for her and breathable bi-stretch slim-fit khaki summer suits (€209.98) for him. And, BARTS Amsterdam brings it with beachy blue and sandy hues, from bikinis and bathing trunks to tie-dyed cover-ups and straw hats (€34.99).
Meet the latest mouthwatering food spots
Lockdown favoured so-called “essential stores” and therefore it’s no surprise that specialist food & drink shops have flourished. One of an impressive batch of new bakeries, ex-De Kas baker Maarten Langeslag’s Fort Negen (Jan Evertsenstraat 31) lives up to the hype with fluffy madeleines, scrumptious strawberry & panna cotta cruffins, decadent gorgonzola croissants and marvellous sourdough specialities, fermented for 26 hours and baked to dark-crusted perfection. Yum! Tea connoisseurs should make a beeline for Moychay tearoom (Rozengracht 92H), which boasts over 30 types of premium loose-leaf teas (including red, green and herbal teas as well as pu-erhs, oolongs, mate and sandalwood). It’s also a treasure trove of teaware and -accessories including wood-fired bowls and handcrafted teapots, and there are a tea bar and tea ceremony rooms, too. The takeaway trend has offered the opportunity for some pop-ups to find a more permanent home. You can now sink your teeth into Toktok’s fabulous fried chicken burgers and -tendies at Toktok West in ping-pong café PONG (Spaarndammerstraat 460). Looking for up-to-the-minute eating, drinking and shopping recommendations? Follow Karin on Instagram where you’ll find her checking out the latest restaurants, bars and shops, and returning to old favourites.
Looking for up-to-the-minute eating, drinking and shopping recommendations? Follow Karin on Instagram where you’ll find her checking out the latest restaurants, bars and shops, and returning to old favourites.