Cheese-eating is taken extremely seriously in the Netherlands and Amsterdam has plenty of fantastic tasting rooms where you can sample new varieties. The reputation of Fromagerie Abraham Kef reaches back to 1953, sourcing the finest French and Dutch cheeses crafted by small producers for the lactose-craving people of Amsterdam. At their tasting room in Noord, you can sip on delicious wines as you sample artisanal cheese platters.
Or, for a tasting experience that just keeps on revolving, Kaasbar is an absolute paradise for fans of fromage. Prop up at the bar with a glass of wine and marvel as carefully selected artisanal Dutch cheeses trundle past you enticingly on the swanky sushi-style conveyor belt. When you see something you like, grab it! You’ll find everything from golden wheels of Gouda and Edam to white, blue, hard cheeses and creamy organic sheep’s milk varieties that will slip you into a lactose-induced reverie.
Cheese-lovers take note as this guide to cheese shopping in Amsterdam will tell you everything else you need to know.
Chateau is the place to go for top-quality wines produced right here on Dutch soil. Hidden amongst the industrial-chic buildings of Amsterdam-Noord, this urban vineyard has its very own tasting room where you can sample its complete range of delicious wines. Pop by for a tour and guided tasting to learn more about their in-house fermenting process and grape blends.
Over in West, Bret is another upcoming local winery proving that the good stuff doesn’t just come from France and Italy. Or, pop into Wijnwinkel Bob - a speciality store showcasing wine varieties made by small-scale Dutch producers.
Always in the mood for some pour decisions? Check out this rundown of our favourite wine bars in the city.
Amsterdam’s craft beer scene has been hopping off in recent years with a colossal array of local breweries, taprooms and specialty tasting bars now spread across the city. In de Wildeman is a well seasoned favourite. Housed in a former distillery dating back to 1690, this atmospheric brewpub serves over 200 bottled beers and around 18 draft varieties on any given day.
For a taste of the city’s contemporary brewing culture, pull up a barstool at Brouwerij Troost, an experimental brewery with a trio of locations. Their small-batch brewery housed in a spectacular former monastery in De Pijp is well worth the visit. Alternatively, you can visit their cavernous space at the Westergasterrein (which is open for tours) or their cosy brew pup in Oud-West to sample their range of freshly poured organic beers - pilsners, saisons, IPAs, tripels and you name it - from the tanks above the bar.
Amsterdam’s distilling tradition for jenever - a juniper-flavoured liqueur that locals can’t get enough of - goes back yonks. Best of all, there are a whole host of authentic taverns and tasting rooms across the city for you to try different varieties. Wynand Fockink is your first drinking hole of call: a historic pub and distillery that has been ageing traditional Dutch liqueurs and brandies in oak barrels since 1679. Impress the bartender by taking your first sip completely handsfree or ordering a kopstootje - jenever in a tulip-shaped glass with a beer on the side.
Alternatively, Proeflokaal de Admiraal is a delightful canalside tasting room for the van Wees Distillery. Here you can sample a range of locally-distilled jenevers paired with delectable bar snacks that will give you the perfect introduction to traditional Dutch cuisine. They also offer tastings and guided tours of the Ooievaar Distillery in the neighbouring Jordaan.
Can’t get enough of the good stuff? Here’s our selection of the best places to slurp jenever in Amsterdam.