Bridges, bicycles and beautiful buildings – a walk around Amsterdam this autumn is seriously dreamy. If you’ve never been to the Dutch capital and you just want to soak it all up, head to the famous 9 streets (or De 9 Straatjes).
But if you’re looking for something off the beaten track, good things come to those who wander. These are nine of the best hidden cafes and restaurants where you can taste the real Amsterdam and all its many multicultural flavours. Plus, you’ll forever avoid those pesky brunch queues…
For breakfast / brunch
Tucked away in Amsterdam’s bohemian De Pijp district, Rainbowls is a bright little slice of paradise in the city. The colourful range of smoothie bowls will light up your Insta feed and are more than worth the wait. Try ‘The Violet’ for a shot of blueberry-strawberry-peanut-buttery goodness.
Nestled next to the city’s prettiest park, Vondelpark, Dignita serves up an impressive all-day brunch. But forget the basic eggs – we’re talking red velvet pancakes, umami avocado toast with seaweed and yuzu and the tastiest plant bowls.
Coffee and Coconuts
Set in a former cinema built in the roaring 20’s, the beachy interiors alone are worth a visit. The menu is inspired by its other, more tropical location in Bali, Indonesia. Think delicious Java coffee, fluffy and fruity French toast, superfood bowls and coconut lime bread.
From the people who run Amsterdam’s popular Foodhallen, Kanarie Club is a fun work/play space where you can grab a coffee or a local beer at the enormous central bar. Formerly an old tram shed, the new design is fresh with neon lighting and botanicals galore. Fancy a long lunch? Upstairs there’s a pool bar and cocktails aplenty.
Fresh seafood – check. Riverside views – check. A free ferry shuttle that takes you to your table – check. This former factory is one of the coolest lunch spots where you can order the freshest ‘catch of the day’ or a whole lobster if you wish.
Tucked under a multi-storey car park (stay with us), is this beloved terrace restaurant/hang out space. There’s a sun-drenched terrace, the vibe is chill-meets-party and the food is a colourful mix of Dutch and Surinamese – a small country in northeastern South America formerly colonised by the Dutch. Oh and there’s a weekly pub quiz if you’re up for it!
Looking for the best vegan ramen in Amsterdam? Found it! Owner Atsushi Ishida is passionate about taking care of the planet and makes all the noodles from scratch. The restaurant also only works with reservations to minimise waste.
Serving up delicious, plant-based fare (yes, Amsterdam is très veggie and vegan-friendly!), this restaurant is great at making vegetables exciting. Every dish is stunning, the menu changes with the seasons and the tasting menu is actually pretty reasonable.
This new pizza joint is a total find. Think doughy-based pizzas with a perfectly crisp crust, sauces made with Italian-grown tomatoes and plenty of oozy Buffalo mozzarella. All tucked away in the trendy Roelof Hartstraat area.