Best Cafe in Amsterdam

Amsterdam has an incredible coffee culture that melds tradition with a keen sense of modernity.

The city is renowned for its diverse range of specialty cafes, each offering an array of experiences from cosy retreats to bustling social hubs, serving everything from batch brew coffee to local pastries.

Visitors and locals can seek these establishments not just for the quality of the beverages and snacks, but also for the unique atmosphere that each Amsterdam café brings to the table.

For those in search of quality coffee, delicious cakes, or a warm ambiance to while away the hours, Amsterdam’s café scene does not disappoint.

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Selecting the finest café in this Dutch capital involves considering several factors including the quality of the coffee, the variety of the menu, the location, and the overall ambiance.

Some cafes, like Back to Black, prioritise sustainable, house-roasted coffee and exude a cosy charm that invites patrons to stick around.

Amsterdam’s best cafes are those that understand the necessity of blending exceptional coffee with a warm environment. It’s in these spaces that guests can relish the culture of the city, whether they’re looking for a quick caffeine fix or a leisurely afternoon affair.  

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Best 20 Cafes in Amsterdam

While the search for the “best” can be subjective, the city’s offerings ensure there is a spot to satisfy every preference, be it for a traditional Dutch experience or a contemporary, award-winning barista’s masterpiece there’s a coffee shop for you.

1. Five Ways Coffee

Five Ways Coffee is a specialty coffee shop located in the heart of Amsterdam, offering a unique concept centered around five different ways to enjoy coffee.

Their commitment to quality is evident in their selection of beans, which are meticulously sourced and roasted to perfection. With a focus on the craft of coffee making, Five Ways Coffee provides a variety of brewing methods to showcase the diverse flavors and profiles of their coffees.

Their cozy and inviting atmosphere makes it an ideal spot for coffee lovers to explore new tastes and savor their favorite brews. To learn more about their offerings, visit their website here.

2. Back to Black

Back to Black Coffee is a charming coffee shop and roastery based in Amsterdam, known for its commitment to sustainability and direct trade with coffee farmers.

They roast their own coffee to ensure the highest quality and freshness, offering a range of single-origin beans and expertly crafted blends.

The warm and welcoming ambiance of their cafes, coupled with their delicious homemade cakes and pastries, make Back to Black Coffee a beloved spot among locals and visitors alike.

Passionate about both coffee and community, they strive to create a memorable experience for every guest. For further details, check out their website here.

3. Uncommon

Uncommon is a modern coffee company based in Amsterdam that specializes in providing excellent specialty coffee for coffee aficionados. They curate a selection of specialty coffees from around the world, focusing on sustainable and ethical sourcing practices.

Uncommon aims to deliver an extraordinary coffee experience. Their commitment to quality is matched by their dedication to customer convenience, making it easy for coffee lovers to enjoy a premium cup of coffee at home.

4. Scandinavian Embassy

The Scandinavian Embassy is praised for its excellent coffee and its Nordic-inspired cuisine that complements the cafe’s selection of brews.

5. Friedhats FUKU Cafe

The Friedhats FUKU Cafe is a must-visit for coffee enthusiasts, offering a dynamic selection created by award-winning baristas.

6. Winkel 43

Winkel 43 is renowned for having the best apple pie in Amsterdam, a claim that has been highly recommended by both locals and tourists alike.

7. Public Space

Public Space is a contemporary cafe with an emphasis on quality and design, making it a popular choice for those seeking a modern coffee experience.

8. Hummingbird

Delicate and delightful, Hummingbird serves as a sweet retreat for those desiring pastries alongside their caffeine fix.

9. SAINT-JEAN Bakery

SAINT-JEAN Bakery combines the charm of a traditional bakery with the convenience of a modern café, making it a hit for breakfast and lunchtime crowds.

10. Bar Botanique

With its lush plant-filled decor, Bar Botanique offers a tropical escape in the heart of Amsterdam, noted not only for its drinks but also for its vivacious atmosphere.

11. Coffee District

The Coffee District is a local favourite, with a reputation for producing robust and flavourful coffee blends.

12. De Koffieschenkerij

Set in a historic building, De Koffieschenkerij offers a glimpse into Amsterdam’s past paired with an excellent selection of coffee and pastries.

13. Bocca

Bocca is a testament to Dutch coffee roasting, serving meticulously crafted beverages that showcase the precision of the craft.

14. Schuurmanoomkensgrassotti

An outlet that pairs simple elegance with complex coffee flavours, Schuurmanoomkensgrassotti has carved a niche for itself on the Amsterdam coffee scene.

15. De Bakkerswinkel

Renowned for its homemade bread and jam, De Bakkerswinkel provides a homely atmosphere that’s as inviting as its menu.

16. Coffee Bru

Coffee Bru is celebrated for its vibrant coffee culture, where the baristas serve each cup with a personal touch.

17. Rum Baba

At Rum Baba, guests can indulge in freshly baked goods and artisanal coffee in a colourful and inviting setting.

18. Toki

Toki offers a haven for coffee lovers with its selection of international beans and welcoming vibe.

19. Dignita

Dignita not only serves exceptionally brewed coffee but also prides itself on a menu that champions locally-sourced ingredients.

20. CT Coffee & Coconuts

At CT Coffee & Coconuts, visitors can enjoy their coffee in a spacious, laid-back environment. Housed in a former cinema, this cafe is loved for its fresh coconuts and a diverse range of coffee options.

Culinary Delights

Amsterdam offers a smorgasbord of delightful options for every meal, from the first sip of morning coffee to sweet confections enjoyed as a day’s finale. Hearty breakfasts, leisurely brunches, and indulgent desserts have all stamped their mark on the city’s culinary map.

Breakfast Favourites

Amsterdam’s breakfast scene caters to a wide range of tastes, serving everything from traditional Dutch staples to modern healthy fare. Pancakes and avocado on toast are particularly popular, marrying well with the city’s love for good coffee. Back to Black, noted for its commitment to sustainability, excels in both, serving house-roasted coffee alongside a menu of breakfast favourites.

Lunch and Brunch Spots

For those who enjoy a later start, lunch and brunch establishments offer a fusion of flavours. Artisan sandwiches, often featuring local cheeses and hand-crafted bread, are a common sight. A standout choice for brunch is a hearty serving of hash browns or a spiced kimchi bagel, combining traditional comfort with a twist of international zest. Café Loetje is renowned for its lunch offerings, with emphasis on tender steaks that satisfy midday hunger.

Sweet Treats and Desserts

When it comes to ending a meal on a high note, Amsterdam’s cafés and bakeries excel with their sweet offerings. From the homely apple pie to decadent pecan pie, the options are both delicious and diverse. De Foodhallen provides an indoor market experience where one can indulge in a selection of desserts, reflecting the culinary diversity of the city.

Unique Amsterdam Cafe Experiences

The Amsterdam cafe scene offers a tapestry of experiences, from the fusion of art and sipping coffee, the infamous coffee shops with their unique cannabis culture, to the serene canalside venues that define the city’s landscape.

Art and Decor

Visitors can immerse themselves in a world where caffeine meets creativity. Cafes like REM Eiland, with its history as a pirate radio station, offer a dining experience elevated 22 metres above water. Artistic decor is an integral part of the cafe culture, providing an ambience that is as compelling as the brews they serve.

Coffee Shops and Cannabis

Coffee shops in Amsterdam are renowned for their cannabis offerings. In these establishments, one can find an assortment of cannabis products, from weed to space cakes. It is the norm here to pair a coffee with cannabis, which is both legal and part of the city’s bold coffee shop tradition. The aura is relaxed, and knowledgeable staff can assist newcomers to navigate the menu.

Canalside Views

For a tranquil retreat, canalside cafés offer picturesque views and a moment to unwind. The gentle hum of the water complements the clinking of coffee cups, creating an idyllic setting. These venues, often spotted with coconuts on their counters, provide a contrast to the bustling city, offering a genuine Amsterdam experience by the water.

Location and Accessibility

Navigating the vibrant streets of Amsterdam, visitors and locals alike enjoy a plethora of cafes that are not only the epitome of cosiness but also easily accessible. Whether one finds themselves near major landmarks or tucked away in quieter neighbourhoods, there’s an understanding that the best cafés are always within reach.

Central Amsterdam and Tourist Areas

In the heart of Amsterdam, Amsterdam Central Station acts as a hub, connecting numerous tram and bus routes that can ferry travellers to nearby tourist hotspots. Cafés dot the landscape around landmarks such as the Red Light District and Vondelpark, ensuring that anyone exploring the city’s central sights can easily stop for a coffee. Local establishments thrive on their proximity to these buzzing areas, offering visitors a chance to refresh before they continue their journey.

Neighbourhood Gems

Beyond the tourist centre, Amsterdam’s neighbourhoods like Bos en Lommer boast hidden café treasures. The Albert Cuyp Market area and the bustling Kinkerstraat are lined with quirky and charming cafés that showcase the city’s local flavours. These neighbourhoods might require a bit more traversal but promise a genuine Amsterdam café experience away from the tourist trail.

Frequently Asked Questions

Exploring the best cafés in Amsterdam often leads to a host of questions for both newcomers and seasoned visitors alike. To enhance your café experience, this section addresses common inquiries specific to Amsterdam’s unique coffee culture.

Which areas in Amsterdam boast the highest number of coffee shops?

The neighbourhoods of De Wallen, also known as the Red Light District, and De Pijp are well-known for their density of coffee shops. Travellers can find a wide variety of establishments, each with their own unique atmosphere and specialties.

What distinguishes a coffee shop from a café within the Amsterdam context?

In Amsterdam, a coffee shop is an establishment where cannabis products are sold and consumed legally. A café, conversely, refers to a place where one can enjoy coffee, tea, pastries, and light meals without the availability of cannabis.

Are tourists permitted to visit coffee shops in Amsterdam?

Yes, tourists are generally allowed to visit coffee shops in Amsterdam. However, it is crucial to carry a valid identification document as many coffee shops have age restrictions, typically requiring patrons to be 18 years or over.

What is the most historic coffee shop in Amsterdam?

De Tweede Kamer is often regarded as one of the most historic coffee shops in Amsterdam. This establishment has been serving customers for decades, retaining a classic allure that is rich in history.

Which coffee shops do locals in Amsterdam recommend?

Locals in Amsterdam tend to recommend coffee shops that offer quality, comfort, and a relaxing ambiance. Boerejongens is frequently highlighted for its classy interiors, while others appreciate the ultimate vibes at Coffeeshop Amsterdam.

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