Cocktails is not a Dutch Thing. You can get a good cocktail in Amsterdam, but you have to know where to go.
Here are 10 decent cocktail bars in Amsterdam (in random order) from cheap to very expensive.
1. Café Vesper
Café Vesper, located at Haarlemmerstraat, within 20 minutes walk from Central Station is named by many as one of the best cocktail bars in Amsterdam.On the list are exciting sounding ingredients such as apricot brandy, home made lavender syrup, blackcurrant confiture and ginger beer.
The award winning crew responsible is ready to share their secrets because they also offer workshops. Great for bachelor parties.
Cocktails €9 -€10. Only open from Tuesday to Saturday.
In Amsterdam Chinatown, right by the Nieuwmarket Square is this little gem: Lime. The orange colours and 60s sofas are sophisticated but will make everyone feel right at home.
Unpretentious, mixed homo/hetero crowd that packs the place during the weekend.
Try the Hairy Canary.
3. Door 74
Named in a list of best cocktail bars in the world (no 29 out of 50), Door 74 can afford its exclusiveness and eccentricity.
Entrance to bar Door 74 for a cocktail is solely by reservation on the same day by phoning in.
Inside there is a dimly lit ambiance with American style service. Cocktail making at Amsterdam’s Door 74 is considered a profession and an art form.
Prices are €15 – €19 for a cocktail.
4. Sky Lounge
The Sky Lounge is the rooftop bar of the Double tree hotel (formerly known as Mint Hotel), nearby Central Station. Just the panoramic view on Amsterdam alone from the 11th floor is worth a visit.
In summer you can enjoy the view from the rooftop terrace.
5. Café Cuba
Brown bar Café Cuba serves up classic mojitos, margaritas, daiquiris and caipirinhas while you’ll enjoy watching the crazy crowd pass by your window/table at Nieuwmarkt Square.
Weekends it can get steamy and danceable with sexy salsa tunes coming from the jukebox.
Free wifi. Cocktails €6.
6. Sake & Co
Like the name reveals, Sake & Co serves around 8 types of sake– Japanese rice wine and a variety of Asian beers. Also, the bartenders do their best to prepare cocktails.
The cocktail list has some 10 to 15 different names on it, with some intriguing like Blushing Geisha, Okinawa Sunrise and Tokyo Rose.
Cocktails are €5 to €9. Daily happy hour 6 pm – 9 pm and cocktail night on Thursday (€5 per cocktail).
7. House of Bols Museum
Cocktail fans should not leave out a visit to the Amsterdam gin museum: House of Bols, across the Van Gogh Museum. The museum is fun. You can try to guess the flavour of the Dutch Genevers (Dutch gin) and taste paper strips with sample smells.
Including in the entrance price (€11) is one cocktail (choice out of 16) and two shots of genever.
8. En Pluche
En Pluche is the little sister of (and located next to) Holland’s most famous high end restaurant Le Garage (the owner is Dutch tv-chef).
At En Pluch you’ll find the same high class atmosphere as in Le Garage with a warm dark and red interior and jazz lounge music in the background.
The concept is cocktails and finger food.
Twenty-Third is located on the 23rd floor of the Okura Hotel in area the Pijp. Think: sipping champagn in the hotel lounge in a skyscraper in Hong Kong. The mojitos are considered the best of Amsterdam.
Open till 1.
Between Rembrandplein and Munt is Feijoa, a low profile cocktail Amsterdam bar. Popular at after work drinks on Fridays with the locals, and some space to sit outside. The bartenders sure know how to shake ‘m and their creations vary from cucumber drinks to Strawberry Balsamic Vinegar Martini.
Impressed already? Cocktails €8