4 days in Amsterdam - a few questions

Jun 3rd, 2016, 09:20 AM
  #21  
 
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spaarne, your attempts at humor are amusing, as always.

>>>Ben de Jong, a retired history professor, leads a WW2 walking tour of the city. It focuses on the Jewish experience in the war. Excellent tour. <<<

Such a shame, because Amsterdam has a deep jewish past, stretching back centuries. Excellent though de Jong's walk is, it kind of skews jewish history. The Jewish Historical Museum also does guided tours and includes a visit to the Esnoga and the Libreria Etz Haim. I'd go on a tour for the latter visit alone.

PalenQ, which Dutch departments stores? As of this spring, V&D has closed, Bonneterie closed a few years ago. Hema does indeed have the peasoup that spaarne yearns for, but Bijenkorf is much more upmarket and does "international" food.

For lunch places, restaurants etc, check reviews on iens.nl. You can search by area. So, for instance, in De Pijp:

http://www.iens.nl/restaurant/amsterdam/de-pijp

And people, it's not rijstafel, or rijstaffel or whatever, but rijsttafel. (and Tropenmuseum, not "troppenmuseum")

Very good Eurasian restaurants are in The Hague, not Amsterdam.
If you want a modern spin on eurasian (NOT Indonesian) cuisine, there's Blauw:

http://www.iens.nl/restaurant/23577/...lauw-amsterdam

the classic way to dine is: order rice as a base (can be white rice, or fragrant, cold sticky rice (lontong) for hot weather etc. Then: a "wet" vegetable dish (sayuran), a sweetish dish (semur) a slightly spicier dish, sweet and sour pickles (acar campur or acar ketimun) and something crunchy like kerupuk. The idea is that all flavors are balanced on the plate: sweet, sour, astringent, spicy, salty, and also that there is a good variety of textures. "white" beer, which has coriander seeds as part of the flavoring, goes very well with this. Blauw does it a little bit differently, but they'll be happy to advice you. Usually, with rijsttafel dishes, the quality is lower, because they have the components in chafing dishes and nothing is cooked to order. If you order a la carte, they'll cook for you, instead of reheating what they made at mise en place earlier that afternoon.

personally I'd never go to a place like Max, but their reviews at Iens are pretty good.

StCirq, we're a nation of traders. Amsterdam is a city of trade. Incredibly high level Dutch contemporary cooking can be had here: http://www.iens.nl/restaurant/36076/...usje-amsterdam
It's not peasoup or herring...

FEBO: bad idea, but PalenQ touts it in every Dutch, food related posting.
menachem is online now  
Jun 3rd, 2016, 09:20 AM
  #22  
 
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PS, both the resistance museum and our lord in the attic are excellent choices.
menachem is online now  
Jun 3rd, 2016, 09:53 AM
  #23  
 
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FEBO: bad idea, but PalenQ touts it in every Dutch, food related posting.>

Well I love it and many others do too - the automats like used to be in NYC are novel and the ice cream or whatever it is is devine. Frites are good too with a mind-boggling variety of toppings.

Dutch folk mainly flock here menachem - tell me why? Food snobs used would diss it but the average bloke seems to love them. Helps perhaps to be stoned perhaps but if I lived in Holland I would probably rarely eat there too - just like I do not do fast food here at all - but this is a Dutch institution that should be experienced for the experience.

Well been a few years since I was in Amsterdam - department stores are on the way out.
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Jun 3rd, 2016, 02:22 PM
  #25  
 
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menachem on Jun 3, 16 at 1:20pm
spaarne, your attempts at humor are amusing, as always.


Honored to be complimented by the Master.
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Jun 3rd, 2016, 11:11 PM
  #26  
 
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spaarne, you're so welcome!

PalenQ: you go to febo if you've spent a night on the town, and you need to get an instant fix of fat and salt. I think that hetismij will concur that febo and similar are for "een vette bek halen", to "get you a greasy mouth".

febo may be a pleasure, but it's a guilty one. McD is busier.

however, fries at febo are of pretty good quality. but not the blocks of fried cholesterol that they have in their automats.

and lastly: what experience? the experience of inserting 1.50 and getting a bamihap from a window?
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Jun 3rd, 2016, 11:32 PM
  #27  
 
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at spaarne: "are those chicken satays?"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Ky1QU8OMt0
menachem is online now  
Jun 4th, 2016, 02:21 AM
  #28  
 
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menachem on Jun 4, 16 at 3:32am
at spaarne: "are those chicken satays?"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Ky1QU8OMt0


How is that relevant? Wasted 5m57s of my life watching the rubbish.
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Jun 4th, 2016, 02:29 AM
  #29  
 
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We stayed at a hotel a minute away from your hotel. The whole area around your hotel (Pjip) is bursting to the seams with every possible kind of restaurant. We only ate in another area one time (we were in Amsterdam for a week). Use Yelp, TripAdvisor or the Dutch site ines to find them or just walk down the street.
The Albert Cuyp Street Market is noisy and crowded. If you're going to be tired after your flight, it might be better to take a canal cruise. You don't have to go to the city center. Right near the Rijksmuseum, there is a canal cruise company.
We walked into the Rijksmuseum without any trouble, but reserve a time for the Van Gogh museum. We bought the museum card at the Rijksmuseum (we went to many museums during the week and it was a bargain for us.) and the salesgirl told me that I must reserve at time for the V.G. museum. It's a good thing that I did because the museum was packed (and it was only the beginning of May.)
A museum that I highly recommend is the Maritime museum (not Nemo). I found that more interesting than the Dutch Resistance museum (which is good for WWII history buffs IMO).
You'll definitely fill up 4 days with your plans!
Taltul is offline  
Jun 4th, 2016, 05:12 AM
  #30  
 
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Here's a second for Haesje Claes. After tasting my husband's first course of pea soup, I changed my entree order to pea soup alone (a few years ago in July).

We also had excellent pizza one night: http://www.pazziamsterdam.nl
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Jun 4th, 2016, 06:48 AM
  #31  
 
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Last time around we also walked right into the Rijks without difficulty. The Van Gogh the last time was filled with cruise ship passengers but I suspect that's an infrequent event.

Personally, I wouldn't allow myself to get too caught up with the "debates" above about rice tables and all the rest of the "I'm smarter than you are" routine.

You'll find PLENTY to do in that city; just try not to overthink it.
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Jun 4th, 2016, 07:03 AM
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spaarne, the whole piece is a litany of febo type food. super relevant. the dutch humor, of which you are a connoisseur, is contained in the fact that the entire order is a chat up line to the febo owner.
menachem is online now  
Jun 4th, 2016, 02:15 PM
  #33  
 
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menachem - I never meant to say eat at FEBOs or take out as a meal - just as a treat while walking around - and for us at least a bami or nasi goreng from a slot could be exotic.

And the Dairy Queen type ice cream in a cup hits the spot sometimes too - but to eat a lot there often no way Jose - just for the experience and convenience while walking or coming back from a night out on the town - FEBOs are packed late at night IME.

But don't get me wrong - I was not saying to eat at FEBO as a meal choice - no not at all.

Cheers!
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Jun 5th, 2016, 12:29 AM
  #34  
 
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The relief, PalenQ.
That aside, it always surprises me if visitors to Amsterdam claim they have difficulties in finding good food. I always point to iens.nl, which is a fantastic resource and much better than the reviews on Trip Advisor.

Now, if people complained of very bad service in restaurants, that would stand to reason.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 07:04 AM
  #35  
 
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menachem on Jun 4, 16 at 11:03am
spaarne, the whole piece is a litany of febo type food. super relevant.


Super irrelevant for me. You have me mixed up with the other Michigander on Fodors, Mr. PalenQ. I've walked past these "febo" holes in the wall a thousand times but never ate any of the stuff.

My fast food for Holland is
a) haring from a vis wagon,
b) kaasbrood from a bakery,
c) uitsmijter at a bar,
d) a peanut butter sandwich I packed from my B&B.

Speaking of peanut butter, I confess to having a fondness for one Indonesian dish, saté, also known as satay.

As for very bad service in Dutch restaurants, it is legendary. The only place where I've seen worse is in former East Germany just after the wall came down. And, of course, in the realm of fiction, you have the John Cleese comedy series "Fawlty Towers."
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Jun 5th, 2016, 07:55 AM
  #36  
 
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I always thought Amsterdam to be a culinary heaven with all those neat small intimate ethnic potpourri of restaurants. Forget Dutch cuisine if you want but Amsterdam is a foodie's heaven.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 08:10 AM
  #37  
 
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Another thumbs up for the Dutch Resistance Museum. We were in Amsterdam last month, hadn't reserved tickets for the Anne Frank House (our second time in Amsterdam and still not able to see the AFH!)

We went to the Dutch Resistance Museum, thinking it would be a "second choice" --- it was very impressive and interesting. I think we stayed about two hours, and we were very glad we hadn't missed it.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 12:56 PM
  #38  
 
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The only place where I've seen worse is in former East Germany just after the wall came down>

The service in Eastern Europe was even worse before the walls fell down - literally throwing stuff at you in stores which were not self service.
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