When people think of Dutch beer, most will think of Heineken. Their commitment to quality and decades of relentless advertising give it well-deserved popularity. A few people with a fuzzy knowledge of history and geography will think of “the beer brewed by monks.” But the Netherlands is home to more than 50 breweries (none of them Belgian btw, and all but one not Heineken) and hundreds of beers. A lot of this beer potential is untapped by many visitors to the Netherlands, but one bar in Amsterdam has aimed to change that.
Arendsnest, located on the Herengracht Canal, is a bar that serves only Dutch beer. It is a cozy place overlooking the canal. There is a large wooden bar and a few tables lining the wood-paneled walls. Most restaurants, bars and cafes in the Netherlands offer a few beers on tap, but at Arendsnest you will find more than 30. Add that to the list of the bottles they keep and the total is more than a hundred different beers. Centrally located, it is between Centraal Station and the Nine Straats, two blocks from the Anne Frank House.
When you walk in, take a seat at the bar or one of the tables and grab the gigantic beer menu. It is in Dutch, but you can probably get the gist of most of it. Take your time looking it over, and if you have questions, don’t hesitate to ask; the bartender would love to talk to you about beer. Dutch beer is some of the best beer in the world, so even if you misinterpret the menu, you probably will not be disappointed.
Arendsnest is open from 2pm until midnight Sunday through Thursday and until 2am on weekends.
Arendsnest is a must for any beer lover visiting Amsterdam looking to try something besides Heineken and beer made by monks.