Last week I took a spontaneous five day holiday to the city of Amsterdam with one of my friends. When I say ‘spontaneous’ I don’t mean I woke up Monday morning thinking ‘you know what? Amsterdam sounds like a plan for today’.  No, I mean we’d only decided to book it a couple of weeks before, and I’d spent every day since researching what to do and, more importantly, where to eat.

I’ve wanted to visit Amsterdam for ages, and it certainly did not disappoint. It was hands down one of the best cities that I have ever been to. Not only is it truly beautiful with its many canals and terrace houses, but it has this incredibly relaxed and welcoming vibe that is often missing from busy cities such as those in the UK. The trams are so easy to navigate meaning you can virtually go anywhere in the city without hassle, and almost everyone speaks English so the communication barrier is no problem.

Normally, given my fitness goals, I track macros when I’m at home (if anyone needs educating on this, a quick google should do the trick). However, I’m obviously less strict with my diet when I’m away and decided to sample some of the delights that Amsterdam had to offer during my few days there. So here are some of my favourite foodie finds from the trip!

Coffee and Coconuts

Imagine your favourite breakfast/brunch spot. Now times this by 100 and you have Coffee and Coconuts. Seriously. This place is INCREDIBLE.

It’s based in a former cinema, meaning it has all these different levels and little sections that you have to access by various staircases. The staff are also so friendly and have a very relaxed vibe, meaning you’re made to feel like a sort of family whilst you’re there. As for the menu, it’s right up my street! Not only has it got lots of different teas and coffees (which are expertly brewed may I add) but it also has an assortment of juices and smoothies. I opted for the ‘coconut coffee’: a shot of espresso, banana, coconut, milk and chocolate poured over ice. It was so good! The food is very health orientated and you can tell it’s made with the best local ingredients. I had an acai bowl topped with various components and my friend chose the coconut pancakes (which I helped her out with so I can also vouch for their deliciousness).

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This certainly isn’t the most cost-friendly place in the world but if you’re looking for an awesome brunch spot with super cool architecture and a great, healthy menu then this is the place for you!

De Italiaan

We found this place after doing a quick search for nice Italian restaurants in the Vondelpark area after getting cravings for pizza! It’s located further down a side street away from the main road so you don’t get all the noise from the trams. We could tell this place was popular as soon as we arrived since we were told there would be an hours wait for a table! Disappointed, we decided to walk away only to reach the end of the road and decide ‘you know what? let’s wait!’ so we walked back and the staff were perfectly happy to add us to the list.

This was on a super hot day so all tables were outside, which created a lovely atmosphere with a chilled glass of wine in hand whilst we waited. As there were only two of us, I’m pretty sure the wait was only around 40 minutes in the end and it was worth it for the amazing pizzas that we ate. I chose one with pepperoni, various Italian cheeses, artichokes and rocket whilst my friend had one with roasted vegetables. They were crispy and flavoursome and the friendly staff made our dinner all the more enjoyable. Definitely a place to visit in Amsterdam if you’re after real Italian pizza.

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Cannibale Royale

This was a place that I’d actually booked a table at before our visit after reading great reviews on trip advisor and deciding it was a place I would not be turned down from if it was too busy to get a table! The clues in the name: they LOVE meat. So veggies, this place probably isn’t for you.

Cannibale actually has three locations in Amsterdam. We chose the Handboogstraat restaurant where we were seated on tall bar stalls around a tall bar table for two. After dithering over the menu and trying to decide if I simply wanted sides of mac and cheese and garlic bread (aka carbs on carbs) my friend convinced me to order a burger, sharing fries and garlic bread between us. Best. Decision. Ever. I’ve eaten a lot of burgers in my time but this was by far the most succulent, juicy burger I have eaten in my life. And the Dutch sure know how to do hella good fries with mayo. My one quib was the garlic bread which I could not taste one bit of garlic in, but after eyeing up the next tables bread a bit later I think we may have lacked out on our garlic sauce alongside our butter. Ten points from Hufflepuff for that. However, that burger more than made up for the bread fiasco. In fact, I’m still dreaming about it now…

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Obviously a lot more food was consumed during my week (carbonara, froyo, eggs benedict and cheese fondue to name a few) but these three places just had the edge for me.

Published by Alice Ball