The Dutch capital doesn’t disappoint when it comes to food. In and around the city centre, you’ll find Michelin-starred restaurants beside casual bistros and traditional cafés serving some of the country’s finest exports – stroopwaffles and Dutch apple pie, for example. For fine dining, book into The Duchess which holds one Michelin star. The venue is opulent, as is the Mediterranean menu. Bougainville also holds one star, offering views of Dam Square and unusual flavour combinations that combine eastern and western cuisines. Then there’s Flore, the most celebrated restaurant in the city, which holds two stars plus a green star for its eco credentials. It showcases the very best of Dutch produce: ingredients come from biodynamic farms and the kitchen doesn’t use any dairy to minimise its carbon footprint.
De Plantage in the chic Plantage neighbourhood is a lovely lunch spot, especially during the warmer months when diners can sit in the courtyard or light-filled atrium. Expect open sandwiches, pasta dishes and OTT desserts. Interior lovers should make a beeline for Marie, an upmarket brasserie with plush pink seating and an impressive art collection. Southern French dishes are best enjoyed with a glass or two from the restaurant’s extensive wine list. For equally delicious food but in a more relaxed setting, Bak is housed in a former warehouse with views over the IJ river. Lunch is served at the weekend, and dinner is available Thursday through to Saturday. The menu changes daily and there’s always something interesting on offer.
For great steak, you want French bistro Petit Caron. Sit outside on its Parisian café chairs and go classic with steak frites. Sister property Café Caron is also worth a visit. If you’re after a casual spot, head to the Docklands with its industrial buildings and waterside restaurants, like Wilde Zwijnen which serves three to five-course meals supplemented with oysters or cheeseboards. The chefs use seasonal produce to create modern dishes that have made it a favourite among locals, who know how to make the most of its spacious terrace on brighter days. To the north of the city, Stork has a similar vibe. What was once an abandoned industrial estate is now a buzzy riverside food hub specialising in seafood. Visit for the shellfish platters and catch of the day, cooked in lashings of butter, and stay for the sharing puddings and ‘liquid dessert’ cocktails.