Coffee, Lunch & ice cream

coffee amsterdam capuccino
Image: iStock / Nutnarin Khetwong

We Dutchies drink about 150 liters of coffee per capita a year. That’s more than double the American consumption. With all the consumption of this dark brew, you can imagine we have a thriving coffee culture in Amsterdam. (Please don’t confuse going for a coffee with going to a coffeeshop, these are complete different things). We Dutchies like to ‘go for a coffee’ to meet up with our friends.

Next to having fantastic coffee, we also have delicious ice cream shops (thanks to the Italians that have been living in our city for centuries).

Foto: created by my very creative friend Debbie Kreike

Here are my favourite places for coffee, lunch or ice cream, per district:

Centrum (City centre)

Lavinia – you can go to Lavinia for breakfast as well as lunch. The wonderful thing about this place is that they prepare their daily dishes with fresh products from the region without e numbers and other additives. A healthy choice! Address: Kerkstraat 176.
De Compagnon – located in a monumental building, this is one of the oldest and most unique restaurants in Amsterdam. It has a classic French kitchen that uses truffle in many dishes; a real fine-dining experience. For wine lovers: the wine list is extensive. Ask for a table at the window and you will have a lovely view over the waters of the Damrak. It is located in a quiet alley, next to the most touristy street of Amsterdam, but as it is a fine dining restaurant you will not find too many tourists here. It is a small establishment, so it is advisable to make a reservation. Address: Guldehandsteeg 17.
Buffet van Odette – a stylishly decorated bistro. No ordinary sandwiches on the menu here, but salads, ravioli and seafood instead. Open for breakfast, lunch or dinner. There is a terrace in summer that overlooks the beautiful Prinsengracht. Address: Prinsengracht 598.
Café Restaurant Hoogendam – away from tourists, at Westerdok, you will find this nice restaurant with a big terrace outside. They serve breakfast, lunch, dinner and if you are planning to come here with kids: they have a playground for kids. Address: Westerdoksplein 10.
Café de Jaren – a beautiful, spacious, grand cafe with high ceilings. Located in the city centre and still not too touristy. This cafe first opened its doors more than 30 years ago. In the middle of the cafe there is a large table where you can read international newspapers and magazines. Its visitors are a mix of students (as the University of Amsterdam is just around the corner), locals and tourists. It has a canal-side terrace at the back, so also a nice stop for a coffee whenever you are sailing on the canals. Address: Nieuwe Doelenstraat 20.

De Baarsjes

De huiskamer van Rembrandt – in the non-touristy part of Amsterdam you will find this café. It is located next to Rembrandtpark, that’s why it’s called ‘the living room of Rembrandt‘. As there aren’t that many nice cafés in this part of the city, the owner wanted to create a café where everybody feels at home. Its interior is inspired by all the cultures of this neighbourhood. You will find a mixture of Portuguese tiles, South American fabrics and Arabic woodcraft. In summer you can sit on the sunny terrace while overlooking the park or entertain yourself by playing some boules on one of the two courts. Address: Orteliuskade 5.

De Pijp

Scandinavian Embassy – having coffee here feels like having coffee in a coffee bar in Stockholm. Its decoration is very Scandinavian and there is always an international vibe. As sustainablility plays an important role, you can have a healthy and very tasty breakfast or lunch. Address: Sarphatipark 34.
De Wasserette – this place used to be a launderette (‘wasserette’ in Dutch) You can sit inside or outside and they also serve delicious sandwiches. Address: Eerste van der Helststraat 27.
CT coffee and coconuts – this former cinema built in the roaring 20s (Ceintuur Theater) is now transformed into a beautiful place where you can get great coffee, breakfast, lunch or dinner. Address: Ceintuurbaan 282 – 284.
Vlaamsch Broodhuys – a bakery where you can have breakfast and lunch. The sandwiches are made of their freshly baked bread and you can order delicious smoothies and pastries as well. Address: Van Woustraat 78h.
Massimo Gelato – owned by Massimo Bertonasco and definitely the best ice cream in Amsterdam. He was taught how to make ice cream by his nonna when he was a little kid, and later from an Italian master ice cream maker. The secret to making this delicious ice cream is its ingredients that are very carefully chosen. The pistachio nuts and lemons come from Sicily, the biological milk only from one farm and the coffee from Liguria. You can also order coffee to-go. It has three locations in Amsterdam: de Pijp, Oud-West and Oost. Address: Van Ostadestraat 147 H.


Festina Lente – the idea behind this cafe is that it is a place that feels like home, and it surely works. Not pretentious, just a very laidback vibe. In summer a perfect spot to have your coffee on the terrace at the canal, in winter a place where you meet up with friend, play a board game and have some beers. The food is good and fairly priced. This cafe already goes back more than 20 years, and hopefully many more years to come. Address: Looiersgracht 40b. 


Aan Tafel bij Landmarkt – one of those places you would like to keep for yourself rather than share it with the rest of the world. At Landmarkt (fresh market) the origin of the products that are sold is key. They come directly from local farmers, butchers, fishmongers etc. By looking at the stickers on the name tags of the products, you can see whether buying that specific product is a sustainable choice or not. The terrace of Landmarkt, which is located at the back of the building, is probably the best kept secret of Amsterdam. It is situated in a beautiful green garden where apple trees grow. The fresh products from Landmarkt are the ingredients for their menu. You can easily bring your kids as the big garden has a trampoline, swings etc. Address: Schellingwouderdijk 339. 


Bar Basquiat
– a young urban and creative cafe where you can have breakfast, a great lunch (Philly cheese steak, Sticky port belly buns) or cocktails in the afternoon. Address: Javastraat 88 – 90.
PARK – a beautiful brasserie located in the Oosterpark. It is part of Hotel Arena (4 stars). In winter you can relax at the fireplace that you will find inside and enjoy the great view over the Oosterpark. You can have lunch and dinner as well, although I wouldn’t recommend it (very moderate food and there are so many better places in the neighbourhood). It is a very nice place though to have a cup of coffee and enjoy the interior and the view. Address: ‘s-Gravesandestraat 55.
The breakfast club – its menu is Paris / New York-style. The menu consists of (buckwheat or buttermilk) pancakes, croissants, french toast and fresh smoothies and the plates look beautiful. The food here is truly delicious and the staff is great! Address: Wibautstraat 56.
House of Watt – in a part of Amsterdam that is not stuffed with tourists, a couple of friends decided to create House of Watt. Wether you are looking for a place to work for a couple of hours (with a nice cup of coffee) or visiting this city with children that want to play indoors, House of Watt is the place to go. It has a lot to offer: good breakfast & lunch, and in the evening you can have a potluck dinner. Address: James Wattstraat 73.
Bij Storm – a place where you can escape the crowds in the city. There is a city beach where you can relax while lying in a hammock or sit at a campfire. If you prefer some action you can play beach volleyball. It’s very child-friendly as there is a kids playground and lots of space. Address: Ijdijk 10.
Massimo Gelato Amsterdam Oost – see the wonderful story above at the location at De Pijp. Address of the location in Oost: Pretoriusstraat 89.


Conservatorium Hotel – located in a former conservatory, this now is a luxurious 5 star hotel next to the Museumplein. The elegant lounge has a very relaxing atmosphere and every now and then you will hear live jazz. A perfect place for having a cup of coffee after having visited one of the museums. Usually Dutch people don’t go to a hotel lobby to have coffee with friends, but the Conservatorium hotel has managed to appeal to Amsterdam citizens as well as tourists, which is quite unique. Address: Van Baerlestraat 27.
Blushing – also located next to the Museumplein, this is a good place for a delicious and healthy lunch. Due to its location, you will find a couple of tourists here, but it can not be called a typical tourist spot. The owner of this place is a Dutch singer / TV personality (Gordon), so you might see some Dutch people taking selfies with him. Address: Paulus Potterstraat 30A.
Vondelpark 3 – in summer definitely a fantastic place to have breakfast or lunch in Amsterdam. It is located in the peaceful Vondelpark and has a big and sunny terrace outside. The food is good and the coffee as well. Sometimes the service might be a bit slow but its location makes up for it. Address: Vondelpark 3.
‘t Blauwe Theehuis – Brouwerij ‘t IJ –  if you want to enjoy a bit of nature in the middle of this vibrant city, Blauwe Theehuis is a nice place to go. Its location is unique: a monumental building in the middle of the Vondelpark. It’s not very big inside, but it’s a nice place to shelter from rain. Summer is the best time of the year to visit, as they have a big terrace where you can enjoy your morning coffee or a beer from our local brewery Brouwerij ‘t IJ. They serve lunch as well. Address: Vondelpark 5.


TEDS – feel like having a coffee but very hungry as well? This is a great place for coffee but please order breakfast or lunch as well; their sandwiches are amazing! They open at 7 am so if you are an early bird you can order eggs just the way you want to, but you can stay here all afternoon and order cocktails as well. There is a large reading table at the back, or you can sit at the window and just watch people passing by. Address: Bosboom Toussaintstraat 60.
Lot Sixty One – by far the most popular coffee bar in this neighbourhood. Owned by an Australian, he made a true art out of making coffee. They do all their own roasting in-house, which results in them being the coffee supplier of many bars in this neighbourhood. Address: Kinkerstraat 112.
Kade West – at this typical Dutch eetcafé you are very likely to order a coffee in the morning on their terrace in the sun and ending up sitting at this very same terrace for dinner. The terrace has many hours of sun and the service is quick and very friendly. Owned by two local friends, they will soon make you feel as if this is your second home. Address: Kinkerstraat 87I.
Anne & Max – they call themselves ‘your living room in the city’ and that’s exactly what they are. Comfortably decorated with sofas, chairs, flowers, carpets, reading table and small tables, you immediately feel at home at this very cute coffee bar. Address: Tollensstraat 57 Y.
Bosco – at this place you can easily start in the morning, having an extensive breakfast and end up at night having dinner and drinks. Just a cosy cafe to meet up with friends and even play board games on a rainy day. Address: Eerste Constantijn Huygensstraat 9.
The breakfast club – its interior looks Scandinavian, but the breakfast menu is more Paris / New York-style. The menu consists of (buckwheat or buttermilk) pancakes, croissants and fresh smoothies and the plates look beautiful. The breakfast is truly delicious, but one minor disappointment: the service is slow and they seem quite uninterested in their customers. However, the food makes up for this. Address: Bellamystraat 2-h.
Baires – a small piece of Argentinean heaven in Amsterdam. At this minimalistic place, the only food they sell is: empanadas. They have a big variety so it doesn’t matter if you are a vegetarian or a meat lover. They all taste great! You can order them to take away or eat them at this place while you are enjoying some Argentinean tango music. Address: Bilderdijkkade 25.
Café De Toog – a very cosy café, visited by locals. For lunch they serve various sandwiches and omelettes but you can have dinner as well. On Friday and Saturday night they are open until 3am, so it is a great place to have a couple of beers. In summer it is really nice to sit on the terrace as it is located in quiet street. Address: Nicolaas Beetsstraat 142.
Koffie Academie – a good place for a good cup of coffee. They serve coffee from freshly roasted coffee beans and a variety of homemade cakes and pies, even vegan options. Everything in this place is for sale, even the furniture and the art on the walls. As there are quite a few hotels around and it is located close to Leidseplein, you might find some more tourists here than in other spots. Address: Overtoom 95.
Monks Coffee Roasters – the owner of this hotspot is a true coffee connaisseur. He went to Australia for two years to learn everything about coffee. This results in a bar where you can drink a very good cup of coffee and various homemade cakes and cookies.It has a cool industrial interior and the walls are filled with art that you can buy. Address: Bilderdijkstraat 46.
Sticky Fingers – this ecological pastry shop is located just around the corner from the Vondelpark. All the delicious cakes and treats are homemade and do not contain any artificial colourings. Decorated with a wall made of pink tiles and recycled furniture, the interior is sustainable and trendy. Have a look at the wall that is made of furniture that they received from various neighbours! Sticky Fingers opens its doors at 7am for the early birds who like a yoghurt & granola breakfast while they watch the city wake up. Address: Amstelveenseweg 3.
Wilhelmina – perfect small and cosy place for lunch. Wilhelmina already exists more than 15 years and has not yet been discovered by the touristy crowd. It has a sunny terrace in summer. Address: Eerste Helmersstraat 83-A.
Baksels – visiting this cute coffee place means entering the scent of homemade pies. The owner, Léonie, has a passion for baking pies and you definitely taste it! There is lots of choice: apple & cinnamon cake, sticky toffee cake, lemon & blueberry cake, banana bread, red velvet cake, five versions of cheesecake etc etc… A great place to meet up with friends and enjoy all this ‘Sweet-Goodness’.
Address: Kinkerstraat 51.
Massimo Gelato – see the wonderful story above at the location at De Pijp. Address of the location in Oud-West: Jan Hanzenstraat 15.