Amsterdam's Sweet Spots:
5 Desserts You Should Try
By QUYNH (STEPHANIE) BUI | November 23, 2019
Cover photo by Nhi Tran / The Amsterdammer
Although I’m not the biggest fan of Dutch food (my apologies to our Dutch readers), Dutch desserts can certainly make my sweet tooth tingle. I have scouted the city of Amsterdam and tracked down all of its popular sweet and pastry stores. Here are the five dishes I have managed to taste so far (with many more to come).
The Apple Pie: Winkel 43 (Noordermarkt):
Conveniently located in the popular Jordaan neighborhood, this small cafe has garnered the attention of both locals and tourists for their infamous apple pie. As a foodie, I couldn’t help but jump on the bandwagon and try out its specialty. Although my expectations were quite high, the apple pie was lukewarm, both metaphorically and literally. However, the buttery, crumbly crust with the cinnamon-infused fruity apple filling and airy whipped cream was very light and not overwhelmingly sweet. Although the apple pie is palatable, it didn’t necessarily blow my mind. But if you want to relax in a cozy and quiet place while nibbling on some pastries and coffee, Winkel 43 is the perfect spot for you! Be mindful that the cafe is usually busy and can only accommodate limited space, so remember to come in small groups at non-rush hours to make the most out of the experience.
The Chocolate Cookie: Van Stapele Koekmakerij (Spui):
Right from the get-go, there was already a queue for these freshly-baked chocolate cookies. At a luxurious price ( 2€ per cookie), I expected tremendous efforts being put into the baking process and the quality of the cookie itself. And this place certainly delivered! The cookies were warm and tender, with the right amount of moisture. I was in love with the outstanding chocolate flavor that this place offers. The deep notes of the cookie’s dark chocolate outer-layer complemented the slightly overpowering sweet taste from the center packed with melted white chocolate. Nonetheless, the cookie overall was too sweet for my taste, but I think a glass of warm milk would quickly solve the problem. Personally, I think the price is justified (just by the sheer quality of their ingredients), and it’s definitely a place worth checking out!
The Stroopwafels: Van Wonderen and Lanksroon Bakery
Stroopwafels are one of the Dutch delicacies that I have warmed up to, they’ve become my favorite. I decided to test out some higher-end stroopwafels and unintentionally discovered Van Wonderen while I was strolling down Kalverstraat. The warm and embellish interior decor of the store with the impeccably sweet fragrance captured my attention. I ordered a nutty chocolate stroopwafel for roughly 4 euros, which was, in all honesty, overpriced. However, it exceeded my expectations – crumbly, tender, mildly sweet, and warm – as if I was holding a bundle of joy in my hand (and mouth)! If you are a newcomer to Amsterdam and want to indulge in stroopwafels, this is definitely my pick!
Another stroopwafel spot I visited was Lanskroon Bakery (near Van Stapele Koekmakerij). I tried their coffee stroopwafel, and it caught me off-guard (not in a negative way). A deviant from the soft, gooey beloved stroopwafel, the ones from Lanskroon were thin, crunchy, and snappy, with a sticky caramel filling and bits of sugar on top. It wasn’t surprisingly unique and felt more like a snack than an ordinary pastry. However, if you’re looking to venture away from the ordinary stroopwafel, this might be the place for you!
The Cakes: De Drie Graefjes (Rokin)
This lovely bakery was on my bucket list for weeks because of their trendy Red Velvet cake. However, it was underwhelming with a standard supermarket-cake-flavor and slightly dry texture. As I was about to give up, I discovered their gem – the insanely delectable Carrot Cake. It had some fruitiness and tanginess from the pineapples and raisins, sweetness from the cinnamon and cream cheese icing, and crunchiness from the walnut, creating a well-balanced creation of texture and flavors. Although it was filling, I just couldn’t stop eating it! At the price of 5€ for a big ol’ slice, it is definitely worth a purchase! The bakery also offers a wide variety of baked goods, and since a little birdy told me that their cupcakes are also excellent, I will be making my return soon!
Honorable Mention: the Olliebollen (Biljmer Arena station)
Although olliebollen (“oily balls”) are mostly sold during wintertime, I managed to find a few stalls in Amsterdam in early November. These soft, chewy, glutinous donut-like balls were so addictive that I personally prefer them over donuts. I recommend trying them with some powdered sugar and pairing them with a hot cup of tea. I can also commend the food truck right outside of the Biljmer Arena station – their pillowy, slightly crispy bite-sized warm olliebollen (1€/each!) unquestionably make a perfect affordable snack in the cold weather!
If you have any dessert recommendations, send us a message through our Instagram page (@the.magazine.ams)!
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