Travelling Wikos: Amsterdam

3 Jul

It’s hard to believe that we’re halfway through 2012 already! Where has the time gone? It doesn’t seem like months ago that we were stepping off a plane in Adelaide, weary from a month travelling around Europe. But it sure does seem like time that I posted about a few of our favourite food memories from that trip.

Our first stop, Amsterdam, was a bit of a let down in the food department- something that probably wasn’t helped by the jet lag that saw us only wanting to eat at ridiculous times, and the propensity of places we wanted to visit being closed. Regardless, we had a great first few days of our trip here, so here are a few photos!

Some much needed bread (brood!) from the Noordermarkt, the first thing we ate after getting off the plane!

I loved the variety of European mushrooms at the markets.

I’m of the Dutch opinion (that Heineken is a watered-down, ‘old man’ beer), but Chadwiko loved the Heineken brewery. It’s kitschy and touristy, but it’s still a bit of fun.

Although we neglected to take photos in our delirious, jet-lagged state, we did manage to eat at a couple of places. First was Maoz Vegetarian, the international fast food falafel joint. Not terribly exciting, but it was a first for us- and certainly not the last, as Maoz came to the rescue later on in our trip too. It’s not the best falafel I’ve ever had, but it’s light years ahead of the chain restaurants here in Australia. Considering the huge amounts (and variety!) of salad and other toppings you can get for the price, Maoz is a vegan travel staple in Europe.

Our last night in Amsterdam was the only one when we’d managed to remain awake for dinner time, so we headed to the closest restaurant that Happy Cow recommended- Bolhoed. Unfortunately, we were pretty let down by their offerings. Chadwiko ordered some kind of enchilada, while I went for the vegan dish of the day- which, when it was delivered, seemed to be mismatched leftovers from other meals during the week (spanakopita, tamari chickpeas, roasted broccoli, tofu omelette and salsa- it was as bizarre as it sounds), and was fairly bland. It seemed to be a hit-and-miss sort of place, which I would try again if it weren’t for the cat I saw wandering through the kitchen.

But as any good vegan knows, the Netherlands have one guaranteed redeeming culinary feature- speculoos spread! The delicious cookie spread still isn’t available in Australian stores, so I jumped at the opportunity to buy a few jars- one of the crunchy varieties of which was eaten entirely with a spoon (though to be fair, it took me nearly two weeks).

For all its liberal leanings, I’d expected Amsterdam to be a little more vegan-friendly. It’s not the place to head for a vegan culinary tour, but it sure is interesting and well worth the visit anyway. Besides, there are worse things than living off speculoos for a few days, right?

One Response to “Travelling Wikos: Amsterdam”

  1. Jojo July 9, 2012 at 9:34 pm #

    Amsterdam! I was last there about 12 years ago (wow…that made me feel old!) & Nick & I have it on our must visit list. I’ve heard very mixed things about the food there but you’re right, there are definitely worse things than living off Speculoos spread & bread for a few days!

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