There are so many things to love about Amsterdam…and Dutch beer is one of them. We are not talking about mass-produced Dutch beer; we are talking about good Amsterdam beer, Amsterdam Craft Beer.
The Netherlands has a long history as a beer producing country – but it has only been recently that craft beer in Amsterdam has really taken hold. One of the first craft brewers on the scene, Brouwerij ‘t IJ Amsterdam Craft Brewery, opened in 1985. But mega beer companies (yes, Heineken) continued to dominate. Then, when the worldwide craft beer revolution of the 21st century whipped beer drinkers into a frenzy over full-flavored beers, craft breweries started popping up across the Netherlands.
Craft Beer Amsterdam
Currently, there are more than 600 Dutch craft beer makers – and about a quarter of those are in the province of North Holland, where Amsterdam is located. In addition to the microbrewers in and around the city, there are an incredible number of Amsterdam craft beer bars that are dedicated to serving these local beers.
On a mission to taste the best beer in Amsterdam, we sought out both local breweries and craft beer dedicated tap rooms (often called Proeflokaal, which means Tasting Room). The best breweries in Amsterdam are concocting a range of brews – from hoppy IPAs to tart sour beers to elegant stouts – and the best beer bars in Amsterdam are serving them. Sipping the tasty, fresh libations is an essential Amsterdam experience.
Famous Dutch Beer Brands: Amstel Bier and Heineken
Before we dive into our “Best Craft Beer Amsterdam” list, we feel compelled to give a tip of the hat to the well-recognized, big-brand Netherlands beer companies. While we think the best Dutch beers come from local microbreweries, it would be contrite to write about Amsterdam beer and not at least mention two Amsterdam beer brands that are known worldwide: Heineken and Amstel.
For more than 150 years, Heineken beer – a pale Dutch lager – has been in production in the Netherlands. The Heineken Beer company is an international success, now owning more than 165 breweries in more than 70 countries. The original Heineken Brewery is located just south of Central Amsterdam. Although beer is no longer brewed at the facility, visitors can learn about the history (and get a taste) of the beer at the Heineken Experience Museum, which now occupies the building. Buy Your Ticket Now!
Amstel Beer has an equally long history in Amsterdam; the company was founded in 1870. As early as 1883, Amstel Amsterdam beer was being exported to other countries and, in 1954, they began exporting canned beers (the first Dutch brewery to do so). However, in the 1960s, Heineken bought Amstel. Not long after, the Amstel Brewery in Amsterdam closed, and production of the beer was moved to the main Heineken facilities. So, sorry folks; if you are looking for an Amstel Brewery Tour in Amsterdam, you won’t find it.
Okay, enough about beer we don’t drink! It’s time to move on to what we really want to talk about: Craft Beer Bars Amsterdam.
The Best Amsterdam Craft Beer Bars
Our list of craft beer bars in Amsterdam includes the best pubs in the city that pour local craft draft beers. Because what’s on tap is constantly changing, we also provide an Amsterdam Beer Guide that features top Netherlands craft beer companies that you will likely see on tap lists at tasting rooms. Due to there being so many craft beer bars spread across the city, we have segmented our list into areas: North, East, South and West.
For each of the craft beer bars in Amsterdam we include a link to Google Maps – and a Best Beer Bars Amsterdam Map at the end of the post – so that fellow beer enthusiasts can easily find their way. (Trust us: it’s worth it to make the trek out of Centrum to get a taste of Amsterdam local beer!)
Additionally, we offer tips on beer tasting in Amsterdam and brewhouse tours at the end of the post. It’s also important to note that hours of operation fluctuate, so we advise that you check opening and closing times of each bar before heading to it; some tasting rooms are only open on weekends or evenings.
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North (Amsterdam Noord)
The lesser-visited neighborhood to the north of Amsterdam Centraal is home to two of our favorite Amsterdam craft breweries – and both have phenomenal tap rooms! Pro Tip: The Noord District is across the IJ waterway, but visitors can easily get there by taking one of the free ferries.
MAP. Within moments of stepping inside Oedipus Brewing, we already had it pegged as the Best Brewery in Amsterdam. The cavernous warehouse space is shabby chic with a colorful palette that matches their fun, eye-catching beer labels. The bar has 12 drafts on tap and the attentive – yet chill – bar staff are helpful with suggestions. Their outstanding beer is brewed on site in the tanks just behind the bar.
Pro Tip: Be sure to check out the Oedipus Amsterdam Brewery Menu! Featuring burgers from The Beef Chief – they are out-of-this-world delicious and named after songs from the Clash!
Walhalla Craft Beer Bar Amsterdam
MAP. Walhalla Brouwerij – located just a short walk from Oedipus – is an absolute gem of a brewery. The intimate garage is filled with the sublime scent of grains and wort. In addition to their standard range of beers, they offer seasonals on tap and a few special brews in cans. A comfortable spot to hang out, they offer a few bar snacks and allow guests to order in from nearby eateries, too.
East (Amsterdam Oost)
Just an easy stroll or quick tram ride from Central, Amsterdam Oost is a residential neighborhood that is packed with local craft beer hangouts.
Brouwerij ‘t IJ Amsterdam (a.k.a. Windmill Brewery Amsterdam)
MAP. A pioneer of the craft beers of Amsterdam, Brouwerij ‘t IJ was established in the 1980s when lagers ruled. The first brews were Belgium-style beers – but the core range now includes a diverse choice of beers, including a selection of organic beers, as well as inventive seasonals. The first Amsterdam craft beer we ever drank on our trip to Amsterdam in 2015 was from IJ…and we were hooked.
A jovial atmosphere dominates that beer hall tap room and beers are poured from a large, center bar. The IJ Brewery offers tasting boards, which is a fantastic way to try their brews. They also offer an IJ Brewery Tour on weekends.
MAP. For a corner neighborhood pub, Bar JOOST delivers big on local beer. Dedicated to the craft beer Amsterdam revolution and proudly serving 75 locally produced craft brews, JOOST is a very impressive craft beer bar. With a knowledgeable and friendly bartender, it is the kind of place that makes you want to be a regular.
De Biertuin Craft Beer Bar Amsterdam East
MAP. Featuring 16 beers on draft – and 65 more in bottles – the De Biertuin tap room is a choice place for sampling a fine assortment of Dutch craft beers. The casual bar doubles as a trendy eatery, where the burgers and famous rotisserie chicken pair perfectly with the local suds. Pro Tip: There is a second De Biertuin location on the west side of the city on Prinsengracht.
De Eeuwige Jeugd Tap Room Amsterdam
MAP. Walking into the De Eeuwige Jeugd Brewery Pub (which translates to Eternal Youth Brewery) is like walking into an old friend’s house…from the 80s. With classic throwback decor and heaps of board games, it’s the perfect place to go with friends for an evening of fun. Although they create just a small range of beers, they are full of flavor and go well with their typical Dutch bar snacks, like Bitterballen.
Want more tips for what to eat in Amsterdam? Read our Guide to Dutch Cuisine!
Poesiat & Kater Microbrewery Amsterdam
MAP. Bright and airy, the Brouwerij Poesiat & Kater tasting room is housed in a beautiful 19th century brick building along a canal. With a regular line up of seven beers, Poesiat & Kater also create small batch brews that can only be tasted in their brew pub. In addition to their own beers, Van Vollenhoven Brewery beers, which tend to be more traditional and based on historic recipes, are also produced at their brewery.
South (Amsterdam Zuid)
Amsterdam Zuid – and specifically the De Pijp District – is one of the hippest areas in the city. So, it’s not surprising that some of the best beer pubs in Amsterdam are found in Zuid.
MAP. Without a doubt, Foeders is one of the best pubs in Amsterdam for craft beer aficionados. The establishment is a small, local tap room – and Yuri, the owner, is everyone’s friend. Featuring craft brews from both the Netherlands and Belgium, there are more than 30 beers on tap and even more in bottles. However, what truly makes Foeders exceptional is Yuri’s attention to detail, kind demeanor…and his excellent selection of quality beers. Not sure what to order? Tell Yuri what you like; he’ll pick the perfect beer for you!
Cafe Gollem Amsterdam De Pijp
MAP. Boasting six bars in Amsterdam, Gollem has a huge selection of beer that isn’t just limited to Amsterdam craft beer, but features Belgium brews, too. The comfy and cozy Cafe Gollem De Pijp location is a neighborhood bar that attracts a relaxed beer-loving crowd. We didn’t try one, but the cheeseboards looked amazing! Pro Tip: Try the Gollem’s Precious IPA, which is brewed by Belgium brewer, Brouwerij The Musketeers.
Brouwerij Troost Craft Brewery Amsterdam
MAP. Operating out of a former monastery, the Troost Brewery in De Pijp produces a full line of beverages – from tried-and-true favorites to creative small-quantity brews (and they make spirits and lemonades, too!). Ranking as the largest independent brewery in Amsterdam, their beers are sold in locations around town…but nothing beats drinking fresh beer from the brewery! Pro Tip: Troost now has three locations: De Pijp, Westergas and Oud West.
Dopey’s Elixer Beer Cafe Amsterdam
MAP. Cafe Dopey’s Elixer is a hidden gem in plain sight! Located just down the street from Troost, it caught our eye as we walked by and we couldn’t resist going inside. Truly a local hangout (I’m certain we were the only visitors), we were surprised to find an astoundingly long list of craft beer on draft. The cozy space, fun vibe and good brews were well worth the visit!
Cannibale Royale De Pijp
MAP. The hip French brasserie, Cannibale Royale, serves up sizzling grilled meats, fun cocktails and a variety of craft beer. Tasty brews from local Two Chefs Brewing feature heavily on their beer list. Good meat and good beer…what’s not to love?! Bonus: There are five locations in Amsterdam where the hungry and thirsty can satisfy their cravings.
Tap Zuid Beer Pub Amsterdam
MAP. With 25 draft beers, there is plenty of choice at Tap Zuid. While most brews are locally crafted, there are a few international choices, and oddly, Heineken also makes their tap list. An easy place to enjoy a pint, they have board games for additional entertainment. For such a small place, their menu is extensive (although we didn’t eat, the food coming from the kitchen looked incredible!).
Craft and Draft Amsterdam
MAP. Craft and Draft may be a little bit out of the way, but the trek is well worth the effort (and it makes a great stop after visiting the city’s expansive Vondelpark). With 41 taps and more than 100 bottles of regional craft, there really is something to please every taste. And, speaking of tastes, the helpful staff is happy to pour small tastes of beers for patrons who would like to try before buying.
MAP. Alright, so we are well aware that Lagunitas is not truly an Amsterdam craft beer. In fact, Lagunitas is now one of the many beer companies owned by Heineken. However, in 2019 they started brewing Lagunitas beer in the Netherlands and opened a fun taproom in De Pijp. When we are really craving a West Coast India Pale Ale, the Lagunitas IPA still fits the bill – and what better place to get it than at TapKabinet (where they make outstanding nachos, too!).
Centrum (Amsterdam Center)
While there are many, many, many bars in Amsterdam Centrum, only a few cater to craft beer enthusiasts. We only made it to one in Centrum – but you can find more on our list of pubs we didn’t make it to below.
Eagle’s Nest Amsterdam (Arendsnest)
MAP. The Arendsnest Dutch Beer Bar in Amsterdam is a quintessential Amsterdam bar. With vintage decor, copper-piped taps and bartenders clad in formal black vests, Arendsnest exudes an old-fashioned ambiance. Their Dutch beer list, however, is modern; all 50-plus taps are devoted entirely to cutting-edge craft beer that is solely produced in Holland. Pro Tip: Visitors can book an organized Amsterdam beer tasting at Eagle’s Nest on Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays. Find out more!
More Amsterdam Breweries and Beer Tasting Rooms
Try as we might, we couldn’t get to all of the local breweries and tap rooms in Amsterdam that we wanted to. We spent Christmas in Amsterdam and special holiday hours prevented us from visiting all of the places originally on our list. Therefore, these are the Amsterdam bars we are looking forward to visiting on our next trip to the city!
MAP. The Butcher’s Tears brewery and tasting room, where they are intent on blending traditional brewing methods with experimental elements, is located in Amsterdam South.
De Prael Brouwerij Amsterdam
MAP. Located in a historic building on the same site as Amsterdam’s very first breweries, De Prael Brewery offers a range of standard craft brews and pub grub. Pro Tip: Just around the corner from the brewery is the De Prael Beer Shop Amsterdam, where beer-thirsty visitors can buy bottled beer from De Prael (and other local breweries). That said, the De Prael Amsterdam beer store is just one place to buy beer in Amsterdam…several taprooms sell bottled beer to-go, too!
In de Wildeman
MAP. The In de Wildeman Dutch beer bar in Amsterdam is housed in a former distillery in Amsterdam Centrum. They offer 18 tap beers and an astounding 250 different beers in bottles, with a heavy emphasis on Belgian beers.
Cafe Belgique Amsterdam
MAP. Highlighting the strong love for Belgium beers, Cafe Belgique is a dedicated Belgian beer bar in Amsterdam.
The Beer Temple Amsterdam
MAP. Part of the Morebeer Brewing conglomerate (Arendsnest, Beer Loves Food and Craft and Draft), The Beer Temple features American craft beers, as well as Morebeer products.
We spent a few days in nearby Haarlem (it’s only a 20-mintue train ride from Amsterdam) and discovered a couple outstanding Haarlem craft breweries: Jopenkerk and Uiltje Brewery. Find out more about these two Haarlem craft beer bars and others in our guide of Things To Do in Haarlem.
Amsterdam Beer Brands: The Best Breweries in Amsterdam
The number of Amsterdam brewery beers is so sizable – and ever-changing – that we could never list them all! The following Amsterdam beers list features the Amsterdam breweries that we most often saw on Amsterdam tasting room lists and our recommended brews to try from each brewer.
Oedipus Brewing: Mama Pale Ale, Gaia IPA and Panty Stout.
Walhalla Brouwerij: Aeron West Coast IPA and Loki Golden IPA.
Poesiat & Kater and Van Vollenhoven: P&K Smuling NW IPA and Van Vollenhoven Extra Stout.
Brouwerij ‘t IJ: IJ Amsterdam IPA.
Brouwerij de Eeuwige Jeugd: Belhamel IPA.
Brouwerij Troost: Mint & Fig Porter.
Two Chefs Brewing: Cannibale Royale Pale Ale.
Bruut Bier Nano Brewery: Gajes and Saison Bruut.
Jopen Brewery (Haarlem): Northsea IPA Cask
Het Uiltje (Haarlem): Track Down Pale Ale and Hipster Squirrel Porter.
Naeckte Brouwers (Amstelveen): SHIPA Moasic
De Kromme Haring (Utrecht): Inktvis Black IPA.
Amsterdam Beer Tour
There are ample options for beer tours in Amsterdam! Since we are focusing on microbrews, we are highlighting a few Amsterdam Craft Beer Tours where visitors can get a taste of locally produced craft beer.
Secret Beer Tour
Learn about the history of beer in Amsterdam (and more about the history of the city) on a guided tour to two breweries and two local bars. Get the details!
Craft Beer & Stories Tour
Venture into the vibrant Amsterdam craft beer scene with a local guide. Stop at three local brewery taprooms and discuss Amsterdam’s current culture over a fresh brew. Book Your Spot!
Self-Guided Craft Beer Tours in Amsterdam
Visitors who would rather forego the guide can create their own beer tour! Using our list – and map of Craft Beer Bars in Amsterdam below – visitors can easily organize their own bar-hopping tours!
Another fun way to experience different Amsterdam tasting rooms is to partake in the More Beer Tour Amsterdam. The challenge includes visiting all four More Beer bars and, upon completion, beer drinkers earn a T-shirt at the final stop. Find out more here!
Looking for a walking tour of the city? Use our self-guided free Amsterdam Walking Tour!
Amsterdam Brewery Tour
Visitors who want to go on an Amsterdam brewhouse tour, where they can see and learn about how beer is made, can join the IJ Brewery Tour – find out more here! Troost Brewery also offers Saturday tours at their Westergas brewery location.
Amsterdam Beer Festival
The Amsterdam Craft Beer Festival is held in September. For more information, go to the Craft Beer Festival Amsterdam facebook page.
Amsterdam Beer Prices
Let’s get one thing straight: Craft Beer tasting rooms are not cheap places to drink in Amsterdam. Beer guzzlers looking for cheap beer in Amsterdam should stick to Heineken and Amstel.
So, how much is beer in Amsterdam? Craft beer in Amsterdam is pricey; it should be savored, not chugged. Most craft beers are served in .25-liter beer glasses (about half the size of a pint) and are priced around 5 euros a glass. (Yep, that means a pint of craft beer in Amsterdam costs about 10 euros!)
Craft Beer Amsterdam Pubs Map
All of the Amsterdam craft beer bars on our list are indicated on the map – even the ones we have yet to visit (those, however, are marked in yellow, rather than gold). Use this link to Google Maps for on online version of our map.
We Want To Know: Are there any Amsterdam Craft Beer Bars that you would add to our list? What is your favorite locally produced Amsterdam beer? Tell us in the comments!
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