Food & Drink

What's ACTUALLY Amsterdam’s oldest bar? We test the top 10 claims.

Published On 03/18/2014 Published On 03/18/2014
Flickr user dalbera
Café Karpershoek
Flickr user calflier001
Flickr user MollySVH
Flickr user Effervescing Elephant
Eagle Amsterdam
Flickr user Effervescing Elephant
Flickr user Effervescing Elephant
Cafe Brandon
De Drie Fleschjes
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1. Café De Druif Rapenburgerplein 83, Amsterdam, 1011 VJ (Medieval Center)

Directly translated to "The Grape", this well-established bar has been around since the 1600s and it looks it, with old casks lining the walls and gas chandeliers lighting a long, carpet-covered table.

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2. Café Karpershoek Martelaarsgracht 2, Amsterdam, 1012 TP (Medieval Center)

Located just outside of Centraal Station, this bar and cafe is old-school (seriously, it got it's liquor license in 1609), meaning you can sip jenever and spit tobacco on the sand-covered floors.

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3. In 't Aepjen Zeedijk 1, Amsterdam, 1012 AN (Red Light District)

This place is literally called "In the Monkeys" and the building dates back to 1519 (!) making it one of the oldest and most historic watering holes in the city.

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4. Proeflokaal De Ooievaar Sint Olofspoort 1, Amsterdam, 1012 AJ (Red Light District)

This cozy 18th-century bar and cafe serves a mostly local crowd a number of different specialty drinks and 17th-century “medicines”, which are also drinks.

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5. In de Olofspoort Nieuwebrugsteeg 13, Amsterdam, 1012 AG (Red Light District)

This place serves up authentic self-brew jenever, which is some of the best around. It doesn't get more Dutch than this jenever liquor bar.

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6. The Eagle Warmoesstraat 90, Amsterdam, 1012 JH (Red Light District)

Not easily recognized as a bar from the outside, The Eagle is one of Amsterdam's oldest establishments, with the main part of its structure dating back to 1495.

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7. Café Papeneiland Prinsengracht 2, Amsterdam, 1015 DV (The Jordaan)

The cozy interior of this bar/cafe is a throw back to the Golden Age, with dark wood broken up by blue tiles and massive windows looking out onto the Brouwersgracht canal.

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8. Café Chris Bloemstraat 42, Amsterdam, 1016 LC (The Jordaan)

The standout feature of this bar? It was issued the first liquor license in the Jordaan in 1624. The second most standout feature? Their little toilet, which is crammed into a closet fitted under some stairs, leaving the water tank and flusher outside the bathroom door.

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9. Café Brandon Keizersgracht 157HS, Amsterdam, 1015 CL (The Jordaan)

This corner spot has been an Amsterdam institution since the 1600s. It got its liquor license in 1626 and has been a favorite since, and now especially among pool players.

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10. Proeflokaal De Drie Fleschjes Gravenstraat 18, Amsterdam, 1012 NM (Medieval Center)

Located near Dam Square, this is the oldest tasting room in Amsterdam, getting its start in 1650. It offers up gins, a variety of liquors, and beer.