Amsterdam is home to some of the world’s biggest names in beer, from Heineken to Grolsch to Amstel, and it often seems as though there are an endless number of bars at which to enjoy an ice cold brew. While there may now be many different beer bars dotted around the city, there is one that has truly won the hearts of the locals. One of four Gollem pubs in Amsterdam, Café Gollem has been around since 1974, and was the very first beer café in Amsterdam to serve up Belgian and international beers.
Situated in the bustling De Pijp neighborhood in the heart of Amsterdam, Café Gollem enjoys a prime location. Being so well-renowned, the bar can often get quite busy, but this is never too much of an issue as Café Gollem not only has a long bar that can serve many at a time, but also a vertical drinking area outside, as well as a mezzanine level for those who want some privacy.
There are not many bars in Amsterdam that can boast a beer list as impressive as the one that you will find at Café Gollum. There are fourteen different taps to choose from, with seven regulars that have earned themselves a permanent place at a tap, to seven guest beers that are rotated on a regular basis. When it comes to their bottled beers, Café Gollum stocks over 150 different varieties, with a strong emphasis on local breweries in and around Amsterdam, craft breweries throughout the Netherlands, and both small and large breweries from neighboring Belgium.
Beers to Try
While official beer tastings are held at a different Gollum bar, guests of Café Gollum are still able to sample a few of the different beers available so that they can make a better-informed decision on which ones to order. Some of the beers worth sampling are Gregorius, which comes from one of the newest Trappist breweries in Austria, and the Chimay Red, which is quite a rare and exclusive beer in Belgium. The beer menu is written on the upper walls of the bar, but if you feel at all intimidated by the vast selection on offer, do not hesitate to speak to the knowledgeable bartenders, who will be able to advise you on the beers that you are likely to enjoy.
Many beer cafés around Amsterdam take a keen interest in the food that they serve, but Café Gollum has chosen to remain completely dedicated to their beer. While there may not be any freshly cooked hot dishes available, there are plenty of cold snacks that you can order to accompany your drinks. From Dutch cheese platters to traditional smoked sausage, Café Gollum’s beer snacks may not seem too impressive, but they manage to perfectly complement the beer.
For those of you who enjoy trying different beers, and for those of you that want to learn more about European beers, Café Gollum is a great beer bar to visit. While it may have much more competition now than it used to when it first opened its doors, it has managed to stand strong, attracting more loyal regulars year upon year.