Monday 22 July 2019

What’s brewing? A quick look at a few of the Netherlands’ best brewpubs

What’s brewing? A quick look at a few of the Netherlands’ best brewpubs

Have you been searching for a place to enjoy a quality craft brew along with some tasty eats here in the Netherlands? While beer snobs might quibble over whether or not these operations technically qualify as brewpubs, tasting rooms, or something else entirely, here are a few spots that combine some of the country’s best suds with great food. Brouwerij de Prael – Amsterdam, The Hague and Groningen Brouwerij de Prael was originally called De Parel and began brewing in... More >

Podcast: Fact-Checking The Apocalypse

Our regular podcast is taking a summer break until September, but we have a special edition exclusively for our Patreon subscribers, where you can hear Paul subject Molly and Gordon to a gruelling flash inburgeringcursus on Dutch contemporary culture. Find out, among other things, which building in The Hague looks like “a Gaudi church designed by the Soviets”, what type of tulips sparked the infamous bubble, how an act of brazen piracy forms the basis of today’s international maritime law,... More >

'The work life balance is my favourite'

Originally from Datong, Xiaolin Wang moved from China to the Netherlands to pursue a master’s degree. She now lives in Delft with her family, works in the oil and gas sector, and is co-founder of Stichting Chinese Mama’s in Nederland, a platform for Chinese families in the Netherlands and anyone who is interested in Chinese culture. How did you end up in the Netherlands? I came here in 2006 after I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in bio-engineering from a... More >

15 best budget restaurants in Amsterdam

Recent research shows that the ratio between Amsterdam house prices and Amsterdammers’ disposable incomes is the highest in Europe. So it’s no surprise that many of us are feeling strapped for cash. Add in the city’s steepening restaurant prices, and even going out for an evening meal is looking less and less affordable. But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are still several good eateries where you can have a simple meal for around €10, so you can stop... More >

Podcast: The Ban This Sick Fun Edition

There’s plenty to shout about in our last podcast before the summer break as five cities bid to host next year’s Eurovision, a children’s playground is forced to close because of complaints about noise, a proposed Holocaust memorial sparks local protests and the Dutch women’s football team are cheered all the way to the final. In our discussion we take the pulse of the coalition at the halfway point and ask if it will make it to the finish line.... More >

How to learn Dutch in an English office

Learning Dutch in an international work environment can be tough especially if English is your common language. Deborah Nicholls-Lee tracks down some expert advice. The Netherlands is a popular workplace: its people speak excellent English, it’s economically stable, and it offers a great work-life balance. It is no surprise that big international names such as Adidas,, IKEA, and Nike all have their European headquarters here, with Panasonic and Sony due to follow shortly. But, with expats now staying longer,... More >

Wynia's Week

What is the link between Jamal Kashoggi, queen Máxima and the international prestige of the Netherlands? It’s something to do with a visit to the Obamas  in 2009 but most of all it’s the Máxima factor, writes commentator Syp Wynia.  The country almost had an apoplectic fit last week when queen Máxima was photographed in Japan having a quiet chat with Saudi heir to the throne Mohammed bin Salman, who is often regarded as the de facto ruler. The queen,... More >

Dutch destinations: Haarlem

It’s the namesake of the New York City borough, the city saved by a finger in the dike and was the epicenter for tulip mania. Haarlem is a mere fifteen minutes from Amsterdam and should be next on your list of places to visit.  Founded somewhere in the 10th century, Haarlem was given city status in 1245. It is located on a small bit of land above sea level which connects Leiden to Alkmaar and its geography provided the locals... More >

Podcast: The Bonfire of the Caterpillars

It’s been a week of big-name casualties as the law finally caught up with celebrity gangster Willem Holleeder and Frans Timmermans saw a top European job slip through his fingers. While Queen Maxima came under fire for her silence in a meeting with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, one cyclist in Groningen probably wishes she’d kept quiet when police stopped and fined her for using her phone. And it’s been a busy week for Amsterdam’s mayor Femke Halsema, who announced plans... More >

Dutch newspaper comment round-up

Dutch paper commentary this week ranged from a discussion of the Netherlands’ colonial past to Queen Máxima’s conversation with Saudi prince Mohammed Bin Salman, writes Tom Piggott. The Volkskrant published a piece by former Christian Democrat MP Sytze Faber, on the cabinet’s plans for election reforms. Faber said that ‘we could do with fewer elections,’ adding that politicians are in semi-permanent campaign mode, because there is always another election around the corner. ‘On average, there has been an election every... More >

'The Hague is the perfect balance'

Elina, who often goes by her nickname ‘Elina Selina’, is from Petaling Jaya in Malaysia. She currently lives in The Hague, which she loves, would like to ask Geert Wilders who hurt him, and can speak Rotterdam street slang. How did you end up in the Netherlands? First, some back story. When I was 15, I moved to the UK for boarding school, and then I went to the US for a year to attend university. I decided that was... More >

Blogwatching: With my feet in two boats

Dana is a Romanian, living in Amsterdam since 2010. She’s passionate about the city and everything it has to offer. On her blog, she shares her discoveries, experiences and thoughts with everyone who’s interested in Amsterdam, the Netherlands or travel in general.  There is a Romanian expression: “Cu fundul în două luntri“, which means ‘sitting with your bum in two boats’, or in other words not being able to make up your mind about something. For the title of this... More >

Podcast: The Anne Frank Meth Edition

Cheese, canals and cycling – the podcast team tries to identify the DNA of Dutch identity in a week when the Dutch sense of order was turned on its head. The 112 emergency services hotline broke down, the women’s football team won a match with a late penalty and a midsummer Elfstedentocht was staged in 30-degree heat. We also look at moves to atone for two dark episodes in the nation’s history, the latest vaccination figures and yet more changes... More >

11 great things to do in July

Summer should be well and truly upon us next month, but not all the activities in our July round-up feature the great outdoors. Dance July away Contemporary dance festival July Dance is coming to Amsterdam again, with challenging performances that make you sit up and think. There are eight venues featuring shows by seasoned dancers and choreographers as well as new talent. Additional events include a ‘dance route in the centre of  Amsterdam inspired by its colonial past’ and free... More >

Weird places to spend the night in NL

Normal hotels can be soooo boring. If you’re looking for a place to stay in the Netherlands that offers something beyond mere conventionality, why not try one of these unusual lodgings? Crane Hotel Faralda – Amsterdam It’s become one of the country’s most famous and downright bizarre hotels, but it’s also among the most expensive. A single night at Crane Hotel Faralda will run you upwards of €795. It’s hard to dismiss the view up there though, and the experience... More >

Podcast: The Feminazi Apocalypse Edition

For every action there must be an equal and opposite reaction, as a university in Eindhoven demonstrated this week with its plans for women-only job applications. We discuss the proposals and the ensuing social media firestorm in this week’s podcast, as well as bringing you up to speed with the criminal inquiry into the downing of flight MH17, the Dutch women’s World Cup campaign and the first native wolves for 200 years. Plus: the butcher whose ill-advised nostalgia trip left... More >

'I am addicted to riding the train'

Following his retirement from the healthcare industry, California native George Sonsel began reviewing the dreams on his bucket list. Living overseas was one of them. He currently lives in The Hague with his husband Sven and volunteers for The World in Your Classroom, an educational organisation. How did you end up in the Netherlands? After retiring in the United States, I wanted to fulfill a couple of dreams on my bucket list, which included living in a different culture and... More >

Dutch royals show brave gesture of respect

King Willem-Alexander and queen Maxima were in Ireland for the three day visit last week. And in one meeting, they stretched the bounds of diplomacy, writes Peter Cluskey. The most valuable work of state visits such as the one by the Dutch royal couple to Ireland last week is often done well away from the glamour by trade delegations and foreign ministry officials. But rarely is high-level diplomacy used to reach out in as personal a way as this visit... More >

Swapfiets wants us to share our bikes

Everywhere you look in major Dutch cities, there seem to be bikes with distinctive blue front tyres – on the roads, sprawled along pavements, and even joining the sorry crew of lost vehicles dredged out of canals. These are the ranks of Swapfiets, a company originating in Delft which in five years has spread to four countries, 42 cities and some 124,000 users. The idea is simple: instead of buying a bicycle and having to deal with the usual repair,... More >