Going Dutch in Amsterdam

When you're done trading in tulip futures, it's time to tiptoe through the treasures of Europe's most gay-friendly capital.

BY Billy Kolber

July 06 2009 12:00 AM ET

Meal Plan

Holland has never been known for its culinary prowess or native cuisine, but trendy, modern dining has arrived courtesy of restaurateur Bert van der Leden. His restaurants Envy (Prinsengracht 381; +31 20 344-6407; Envy.nl) and Nevy (Westerdoksdijk 40; +31 20 344-6409; Nevy.nl) and wine bar Vyne (Prinsengracht 411; +31 20 344-6408; Vyne.nl) are busy with a see-and-be-seen crowd. The menu items evoke a Top Chef competition challenge: creative and complex, though sometimes losing points for having one too many ingredients or flavors. Still, they make for enjoyable and memorable dining.

The Hotel Okura is home to two restaurants with three Michelin stars between them. Yamazato (Ferdinand Bolstraat 333; +31 20 678-8351; Yamazato.nl) serves traditional and seasonal Japanese cuisine. For more traditional French-inspired cuisine, head upstairs to Ciel Bleu (Ferdinand Bolstraat 333; +31 20 678-7450; CielBleu.nl), with spectacular views of the city or across town to La Rive (Professor Tulpplein 1; +31 20 520-3264; AmstelHotel.nl) with romantic views of the Amstel River and also Michelin-rated.

For tasty traditional Dutch snacks, make a trip to Brood (Zeedijk 66; Brood.nl). For great local beer, head to Cracked Kettle (Raamsteeg 3; +31 20 624-0745; CrackedKettle.nl).

Tags: Travel

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