Unfortunately the weather was terrible. Abysmal. Rain, rain, rain, and a bit more rain. We arrived at Centraal Station, and went in search of our hotel, the Nesplein V , situated just off Dam Square (a really nice hotel - I'd definitely recommend it!). It was too windy for an umbrella, and by the time we got there we were soaked through.
After drying out, we went for a quick look round, and ended up in Café Luxembourg with a cup of coffee and a slice of apple tart, and gazed out of the window as umbrella after umbrella was turned inside out, and then abandoned.
On Sunday evening we walked around looking for somewhere interesting to eat. We walked, and we walked and we walked. It rained and it rained and it rained. Eventually we ended up in the Nine Streets area, in the Jordaan (the prettiest area of Amsterdam), and ducked into what looked like quite a busy bar serving food. After a short wait we were given a table in the window, and then the BEST chips I've ever had - served with some pretty nice fish as well, though I've no idea what it was! Definitely a fantastic find. I recommend De Doffer if you ever find yourself in Amsterdam. I wanted to bring a placemat home with me, but realised it wouldn't survive the rainy walk back to the hotel, or the journey back in our hand luggage.
Best chips EVER!
...even in the rain...
The next morning we had brunch by the flower market. It rained.
We spent the day wandering around Amsterdam, ducking in and out of shops, had lunch at La Place at the V&D department store (they have a great salad bar), and headed back to the hotel to get dry and changed in time to head out to De Kas for dinner.
I was really looking forward to this, and it didn't disappoint. The menu is a surprise, other than specifying if you have any particular requirements (I don't eat meat) you don't know what you're going to get; other than everything is grown on-site, or comes from local suppliers.
We had: olives and fried celeriac with our aperitif of Dutch prosecco, followed by a pumpkin soup with lobster ravioli, hake and salad, cauliflower with pickles, then perch with tasty tasty barbequed lettuce! (seriously - this lettuce was the highlight of the meal for me!). David's main course was veal, if I recall correctly. Dessert was poached pears, with chocolate madeleines, vanilla icecream, and some yoghurty creamy cinnamony stuff. A lovely meal; though I was slightly disappointed to have two fish courses so similar. I'd love to go back in the summer and have lunch on the terrace there.
On Monday morning we had breakfast at a nearby deli, and then did a bit more walking in the rain. We popped into the kattenkabinet museum to gaze at the oddities there, before it was time for David to head off.
As it was still pouring, and my feet were aching, I took myself off to the OBA - the new(ish) library near the station, to have lunch on the top floor (another branch of V&D's La Place), and to see the Mouse House - or, to give it it's correct title, Karina Schaapman's Muizenhuis! Look how gorgeous this is - and this is only a tiny glimpse of it.
And then I met up with David at Centraal, and we headed off to the airport. The flight back is a whole story in itself, but I won't bore you with that, other than to say PLEASE don't use easyJet - I know I won't ever ever ever again!