While staying in Amsterdam for our honeymoon, we discovered an awesome food market called Foodhallen (aka “food hall”). It was an awesome opportunity to see what Dutch pop up kitchens have to offer and to enjoy Dutch food on a shoestring.
Located about 100 meters from our hotel, Hotel De Hallen, and I admit we ate there most nights just because it was such great value.
Benefits of Visiting DeHallen Foodhall
- Enjoy a range of local favourites as well as international dishes.
- Enjoy vegan or vegetarian food on a shoestring.
- Listen to local musicians entertaining the local crowd.
- Large, central and reasonably priced bar if you want a glass of Prosecco or wine.
- Easy to get to on a tram from central Amsterdam (about 12 minute ride from Damrak).
5 Hit & Miss Dishes from Foodhallen
HIT: Raclette from Caulils Kaas
RACLETTE! “Watch me now, whoop whoop, shake it baby!” Yes, this stuff gets me grooving! The KING of the deliciously rich and gooey, sinful and disgustingly awesome TOASTED CHEESE sandwich with SO much *boom pow*!
Yes, this is how good these cheese sandwich taste. It so rich it almost tastes like Marmite. Yes, the flavour is THAT deep! I bought it from Caulils Kaas, a notable store within the food hall. Hot, gooey, crunchy, rich and salty; pair it with a glass of bubbly and you’re good to go!
I may or may not have had this more than once on our short trip to Amsterdam…
[2019 Update: Dutch journalists still list Caulils at De Hallen, but it’s not listed on the official website.]
HIT: Bitterballen from De Ballen Bar
Is a trip to Holland complete with some kind of crumbed deep fried ball or log? No. Another absolute Dutch classic, bitterballen, were high on my “to-try” list.
Essentially croquets (deep-fried mash potato balls), De BallenBar offers a number of bitterballen with different flavorings including Tom Kah Kai, Boulle Bouisse (seafood stew), pork, dutch cheese and truffle. All served with lovely mustard for a touch of acid, yum!
They’re also crunchy and gooey and are a good taste of what Amsterdam is all about: self indulgence.
HIT: Waygu Burgers from The Butcher
As much as we love Dutch food, a taste of home is always welcomed for us meat munching South Africans. We were impressed when we saw this wagu burger stand but weren’t sure if they would be good or not. Well, we can vouch for them, delicious!
Called The Butcher, they cooked the burgers to absolute perfection (medium, yes please!), topped with melty cheese and fresh garnish. These burgers were hot off the griddle and just what we needed after a days of deep-fried action. (Although, I should note that their fries were good too! 🙈)
MISS: Waffles and Yoghurt from Yogert Fruz
It had to be done! A Nutella waffle with frozen yoghurt. I LOVE frozen yoghurt and the combination worked super well with Nutella. But, unfortunately, this was a case where things looked better than they tasted. Boo.
The waffles are made in the morning/afternoon and then heated up. There’s really no excuse to serve reheated food unless the nature of the food has a long cooking time (this stews or curries). As good as it looks (and the toppings were delicious) don’t go out your way to buy one.
[2019 Update: It seems this is no longer available at De Hallen so that’s good.]
MISS: Vegetarian Wraps – The Green Brothers
By the end of the week I was a little tired of fast-food so I opted in for a vegetarian wrap on our last night. While it was positively freezing in Amsterdam, I just had to have something fresh and healthy.
Sadly, it wasn’t great due to being very dry (I’m not someone who generally requires a lot of sauce anyway), but it was a pity considering vegetarian and vegan food has progressed so much over the last 10 years. I’m happy I had it because it was what I needed after a long week of Dutch cheese, but again, don’t go out your way to have one unless you’re really missing something healthy.
Final Review Notes
There are also a number of seafood and bakery type stands, however, I don’t eat seafood so it wouldn’t have been fair to mention them.
I really enjoyed our evenings at De Hallen’s Foodhallen and would happily visit again. It was nice to see how the vibe changed from night to night and if I recall correctly, Monday nights and Wednesday nights seem to be quite a vibe.