Despite unpredictable weather and a general shortage of space, Amsterdam has some fantastic terraces, often with picture-postcard views. Here is Eat Amsterdam's pick for when the sun does shine.
Restaurant Gespot is located on Prinsengracht, a stone's throw from Leidseplein. It is right opposite one of the many bridges over the canal and its terrace is set up on the broad pavement leading up to the bridge. It's a great place to catch some rays in the early evening – and Gespot’s wine list isn't bad either.
District V is a friendly neighbourhood restaurant in De Pijp. It's located on one corner of Van der Helstplein, and the terrace takes up a large corner of the square. This is the place to go for a lazy sundowner or unhurried Mediterranean-influenced meal made from local and seasonal ingredients.
Orloff has one of my favourite terraces in Amsterdam. On the same square as Italian restaurant A Tavola and Indonesian Café Kadijk, it overlooks an old-fashioned drawbridge and catches the sun most of the day. The restaurant and bar, which is named after one of the world’s largest diamonds, does a good line in open sandwiches on cornbread or Turkish flatbread, like the smoked mackerel with herb dressing in the photo, and excellent homemade meatballs in tomato sauce.
The stretch of Westerdoksdijk where Restaurant Nevy sits is still something of a wasteland, but that doesn't matter once you've found your way to the enormous terrace overlooking the IJ. Nevy is a fish restaurant, so it makes perfect sense it should be waterside. Sip, sup and watch the ships sail by.
Restaurant Open can be found in one of Amsterdam's most remarkable structures. A few hundred metres east of Nevy (above), it is perched atop a section of disused railway bridge, which has been stylishly converted into a lofty, glass-encased rectangle. Leading to the restaurant is a slender, elevated terrace, a great place to sample a glass of the excellent - and excellent value (€4) - house wine as you watch the world go by below you.
In the winter, 't Smalle is a cosy 'brown cafe' with wood panelling, brass fittings and mulled wine. In the summer, it has one of the loveliest terraces in the Jordaan. A dozen small tables overlook the Egelantiersgracht, with a few more on a deck almost at water level where boats can tie up and disgorge their thirsty passengers.
't Smalle doesn't serve the best wines in town, but it does offer a range of beers, including Zatte, an organic tripel, and Natte, a dubbel, both from Amsterdam brewery Brouwerij 't IJ.
Aan de Poel
If you're prepared to delay your gastronomic gratification, pedal out to restaurant Aan de Poel in Amstelveen. You'll be rewarded with an idyllic lakeside terrace, top-notch wine and Michelin-starred food.
Mon-Thur 08.00-01.00, Fri until 03.00; Sat 10.00-03.00; Sun 11.00-01.00
Telephone: 020 320 3347
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