Even after seven years in Amsterdam, the city still surprises me. Like last weekend, when I ended up at three new bars: Bar Moustache, Hanneke's Boom and Roest.
Bar Moustache is actually as much a restaurant as a bar. Co-owned by Dutch ‘BN-er’ (celebrity), former soap star and presenter Tim Immers, Bar Moustache has taken over the building on Utrechtsestraat where Serge used to be.
The interior has been given the New York loft look (bare brick walls, mismatched fixtures) so loved of trendy joints at the moment. It attracts a similarly trendy crowd - at least until the next hotspot opens.
I saw plates of what looked like good Italian food going past, but most of the punters in Bar Moustache were Friday evening drinkers. The selection of wines by the glass isn't extensive, but the Pinot Grigio and Trebbiano (both organic) were good. More wines are available by the bottle.
One of the things I love about Amsterdam is that you can sail up to a number of bars and have drinks delivered to your boat, or moor and climb directly onto the waterside terrace.
Hanneke's Boom is one of those bars. Wedged into a piece of wasteland between Central Station and Oosterdok, it’s entirely constructed out of recycled and donated materials. The bohemian, tree house feel is enhanced by a large roof terrace, hammocks and beer crate stools.
Besides drinks, there's also a small menu of sandwiches, salads and simple Dutch dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Hanneke's Boom is a pop-up concept, although with a longer shelf life than most. It currently has a permit for five years so if this summer's appalling weather has kept you away, it will still be there next year.
Read my rundown of the best Amsterdam restaurants on the water.
Tel: 020 419 9820
Open: daily 10.00-01.00; Fri-Sat until 03.00
'City oasis' Roest is transforming a forgotten industrial terrain behind Rosa & Rita in Oost. Also backing onto water, Roest has a large terrace, urban beach and café/shop, where you can buy drinks, boxes of crackers, cheese, crisps, cakes, even milk and cereal.
I spent most of the afternoon here, digging my toes into the sand, inhaling the smell of grilling meat from the Sunday barbecue and feeling like I was discovering Amsterdam all over again.
Roest also organises regular events, such as The Worst Day of the Year sausage and cider festival (worst is the Dutch word for sausage) on August 28, and the Sunday Market on September 18. Check the website for details.
Czaar Peterstraat 213
Tel: 020 308 0283
Open: daily midday to 01:00; Fri-Sat until 03:00
Mon-Thur 09.00-01.00; Fri-Sat until 03.00; Sun 10.00-01.00
Telephone: 020 428 1074
Web: go directly to homepage