Café Rembrandt

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49-51 Morsstraat, Leiden, Netherlands
071 513 1400
Café Rembrandt - Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Café Rembrandt - Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Café Rembrandt - Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Café Rembrandt - Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Café Rembrandt - Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Café Rembrandt - Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.

Café Rembrandt Leiden Reviews

planxty planxty
88 reviews
What a great find, my kind of place. Apr 04, 2017
I have mentioned in the main portion of this journal about how I stumbled upon the Cafe Rembrandt more or less by accident and also how I tend to find bars that suit me in any location (I am talking about several continents here) even if people have told me to avoid them like the plague. This is by no means a "rough house" and after a scant couple of days there I was being greeted by the locals as a long-lost brother with handshakes or pats on the back as they entered and passed me. There was certainly no threat of violence or even unpleasantness and I do have a fairly well-defined sense of "situational awareness" as it was called in the Forces but means nothing more than keeping your eyes and ears open and knowing when to get out.

That kind of thing (handshakes etc.) pleases me immensely and is one of the major reasons I travel. Certainly, it is great to see wonderful, jaw-dropping sights / sites but I travel to meet people. I literally have friends all over the world through travelling and writing about it thereafter and that pleases me greatly. For a relatively uneducated man, I consider it to be a bit of an achievement.

Again as I mentioned in the main journal entry I seem to have some sort of ability to find places that I fit in and within five minutes of being in the Rembrandt I knew instinctively that this was "my" bar for the duration, it just had that feel about it.

The first thing I noticed was that it is still divided into a smoking room and a non-smoking room which is becoming such a rarity all over Europe by virtue of Federal States of E (aka EU) diktat as imported from the USA and as a smoker this was a great joy to me. I know smoking is a really stupid thing to do and I exhort anyone who may read this (especially younger people) who may be toying with the idea to forget it now. It is ruinous to your health not to mention your wallet and there is no merit in it whatsoever. I have been smoking for over 45 years now and will never quit, you cannot teach an old dog new tricks as they say.

There were large TV screens in both areas showing football (soccer) from a German match the previous night and I got the impression that Rembrandt was very much a "sports bar". I subsequently found out that they field at least one darts team. It was pretty quiet just before lunch on a weekday in early April but there were one or two guys in there. In the several days I was there I only saw two women in the place and one of them was there meeting me! The other one was there on the Friday afternoon when there is a card session going on which becomes raucous to say the least but never violent. My friend was the lone female in the bar when she was there and did not feel in the least threatened or intimidated so that is not a concern for the solo female traveller.

There is an excellent selection of bottled beers but I prefer draught and ordered a Heineken from the tap. I know that the Heineken brewery is literally a couple of miles up the road so I reckoned it should be in good order, and so it proved. It was well-kept and well-served by a guy called Tony who turned out to be the owner's son but effectively the de facto owner / manager and a thoroughly nice man who speaks flawless English.

I just felt instantly at home here and was engaged in conversation at various stages by different men who spoke English to varying degrees but even those with lesser facility in my mother tongue managed to have a reasonable interaction by dint of the international language of miming and six words which is something I have now got down to a bit of an artform.

Not that I ate there but Rembrandt offers a limited selection of bar snacks i.e. sandwiches, toasties and the like.

I was enquiring about the name as I had seen various references to Rembrandt on tourist information boards around the city and Tony informed me that the great painter, perhaps one of the most famous ever to have lived, that he had been born literally just round the corner on a street bordering the adjacent canal. As I say often and probably to the great annoyance of people who read my meagre offerings on travel related websites, "Every day is a schoolday" and I firmly believe that.

There is little more I can tell you about the Cafe Rembrandt. It is certainly not a tourist hangout, it is very much a locals pub frequented by working men in working clothes who are there to drink. It is friendly with well-kept beer and what else could you possibly want? It was just exactly my kind of place and I basically spent three days in there utilising the excellent wifi and constructing pieces for TravBuddy. After the bout of depression I had suffered and mentioned in the main journal, this was just what I needed. I was back on the road, in my kind of bar and was literally finding it hard to keep a physical smile spreading across my face lest they think I was even madder than I actually am.

Cafe Rembrandt may certainly not be to everyone's taste but if you like the same sort of places as I do then it is well worth seeking out.

Highly recommended.
Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
Cafe Rembrandt, Leiden.
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