Pijlsteeg 31, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Wijnand Fockink Amsterdam Reviews
Original 1600s Dutch Distillery Jan 02, 2009
This is not your typical night-out venue/bar or club. Not a regular store and does not have the typical items found in a liquor store nor beer that one expects out of a brewery. It was a chilly, windy winter's night in Amsterdam, Manuel (www.travbuddy.com/manuel_s) decided to treat us to a special, traditional Dutch taste. He took Agnes and I, for a night out after the big NYE Travbuddy Meet-up ended. It was right about dinner time, Manuel insisted we did not want to go to diner first otherwise we would miss out on the delight of Wijnand Fockink. They do not open late: it is an extremely small store with room enough for roughly 15 people to socialize comfortably. Located in the surrounding area of the Dam, it offers a great opportunity, a window into the past tradition of brewing in the Netherlands.
It was crowded only because the room was so small, there were barely 15 people and we were rubbing shoulders. This distillery has been preserved in it's original state since the 1600s I, was told. Manuel was the historian for the night and seemed to comfortable with his knowledge of his home town. He said we would not find Jenever like we find here, anywhere else in Amsterdam. Wijnand Fockink is actually a distillery in the early years it was a tavern. Manuel ordered the special drink(Jenever) which turned out to be a special gin brewed right here since the 1670s when the distillery was opened.
This gin is stronger than John Walker's Black label whiskey only with a similar taste and smoother taste. Agnes afraid to try something new went with a familiar glass of red South African wine while Manuel and I, took the gin. I, downed mine as if it was a shot of patron tequila (bad idea!, please do not do what I did), it burned like crazy and I was instantly tipsy. Well I was not warned or told how the drink had to be taken until my first glass was down in my tummy and the heat rising in my body (smile!). Manuel and Agnes later told me that I, was happier and more conversational after my first glass of the gin.
Manuel ordered the gin with a glass of special beer called De Ryck, you have to try this, he said he was in the habit of drinking Jenever with De Ryck, so I did the same thing he did. At this point Manuel told me there was a special way to drink the Jenever; I had to bend down at the table and drink the top of the gin from the glass that had been filled to spilling point. Incredible experience I, had and the feeling was great, the happy mode instantly began and I felt like I was on a high I had never been on (smile!).
If you find yourself in Amsterdam, you must go to Wijnand Fockink, it is the true taste of Amsterdam and a window into another time, and another place. As I always say, why leave for tomorrow, what you can do today?
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” Mark Twain.
Part of the Netherlands travel blog
8 / 8 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!