Proeflokaal de Drie Fleschjes

Words by Simon Difford on 29-Jun-2015

Address: 18 Gravenstraat, Amsterdam, 1012 NM, Netherlands
Tel: +31 (0)20 624 8443
Website: View bar's website
Hours: Mon-Sat 2pm-8:30pm, Sun 3pm-7pm
Door: Open door
Style: Tasting House
Price guide: Value
Food: Plates & dishes
Established: 1650


Amsterdam used to be the centre of Europe's liqueur making and as London's old breweries commonly had a 'brewery tap' pub so these distilleries had their tasting house. This one, the name of which means 'The Three Little Bottles', opened in 1650 and was attached to the Bootz distillery. Although the distillery building still stands next door, it is now the Tulip Inn.

The distillery may have gone but the interior of this bar survives, like a working museum to the distillers' and liqueur makers' craft. A wall of old wooden vats faces the long wooden bar with old crock flasks and jenever bottles adding to the museum-like feel. Acording to tradition, the bare wooden floor is dusted with sand.

Tip van Bootz, Bols and Gravenbitter products line the shelves. Be sure to sample one of the five brands of Dutch jenever and almost forgotten Dutch liqueurs, such as Half-om-Half and Bitterkoekjeslikeur, which are still served in this tiny temple to Dutch distilling.

We also recommend eating at Côte Ouest Café Restaurant which is pretty much next door (to the left when looking at Proeflokaal de Drie Fleschjes), particularly on sunny days when you can sit and eat outside, shaded by the cathedral.