Amsterdam City Blog restaurants, shops, people and life in Amsterdam


Chinese chicken and squid at Nam Kee

Chinese restaurant Nam Kee on the Zeedijk in AmsterdamI probably have already told you that New King is my favourite Chinese restaurant in Amsterdam. It seems I am not the only person who thinks their food is good, as on a Wednesday evening me and my girlfriend Nina could not get a table on any of the three floors! We were told we would have to wait for about half an hour. We were quite hungry. Waiting that long was not an option, so we went to Nam Kee down the street.

We were in luck, a couple of people were just leaving and we were able to get a table at this newly refurbished (ugly grey faux-bricks on the walls) Chinese classic. There's a Dutch movie (after the novel by Kees van Beijnum) with national celebrity Katja Schuurman and the then not so famous Egbert Jan Weber (whose star is on the rise as we speak), named after an oyster dish from this restaurant (Oesters van Nam Kee, which translates to: Oysters at Nam Kee's).

Nina ordered the ti pan chicken dish with seasonal greens. Ti pan means the food is prepared in a cast iron dish, and is served, sizzling hot, on that same dish, placed on a wooden coaster. I selected the dry fried squid (without the chili peppers) from the extensive menu. We got some white rice and shrimp crackers (kroepoek) to go with that. Nina had a beer and I had Chinese tea.

Generous portions, great food
The food was great. The squid was fresh, not too chewy, and very tasty. The chicken was soft, the greens (Chinese broccoli and baby Pak soi) were fresh and crunchy, and complemented the chicken very well. The plate with shrimp crackers was heaped high. That's the way we like it!

hologram stickers in a raindeer. Très chi-chiWe were so hungry that by the time I thought of taking a picture of our food, we had already devoured most of it. I do however have this amusing little tidbit of interior decoration for you. Traditionally, cherrywood tables, inlaid with intricate patterns in mother of pearl are the epitomy of chic. But this is not mother of pearl. It seems to be... a hologram sticker? And if you notice the motif, it isn't very chic either! It looks like it's Christmas every day at Nam Kee.

Worth repeating
All in all, dinner at Nam Kee was a very good experience. Affordable too, between the two of us the bill came to 30 euro. I think I may be convinced to come here more often, and New King doesn't even have to be full for me to consider it!

Nam Kee currently has two locations in Amsterdam. Another location is to open soon on the Marie Heinekenplein. We went to the one on the Zeedijk (address below), which is open every day from noon until 11pm. See the website for the other locations and opening hours.

Nam Kee
Zeedijk 111-113
1012 AV Amsterdam