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


Summer in a glass

Living in De Baarsjes in Amsterdam has its perks. Like our Turkish corner market. We had one near our old place, and we have one right opposite our flat now.

Where it took me four years to coax even the slightest smile from the proprietor of our old Turkish store, the man from our new store I are on a first name basis already. We wave, we smile, we talk about the weather, he sells me fruit and veg. And he gives me tips.

"You should try the water melon, it's delicious." Me: "Neh... I don't really like water melon..." But I did get a piece for Levi, because Yusuf said it was good. And man, am I convinced! Juicy, sweet, refreshing, amazing!

I buy a new piece every few days now. Yusuf cuts me an eighth if I ask, and at around 1 euro a kilo, it's really cheap.

So it's chilled watermelon after dinner, and my best discovery of the Summer: watermelon smoothie. Works well with a banana and anything that has a little tartness to it, like peaches, strawberries or (gold) kiwis. When I told Yusuf about my newfound love for watermelon, thanks to him, he put me onto passion fruit for my smoothie. Summer in a glass, I tell you.

So if the weather is dreary, like it is today, and you need a shot of Summer, make a smoothie!
- 2 slices of watermelon, deseeded
- 1 banana
- 1 peach, gold kiwi, green kiwi or handfull of strawberries
- A big dollop of good Greek yogurt
Blend well. Drink with straw and umbrella!


Edelwise Festival: quirky and fun

Edelwise Festival in Rembrandtpark, AmsterdamLast Summer I was working on my thesis at a company on the other side of Rembrandtpark. Every day I would cycle to work through this lovely park with its lovely ponds, trees and fields, and gorgeous views. But one day a big chunk of the park was fenced off, what was going on back there? Turned out Edelwise was organising its first festival, right in our back yard!

Edelwise hosts monthly drinks and a party at Het Sieraad in Amsterdam's hot borough in west: De Baarsjes. Arty, quirky and fun are good words to describe their activities. At these experimental Fridays you can expect anything from singing saws to a workshop learning how to play the ukelele to of course DJs and dancing later in the evening.

Edelwise festival extras
This year's festival promises fun stuff like ping pong, karaoke, and silent disco. Also, just like last year, you can tie the knot at Edelwise! Of course there's good food, and lots of music. DJs to be expected, among others: Dotan (live), La Pegatina (live), Kraak & Smaak and the ever fabulous (and newly married!) Joost van Bellen.

Fancy getting married for a day? You can at Edelwise Festival!

More info:
Edelwise Festival
26 July 2014
Rembrandtpark, Amsterdam

See you there?!

PS Very cool: there are (limited) free tickets available for people who live near Rembrandtpark. See the website for more info on free Edelwise tickets for neighbours.

Photo credits: Peter Bezemer


Italy, palmtrees and time: post-holiday Friday list

Levi and I were on holiday in Italy for two weeks and came back last Monday. It's been raining and raining since we came back, but today the sun is shining, so here's a sunny Friday list:

    Palmtrees at B&B Lu Casale in San Cesareo di Lecce in Italy
  • I am thankful for holidays. It's lovely to just spend time together, focusing on nothing other than "What shall we do today?" And: "Where shall we have dinner?"

  • I'm also thankful for our lovely B&B in Puglia, Lu Casale, located in the very tip of Italy's heel. Our host Massimo and his wife Marinella were hospitable and kind. Eventhough they spoke little English and we little Italian, we had loads of fun! I wish I were still sitting by the pool in their tropical garden with its fullgrown palmtrees.

  • The lovely town of Gallipoli in Puglia, ItalyWhile I'm at it, let's also mention the region itself. I loved the little towns of Alberobello, Locorotondo, Otranto and Gallipoli. I thoroughly enjoyed the heartwarming friendliness of the people in San Cesareo di Lecce, trying to learn a little English and teaching us Italian along the way. I loved the gorgeous sea and the soft, sandy beaches. Truth be told, I'm a little in love with Puglia.

  • And back at work I realise: everything's easier when you feel well rested and sane. I wish I could always feel like this. I'm afraid it won't last, as I have a monster of a year ahead of me. But I'm enjoying this sanity while I can!

  • Another thing I am thankful for: time. The school year has not yet started. So for another few weeks I have loads of free time. Time to see friends, read books, fix things in our flat. I love it!

May the summer never end!


Fantastic icecream at Monte Pelmo in De Jordaan

Monte Pelmo in De JordaanSo I was having dinner in the Westerstraat with Matt. Afterwards we went to look for an icecream place that I thought was nearby and had always wanted to try. I was, however, mistaken: it turned out not to be where I thought it was. While we were wandering rather aimlessly, hoping to still run into the joint, I saw a man eating an icecream. He claimed it was very good and pointed us to a little street. "That's not the one I meant!" I told Matt, but he figured icecream that I did not mean was better than not finding any icecream at all. And boy, was I not sorry!

Monte Pelmo is situated in a charming little street called the Anjeliersstraat in the Amsterdam neighbourhood called De Jordaan. They have a selection of around thirty different favours of icecream. Mundane ones, like lemon sorbet, strawberry and chocolate. But also more exotic ones, like lemon cheesecake, after eight, and a pretty pink bubble gum flavour.

The bubble gum, I am astonished to report, tastes exactly like bubble gum. I had the inclination to stick out my tongue to blow a bubble when I put it in my mouth! The lemon cheesecake flavour also tastes exactly as a good lemon cheesecake should. The strawberry is also very good: sweet, but fragrant. The lemon sorbet is fresh and tangy. What a wonderful discovery!

And a great way to end an afternoon in the sun and a lovely dinner with a friend.

Icecream at Monte Pelmo in De Jordaan in AmsterdamMonte Pelmo
Anjeliersstraat 272
1015 NJ AMsterdam