One of the big advantages of living in Utrecht is that I’m just 20 minutes away from Amsterdam. Like with many capital cities, I feel that Amsterdam needs to be discovered in layers. It is overwhelming with diversity and to truly absorb its flair, I prefer to go back from time to time for one or two days.
Eating Dim Sum
As much as it is a creative inspiration, it also is a melting pot of different cuisines. For a very long time, Andy and I wanted to try Chinese Dim Sum. And unsurprisingly the reviews state that one of the most authentic dim sum places is in Amsterdam, called Oriental City. The place is in the red light district and quite difficult to miss: it is located on three floors and lights up the whole corner of a junction, right next to the ‘gracht’.
Trying to be smart, we tried to book a table one day ahead. Yet, quite in the tone of the place, the restaurant only accepts lunch bookings at 12 o’clock. Otherwise, you have to go there, pick up a number and wait on the staircase. People walk in and out- it’s a non-stop consumption conveyer. And if it wasn’t for the 90% of Asian customers, I’d feel quite uncomfortable to state that their system conforms with Chinese custom.
Foodwise, it is advisable to order dim sum for lunch. The waiter gave us a long list with all the dim sum meals, out of which you tick whatever dish you want. On average, one dim sum dish is about 5 euros, but taking two per person seems to be sufficient (something we didn’t know before). Also, a big shoutout to their vegetarian options on the menu! Most of the dim sums contain either meat or fish, but this restaurant included a whole vegetarian (even vegan) section. We can’t criticize the food really, it tasted like we remembered the Chinese kitchen. In general, we are not big fans of the slightly greasy taste of it all, but the steamed dim sums really helped to make the meal a bit lighter. Also, the waiter was super funny and didn’t really show how much he’d been running around.
If you’re into Chinese food and want to escape the Dutch flair for a meal, we would definitely recommend this place.
After London, I believe that Amsterdam is truly an interesting place to do some thrift shopping. It’s so much fun to rummage through vintage clothing and smell the peculiar smell of second-hand texture… you know what smell I’m talking about. For anyone who’s not that much into thrift shopping, I would recommend walking down the ‘Haarlemmerstraat’. We found so many little creative shops with young, aspiring artists. In contrast to the thrift shops, they are a bit more pricey, but still very cool to look at and get some inspiration.
There’s still so much that I haven’t seen in this crazy city, and I’m looking forward to trying out new restaurants and exploring new places… together with you guys! <3