In the past 15 years I’ve probably been to Amsterdam about 15-20 times. The Netherlands is an easy country for North Americans to feel at ease. Compared to its neighboring European countries, the fashion requirements are more relaxed, the Dutch speak a little louder; master the English language a little better and restaurants have more flexible hours (open for dinner at 5 pm) and often times serve more casual cuisine- so, it’s a bit like home. I’ve always been surprised at how Amsterdam receives such little recognition for its food. The expansive history of trading and colonization by the Dutch has contributed to the worldly flavors around town- Surinamese and Indonesian being among the most prominent. Beyond these ethnic influences you’ll find a health conscious crowd developing where cold pressed juice bars are rapidly popping up and organic, local and vegetarian options are trending in the hip neighborhoods. Another welcomed delight is the rise of artisanal coffee cafes; taking pride in roasting, brewing and serving the perfect cup of joe.