The visit to the Biertuin was a very happy coincidence. We were scoping out the Tropenmuseum (one of the lesser known highlights of Amsterdam) knowing that Brouwerij t’Ij was comfortably close and we stumbled across the Biertuin. Many of you will immediately recognise that this means beer garden – we certainly did and immediately took the opportunity for an early lunch.
The terrace at the front was understandably quiet when we sat down to peruse the menu, but it was full by the time we left; a good sign for a Wednesday. Perusing the menu took a while as the Biertuin has a good selection of beers and food.
The beer menu includes the sort of tasting notes that you would find on a wine list, making it much easier for relative newcomers to the world of beer to identify something that they will like. If this is not enough then the super friendly staff will be more than happy to provide some advice and they certainly know their beer.
Based upon staff advice I chose IPA Is Dead Chinook from BrewDog, and this hoppy star really lit up my taste buds. Judging by the flavour and the broader selection of beers at the Biertuin, I would have to paraphrase Mark Twain slightly and inform you..
that reports of the death of IPA have been greatly exaggerated.
The American brewers have been pumping out high quality IPA beers for some years now and this has in turn encouraged European brewers to follow suit – a welcome development for beer lovers but there is some irony that the British brewers are following trends back to their own roots.
The vital statistics are that the Biertuin stocks approximately 100 beers: there are 15 draught the rest is in bottles. This is a constantly changing range due to the introduction of seasonal beers, new beers and new breweries. The menu includes beers from all over the world including the U.S.A. and there should be something to please any palate.
The food is also very good, not something that you will find in all beer focused bars. There was the expected broad range of glasses as you’d expect in a proper bar selling Belgian and other beers, and beer was clearly the theme of the decorations on the walls so everything is reassuringly comfortable.
For non beer drinkers there is a wine selection plus the currently fashionable gin & tonic selection with Hendrick’s and Fever Tree continuing their bid for world domination
The food menu has great choices for meat lovers and vegetarians alike. I had the chicken from the spit that was both very tasty but succulent as well. For non meat eaters, the hummus and grilled vegetable sandwich looked outstanding and generated very positive comments.
The service is very friendly and prompt (really!) and this is very much the attitude of the bar management and the staff who clearly get on well and enjoy their work.
The Beer Hunter will be going back to this bar, partly because they have a new beer coming called Hoppinator. The Biertuin will be one of the first bars in the Netherlands to sell this beer and anything with a name like that needs to be tasted.