Gastronomy in Amsterdam: Hungry Birds Food Tour
Chirp, chirp! While in Amsterdam recently my Mom and I did something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time now – the Hungry Birds Food tour. I admit, I love a good tour but I double-love a food tour, especially the ones I went on in Prague and Paris. Amsterdam is known for lots of things – canals, bicycles, a liberal social system..so perhaps the Dutch cuisine isn’t at the top of everyone’s list but it should be.
The nearly 4 hour tour with Hungry Birds founder, Zosia, covered serious ground, from fried krokets, raw herring to ridiculously addictive stroopwaffels. We tried it all and saw the city on foot from a unique locals-only perspective.
To kick things off, we met just outside of the oldest FEBO location in the city. FEBO is famed by the Dutch as yummy fast food option with fun vending machine-like ovens that allow passers to quickly grab gooey, cheesy, fried krokets on the go. I can see why the place has been around for generations, the greasy offerings hit the spot, especially for those that may have spent the night partying.
Moving on to tea with the freshest of fresh Dutch yogurt at a nearby yogurt shop. I was amazed by the creaminess and flavor of simple plain yogurt with a few fresh raspberries and graham crackers. Considering I eat yogurt nearly everyday, I’d say that I’m a yogurt expert. So, it’s my expert diagnosis that you need to try this stuff.Moving on, (if you’re counting this is only the 3rd stop out of 8!) we moved on to a nearby international market for chicken satay and tasty sandwiches. And then, my favorite…STROOPWAFFELS
What are these? Thinly pressed waffles with an oozy gooey carmel center. In the Netherlands you can pickup stroopwaffels from the grocery store but absolutely nothing compares to eating them hot from the griddle on the street. Nothing. (I know, I’m being dramatic again.)
Moving on to absolutely delightful mini-pancakes, called poffertjes, served with fresh butter and powdered sugar. Gah. I’m not sure what they’re putting in that batter but I can assure you it’s not legal. (More dramatic comments, sorry.)
After fromage tasting Zosia included a pit stop at a lovely little fruit juice stand allowing my Mom and I to briefly feel a bit better about all the yummy food we were putting into our bodies.
Before I go on. I have to ask, do you like sushi? Not just the Philly roll (though it is good) but real, fresh, sushi?
Okay, thought so. It’s delicious, I agree. Enter Amsterdam’s favorite street snack: raw herring with pickles and raw onion.
I know, I know. It sounds so gross. Those cute little flags are just a trick. But, I swear, it is AMAZING and reminded me a lot of great sushi I had in Japan. My mom and absolutely cleaned up our plates. The next time you visit Amsterdam, please, please, give this little dish a shot.
Naturally a pit stop at Amsterdam’s most famous french fry stand needed to happen. Served with mayo, ketchup and onions. Oh, mylanta. I’m already a fry monster, I don’t need an excuse like “the best in the city” to clean a plate, but really, these were the perfect balance of crispy, greasy, and salty. Yum.
Our last stop at a delightful little chocolate chip cookie shop really sealed the deal on the afternoon. Rich chocolate cookies with a warm white chocolate center. So popular, in fact, that the cookie shop where they are found (HERE) only sells this one cookie and absolutely nothing else. One TripAdvisor reviewer commented “these cookies are crack and (the shop owner) is the the drug dealer”. True story.
After the tour my Mom and I headed straight for the Museumplein and laid in the grass, recounting every last detail (and calorie) ingested during the tour with excitement.
I highly recommend the Hungry Birds experience – I great tour to see and taste the city through the eyes of a local. Zosia and her crew are absolute dolls and truly fulfill their mission of making the tour feel as though you are exploring Amsterdam with a friend. Great work ladies!
Check them out here: http://www.hungrybirds.nl