Tuesday 20 December 2016
NY Times about De 9 Straatjes: Amsterdam’s best…..
De Doffer in the Runstraat is probably the only diner/cafe in Amsterdam that consists of two adjacent businesses: a day- and a night business. When most bars close, one part of De Doffer starts to flourish. That bar is also called: last stop before you drop. If you feel like having a good philosophical conversation with your drinking buddies, this unpretentious café is the place to start and end your night, offering a warm atmosphere, cosy setting and friendly bartenders. De Doffer also offers a tasty bite: especially the daily specials, the Doffersalad and sate are very popular. This meeting place forms the perfect base for people who have stories to share and for tourists from many countries. This is a café where every-one feels right at home.
Also located on the Runstreet is the best cheese store in Amsterdam: De Kaaskamer. This shop is quite small and yet completely packed with a variation of all kinds of cheeses. 200 different brands altogether, including a few European rarities found by the owners, as well as lots and lots of Dutch cheeses. All of the cheeses on offer have been prepared according to ancient traditional cheese-making methods. Don’t worry about the old transportation problem, the De Kaaskamer’s trademark travel packaging is safe enough: the cheese will stay fresh and your fellow-travellers will not be irritated by the aroma of this edible travel souvenir.
On the Reestraat you will find a shop with two concepts wrapped in one location. Pontifex sells candles and yet is also home to Amsterdam’s puppet doctor. You will find candles in all sizes and colors for any occasion, including weddings, parties, and ’spiritual affairs’. Allegedly, certain candles burned at certain times by certain people in a certain fashion, can accomplish such varied tasks as making someone fall in or out of love, cure depression, or drive away spirits. The store also carries an extensive collection of homemade essential oils, ointments and incense. In the same store you will find yourself wandering amidst an amazing collection of antique dolls, Jesus- and Maria statues, teddy bears, and Buddha figures. This is the domain of Mr. Kramer, a puppet doctor who has over 25 years of experience in nursing old-fashioned dolls and teddy bears back to health. His work place is in the store.
The Spectacles Shop on the first of the ‘nine alleyways’, De Gasthuis Molensteeg, is also The National Museum of Spectacles. It not only sells but also allows the visitor to travel through 700 years of art, culture and history of spectacles. All this presented in two marvellous museum chambers, established in a shattering premises dating back to 1620. Also in the alley, Waxwell Records sells, used as well as new vinyl records for DJ’s, record collectors and music enthusiasts. Waxwell specializes in Amsterdam’s most diverse and unique selection of Soul, Jazz, Disco, Rock and Pop records.
In the Wolvenstraat Laura Dols specialises in glamorous vintage. With period clothes from the 20’s till 70’s, sensational evening dresses and elegant dinner jackets and tuxedos. Everything can be found here to make a complete ensemble with glamorous accessories, including vintage jewellery, beaded evening bags, corsages and shoes. Laura Dols is a real hotspot for well known stylists.
Across the street is the Laura Dols vintage linen section, including bedlinen, tablecloths and napkins. This shop is also an Aladdin’s cave for children’s dressing up clothes – want to be a princess or pirate for the day – this is the place to come. One can also find more 50’s till 70’s clothes and a splendid collection of fur collars and coats.
In the Berenstraat is Stout offering a wide variety of lingerie, massage-oil and toys. A store full of surprises that fits in perfectly with the refreshing atmosphere of the nine streets, which is full of unique and original stores. This store is oriented mainly towards women looking to spoil their partner or themselves… Accessible and yet classy. Stout (‘naughty’) is a place with a distinctive collection and ambiance as the name would indicate.
In short: in the nine streets on both sides of a canal and linked by postcard-pretty little bridges, the first floor of practically any building is occupied by a shop or a café. One will find everything here, from special books, antiques and vintage clothes to the best of Belgian design, interior objects from curtains and drapes to home design, cosmetics, trendsetting fashion and unique jewellery. The nine streets is Amsterdam’s hotspot area for food and drinks and famous chocolate and cakes…