Brasseries and Bistros

lunch or dining establishments that are more casual than restaurants

Bistro, Brasserie, Restaurant? What's the difference?

A Brasserie is usually a large, bustling place with a traditional menu, where the food is good, but not necessarily served in the way of Michelin starred restaurants. In general, brasseries are open all day long, all days of the week.

A Bistro is a smaller and more personal restaurant with the intentions of creating original imaginative dishes. They aren't necessarily open all day or all days of the week.

Restaurant is a generic term for places that serve food, including Brasseries and Bistros.

Best establishments


Zoldering    €€€

Light and open wine bar-style restaurant with good service and superb small and large dishes

Centrum / Canal Belt


Brasserie NeL   €€

Located in the wooden Amstelkerk on a lovely square

Centrum / Canal Belt


Bistro Berlage

Recently opened modern bar and lunch/dinner restaurant on historic site

Centrum / Dam Square



Café, Bar & Grill at The Hoxton, open from early morning until late at night

Centrum / Canal Belt


Auberge Jean & Marie    €€€

Restaurant and wine bar with relaxed atmosphere, awarded both by Gault&Millau and Bib Gourmand

Zuid / De Pijp


Cafe Luxembourg   €€

Popular grand café with a relaxed ambiance. Lunch specialities are the Croque Monsieur, Croque Madam and Caesar Salad

Centrum / Spui


Floreyn   €€€€

Traditional Dutch cuisine restyled for today's gourmet

Zuid / De Pijp


Kaagman & Kortekaas 

Excellent French bistro hidden in a narrow alley near Dam Square

Centrum / Dam Square


Café Modern 

stylish restaurant bistronomique with charming, small hotel  on 2nd floor

Noord / Volewijck


Pastis   €€

Paris style bistro with classic French food and relaxed atmosphere.

place West / Oud-West


L'Entrecôte et les Dames    €€

Atmospheric Parisian brasserie setting. The place to go if you like the thin French version of sirloin steak.

Zuid / Oud-Zuid


Mata Hari   €€

Lively bar & restaurant with a canal-side terrace

Centrum / Old Centre


Maris Piper  

luxury brasserie serving lobster, truffle, Beef Wellington

Zuid / De Pijp

All restaurants listed here are reviewed by the editors of this website, who visit anonymously and pay for their own meals and drinks.

Price categories
€        Inexpensive < €35
€€      Moderate spend €35-55
€€€    Special occasion €55-90
€€€€  Expensive > €90

Avg. price for 2-course meal (starter + main course) for 1 person, excluding drinks