I visited Amsterdam with the girlfriend for 4 days this week and wanted to sort something a little special for our last night. Couldn't have picked a better place. I wanted to keep it a surprise as I knew it would be the sort of place she would love, so the whole text message booking thing worked perfectly!
I text when I woke up, around 9:30 in the morning (much much earlier than necessary, I'm sure) and received a text message from Timo around half past three that afternoon to confirm out booking. Timo, it transpires, is an absolute genius and a really nice bloke. More on that in a sec.
Tucked away and entirely missable, you'd never guess what was behind Door 74. We arrived, thankfully just on time, and rang the door bell. A few seconds later a small hatch opened in the door and a face appeared. The door opened and a lady checked our names and welcomed us in. Through a soundproof door and in to the bar, she took our coats for us and showed us to our table. Within a minute she returned with drinks menus, nuts, olives and water. Despite my best efforts, I never saw the bottom of the nuts bowl, she was so attentive.
My first cocktail was ordered off the menu. The Eight Legged Ink. Absolutley beautiful. There was a great selection of drinks on offer but I am very much a rum fan and usually stick to anything rum based. There were not many drinks that were just rum based (.. it's a cocktail bar so obviously, that isn't a criticism!). I asked Timo (the bartender) if he could make me something "rummy", told him what sort of rums I like and next thing I know he is making a cocktail in front of me, explaining everything as he did. The result was a rum based manhattan and it was brilliant. Timo knocked up a few more concoctions, each one as great as the first, including "something with gin" for the girlfriend. As well as his excellent knowledge of spirits and how they work together, Timo was a great host. He provided friendly chat about rum (which I am quite enthusiastic about) and never let our water glasses run dry.
The cocktails range between €13 an €15 but trust me, the experience and the quality of the drinks makes this absolutely worth it. I know that when we think about our trip to Amsterdam, the first thing we will both remember is Door 74 and how great a time we had.
If you want to do something really memorable to wrap up a trip to Amsterdam, make this it. You won't regret it.
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