Culture, Eats and Drinks, Eats and Drinks, Lifestyle, Travel

The AmsterDAM Busters!

Ooh there’s just nothing more I enjoy than a good city break. Having had such a good time jaunting about Berlin earlier in the year, I jetted off for a cheeky little trip as a final fling before knuckling down  to the glittery grind of Panto-land that begins at the end of this month.

TO AMSTERDAM! Land of tulips, clogs, red lights and the sweet sweet haze!

The Holy Book

The Holy Book

After a eye-wateringly early start (3.30 am is not fun unless you’re off your tits somewhere surrounded by a rowdy bunch of mates), after reaching the city of canals our first priority was LUNCH. We’d been tipped off about a little place just a hop, skip and a jump on the free ferry from Amsterdam Centraal station called THT. Located in Amsterdam North in the former canteen of The Shell Technology Centre, this airy little cafe serves up a host of small plates perfectly paired with good beer for a lunchtime treat.

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NEEDED

NEEDED

We kicked off with some traditional Dutch Bitterballen. These utter TREATS are a kind of Dutch meatball consisting of golden, crunchy breadcrumbs encasing a kind of creamy, meaty roux (usually beef or veal) and served with tongue-tickling mustard. Whatever they were, they were BLOOMING LOVELY!

YEAH

YEAH

Appetites whetted, we tucked into a hearty lunch, accompanied by a few celebratory beers, all whilst overlooking the stunning city views- pretty even through the drizzle.

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My beautiful travelling companion, Jess

My beautiful travelling companion, Jess

Flammkuchen (a kind of crispy German pizza) with tuna, red onion & truffle salsa

Flammkuchen (a kind of crispy German pizza) with tuna, red onion & truffle salsa

Possibly the Daddy of ALL tuna melts. CHEESE

Possibly the Daddy of ALL tuna melts. CHEESE

Full to our brims, we took a wander downstairs to have a quick gander at some of the artwork that was on display.

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The ferry across the canal is super easy to find, just walk straight through Centraal station. They come every few minutes and are FREE! It’s like the tube but on water. Strolling down the streets of the ‘Dam (getting sliiiiightly giddy off some wayward green fumes) we jumped in and out of shops to check out the wares of the city. Well…when I say the wares, I mainly mean cheese and alcohol. Which is really all anyone wants in life anyway, right?!

A HOUSE OF CHEESE PLEASE CAN I MOVE IN

A HOUSE OF CHEESE PLEASE CAN I MOVE IN

Top churning action

Top churning action

cheesegasm

cheesegasm

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TOP TIP- all the cheese shops offer a LOT of free samples. So get stuck in.

Having indulged our gastronomic urges we decided it was time for a bit of culture. Well, sort of.

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We rolled over to the Damrak to visit the Sex Museum. And good lord what a giggly trip that was. Charting the history of sex, this place houses all manner of erotic curiosity- from paintings, to poems, photographs and pornography and everything inbetween- it’s all here. We were flashed, had a sex line call, got winked at by a ceramic bottom, gazed at self inflating condoms, and of course, sat on a giant penis. You have to.

My parents are so proud of me

My parents are so proud of me

HIYA

HIYA

Good

Good

a nice bowl

a nice bowl

A fine addition to any bathroom interior

A fine addition to any bathroom interior

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DON'T MISS IT

DON’T MISS IT

Essex is SEX WORLD

Essex is SEX WORLD

The Sex Museum has over 500,000 visitors every year- what a horny little bunch we all are!  The collection is incredibly thorough though, and although making us blush and chuckle at every turn, it was also massively fascinating to see how desires and attitudes towards eroticism have changed over the years. The examples of early pornography were especially cool- when women actually looked like women, rather than plucked and preened barbie dolls, with beautiful soft figures, pubic hair, beautifully pinned hairstyles and just loving life in all their natural glory.

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She's loving her life

She’s loving her life

CORKING HELL

CORKING HELL

a nice ornament for the mantelpiece?

a nice ornament for the mantelpiece?

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some nice natural pubic hair

some nice natural pubic hair

some lovely artwork

some lovely artwork

hi babe

hi babe

Eyebrows suitably raised, smirks fully in place and the blush still pink in our cheeks we made our way back to our hotel to spruce up ready for dinner, managing to totally BOSS the tram system at the same time. The trams are super easy  to use. Best thing to do, is to buy a travelcard for the amount of days you’re going to be there at any metro/train station and that lets you jump on and off all trams, buses and trains all day (for three days, ours was €16). Pick up a tram map and if you’re a dab hand at deciphering the tube map, you’ll have the routes under your belt in a matter of minutes.

AmsterTRAM

AmsterTRAM

A WORD ABOUT THE ROADS- be careful. LOOK all time when crossing the road. Most ‘Dammers ride bikes round the city, and are jolly aggressive along with it. THE BIKES ALWAYS HAVE RIGHT OF WAY apparently. So do look left and right. Multiple times. And obviously do your best not to get hit by a tram too.

KINGS OF THE ROAD

KINGS OF THE ROAD

That night, the Navigation Sensations (yes we gave ourselves a name, shush) strolled down the Western Canals, diving in and out of a few lovely bars and cafes for some pre-dinner beverages, taking particular delight in the pretty interiors of Ree7.

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what a PRETTY city

what a PRETTY city

Dinner that night was at one of the most fun restaurants I’ve ever been to- Pasta e Basta on Nieuwe Spiegelstraat. Draped in heavy curtains and with chairs with padded seats and little feet, this place feels opulent but without being wanky. If you like your dinner with a spot of entertainment, this is the place to come- throughout the evening, all the waiting staff sing live with the resident pianist, everything from Puccini to Celine Dion. What’s more, they all have inCREDible voices (p.s Hi guys, can we make one of these restaurants in London? Given that most actors spend most of their time waiting tables anyway, we might as well sing whilst we’re doing it).

 

AMSTERDAM- Land of a thousand selfies

AMSTERDAM- Land of a thousand selfies

AND THE FOOD THOUGH. After browsing the menus (gorgeously printed on old vinyl cases), we hand-picked our starters from the buffet, which just happens to be nestled in the body of an old grand piano, before plumping for a tasting menu of three of the best dishes. I’m still having inappropriate dreams about the truffle cheese ravioli.

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I went to starter heaven

I went to starter heaven

Truly a spankingly good night out, Pasta e Basta is well worth a visit, but do book in advance because it gets rammed!

High as a kite on truffle cheese and red wine, we nodded off, dreaming of absinthe, canals, bitterballen and 19th century pornography, already excited about the next day and already a bit in love with the city.

MORE SOON!

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3 Comments

  1. Holly

    November 14, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    We were actually in Amsterdam this very weekend. But thanks to bloglovin being useless, I missed your change of address and thus these posts. Bollocks, ‘cos that café looks really nice and the recommendation would have been good! Looks like you had fun though – I really liked it and would definitely go back!

    1. bloodyhellbrennan

      November 14, 2014 at 2:06 pm

      AH DISASTER! what a shame! But a good incentive to go back perhaps! Hope you had a brilliant time! xx

      1. Holly

        November 14, 2014 at 4:55 pm

        For sure! We were there for too short a time, so I’ll have to go back. For the giant cocks also, bet my boyfriend would love me for dragging him there.

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