Thursday, April 26, 2012

Amsterdam Part 2

Day 3 & 4:
And the fun continues!

 Ahh Flemish Fries!! Our friend, who is from Amsterdam, told us about these. I have to be honest, when he explained them to us I thought,"What's the big deal? They are just fries?!" No! Lies I tell you, all lies! Basically they are fried and then fried again (mmm heartattack) and then they put them in these cute cones with a ton of mayonaisse. And now like sour US mayo, but like...real-awesome-delicious-I will-eat-this-by-the-gallon-mayo.

 Just for good measure, a few more bikes...


We decided to live like the locals and rented some bikes for a few hours. We had been staring at this giant green space on the map all weekend wondering what this Vondelpark place was so we decided to use our bikes to adventure over there to have a look. 

 In short, this park is awesome and massive and in every good way related to New York's Central Park, San Diego's Balboa Park, and San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. I like to imagine them all as best friends, or sisters, or hairy green relatives, or...okay I'll stop now. 

They even had a cute little garden cafe/restaurant. Guess what we ordered? Flemish fries. Yes, we are hopeless addicts now.

These houses were massive. No that's an understatement. They were like two mansions put together! Five to six stories for each house!

There was a secret garden in the city that our friend told us about. His directions were basically, "Go to this square, then find the unlocked door, if there isn't one just knock until you find one, then go through the building to the secret garden area." 


We were quite skeptical of all this so it was a welcome relief when we arrived in the square and the door was neatly labeled and unlocked!  

The secret garden is actually called The Begijnhof and is one of the oldest inner courts in Amsterdam. Basically it is a group of historic buildings that open out onto this beautiful courtyard and church. It was originally a Béguinage, which is like a nunnery for women who want to be nuns but don't want to take their vows.

And we ended our trip with another round of pancakes. This time at the infamously busy Pancake Bakery. Let me put it this way, if there is a line out the door for people wanting pancakes for a bakery that doesn't open until noon - you stand in said line and wait for amazing pancakes because there must be a reason everyone's here! And, let me tell you, there was! We had the caprese pancake with mozzarella, mushrooms, pesto, and basil. Christopher had the Belgium with whipped cream, raisins, apples, and nuts. Both were incredible. Amsterdam knows how to do their pancakes!

Until our next adventure!

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  1. Um... ahem... (cough, cough)... All fries are double-fried, my dear sweet cousin. Otherwise they end up soggy and yuck. But you knew that, I'm sure. ; )

    1. What?! I've only made homemade oven fries before so I can't quite vouch for frying them twice. But according to several sites (including this one Flemish Fries are double fried and that's where they get their crispiness. Hmm sounds like I should do more research (aka eat more fries to test out this theory).... :)