4 unique alcoholic drinks to try in the Netherlands (after finishing that biertje)

Looking for a tasty Dutch drink?

Maybe you are happy that the sun is shining or a bit down because of the pouring rain; maybe it is a nice Friday evening by the iconic canals or just a boozy brunch the day after; or maybe it is someone’s birthday or you just feel like “having a cold one” without any motives at all…

Whatever your reason is, alcoholic drinks can be awesome. Especially if you are enjoying one in a new country (like the Netherlands!); maybe for a vacation or a study or just a visit.

For our fearless readers who feels a little bit more adventurous, why not try something more traditional next time at the bar? If you’re thinking “Sure!”, then great! Because we can help you out with finding those one-of-a-kind traditional Dutch drinks to try out. Now set aside your borrelnootjes and bottoms up!

 1. Jenever

Don’t you dare call it ‘a Dutch version of gin’

Jenever is the juniper flavoured traditional alcoholic beverage of the Netherlands which later on gave us poor mankind the gin. Due to being the father of gin, you might feel compelled to throw some tonic into the glass and then enjoy it but beware; tonic was only started to be added mostly in Great Britain because of the bitter taste of the gin, not jenever.

If you want to sip this drink like a true Dutchie. Pour it in a non-other than tulip-shaped glasses and fill it till the brim. Prima!

2. Advocaat

No, you won’t drink banana pudding in a bottle.

If you are one of those old souls and think that jenever is more for the kids nowadays, then Advocaat is your true calling. Made from eggs, sugar and brandy; this custard-like alcoholic drink is both creamy and versatile! You can enjoy it in a glass topped with some whipped cream or even on your poffertjes, if you are looking for some extra kick with your breakfast.

Also being drank around Christmas, sitting by the fire and sipping this drink around with your oma, how can you not get into the -drunken- holiday spirit?

3. Dropshot

For those who just can’t get enough of the drop candy

Now here is something truly worth a try. If you have ever been to the Netherlands, then you know about Dutchies and their love for drop. That salty, chewy black liquorish that pops everywhere from gums to mints. Now it’s here to get you tipsy too!

With its motto being “it’s Black Magic”, enjoy this drink as a shot in between your rounds of a local Dutch beer.

4. Kruidenbitter

Served in tiny but mighty glasses

This golden liquid is an alcoholic drink that is flavoured with herbs and often has a bitter taste (hence the name kruiden-bitter). Bitter was traditionally used as a medicine but these days it is drank as an aperatif on its own. If you prefer cocktails, then you can use it in your mixes too!

As an aperatif, you can drink it in your tulip-shaped glass (we wouldn’t have it any other way) or use it in your next Old Fashioned.


Drinking is fun, drinking at a borrel is even more fun and drinking one of these suggested drinks at a borrel with some hapjes (like some bitterballen) on the side is well… Typical Dutch! Congratulations, you’ve made it and Proost!

What’s your favourite Dutch drink? Tell us in the comments below!

Ceren Spuyman
Ceren Spuyman
Born and raised in Istanbul, Ceren moved when she decided to follow her own Dutchie. Being restless by nature, she is now busy with everything Dutch by majoring in Dutch Studies at Leiden University while living in Delft. Her hobbies are petting as many cats as possible.

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