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Taps: 15 / Bottles: 350
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 19 | Reviews: 16 | Display Reviews Only:
4.64/5 rDev +8.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
If only I lived closer to the Amsterdam Cafe; if only. I found the selection here very good. I mean, Heretic on-tap works for me. And normally I don't really dig the whole coolers in plain sight thing as it tends to come off as tacky and drab in so many places. But here it was a nice touch and fit in well. The bartender was sweet and pleasant. Even when one of the douchey customers outside made some snobby comment about a song playing, she just smiled and played it off, showing that out of the two of them, she was clearly blessed with a greater personality. Can't wait to get back to this place. Probably wouldn't be a spot for everyone though as it's technically in The Tenderloin.
04-16-2012 07:34:39 | More by RblWthACoz
4.3/5 rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
Strolled in here with a couple of friends last night. We initially went to Edinburgh Castle (across the street), but wanted a place that was a bit mellower/quieter. Amsterdam Cafe was a good choice.
This place is tiny. Seating accommodations for about 20; standing room only could probably fit 45-50. Amsterdam Cafe has two rooms: the bar area in the front of the establishment, and an open space with a couple of tables in the back. Lucky for us, the crowd was light, and we were able to snag a table in the back room.
The draft selection was intriguing, and the bottle selection was very impressive! I spotted Sculpin, DFH Sahtea, Avery Maharaja, and a host of other top-notch American micros. There were also a TON of Belgian ales, too. According to the bartender, they had over 200 bottled beers in stock. The draft selection included a lot of hoppy west coast ales (Lagunitas IPA, Ballast Point Big Eye IPA, Ranger IPA, to name a few) along with Piraat and Trappist Westmalle Tripel. They also carried Lagunitas Fusion 2, which I've never seen on-tap anywhere besides the brewery.
My friends and I chatted in the back for several hours, never struggling to hear each other over the music. The overall vibe was mellow and artsy, and the majority of the crowd was in their twenties. Very comfortable, but borderline too slow/relaxed.
I'm sure I'll be back here at some point. I see (from the review below) that they've hosted beer tastings, and that makes me like it even more. If you're in the city for an extended period of time, check out Amsterdam Cafe!
08-21-2010 18:39:48 | More by ThreeWiseMen
4.09/5 rDev -4.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | $$$
Another SF dive bar with dreadlocks and weed in the air. The locals sure do love their good beer, weed, and non-showers (ha ha).
A decent selection of beers, nothing to write home about IMO. The bartender was friendly which is a rarity nowadays, and tried to be helpful with a couple of questions I had.
Lots of lounging area out back with locals melting into the sofas, a man yelling the "C" word at the TV at the front bar also. We had one and we were done. The beer selection was not enough to keep us dealing with that level of "diveyness".
Very close walk from our hotel though!
05-17-2013 01:51:27 | More by brewandbbq
4.2/5 rDev -2.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $
It took a return visit to San Francisco for me to visit the Amsterdam Café. Don’t know why I never made it there while I was living in the bay, as I have earned a reputation for sniffing out good beer bars. Plus its right off the 38, smack dab in the middle of the ‘loin. (I meant that as a selling point, but I can see how it could be taken the other way…)
This place is visually unappealing—it’s like a SF ‘dive bar’, perhaps unintentionally. All the elements are there: the low-budget décor, the flat monocolor (red) paint… but I can imagine given some more time some real character will develop out of the decorations and artwork displayed on the walls.
The tap selection the day I visited was decent. There were a few curiosity picks and some rarities (Stillwater!) at prices about par for that area of town. The real treat, however, was trying my first bottle of Fantome! This was one time where I was glad I asked to see the bottle list. Seemed like a friendly group of regulars hang out here and I definitely hope to return and join them in conversation some day.
01-09-2012 22:03:47 | More by elNopalero
4.5/5 rDev +4.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
Made the trek down to Amsterdam Cafe a few times during my AGU stay in San Francisco.
When I walked in, I saw taps of Bear Republic, Firestone Walker, and Midnight Sun, and heard RJD2's Deadringer playing over the stereo. I knew I'd fit right in...
Great selection, with 20ish well-selected taps and a sizable selection of bottles. Enjoyed a Kriek de Ranke, Rochefort 10, Midnight Sun Cohoho Xmas IIPA, Hair of the Dog Adam, Port Older Viscosity, and some special-release Mikkeller holiday beers. They also had bottles of Speedway Stout and a few other Midnight Sun offerings. Lots of Belgian and American ales. Probably 100+ bottle varieties in all.
Waitress was knowledgeable and made every effort to find the right type of glassware for the beers being ordered. Prices are a little high for certain things (e.g., bombers of Midnight Sun, pint of Bear Republic Mach 10), but perfectly reasonable otherwise.
I've stopped by this place twice now out of 3 nights, and plan on hitting it up once more before I leave. It's that good.
12-08-2011 22:31:24 | More by wagenvolks
4.36/5 rDev +1.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
My friend took me to the Amsterdam Cafe on a trip to San Francisco I took over the summer. This place had a warm and inviting feeling. It was a small place and it was crowded when we went
It seemed to be a good combination of locals and tourists. The staff were very friendly and knowledgable about the beer. Although it was crowded, we were served quickly.
The beer selection was very expansive and it included a lot of local beers on tap as well as an extensive bottle collection. I had a Lagunitas beer and I also tried a Westmalle Trappist ale while I was there.
This place is fabulous and I would definitely go there again the next time I'm in the wonderful city of San Francisco!
01-24-2011 03:42:58 | More by Chincino
4.26/5 rDev -0.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
This is basically a small dive bar, with a great selection of beer. Reminded me alot of my watering hole at home, maybe a bit more young and edgey, but none the less a dive with above average selection, so i felt pretty well at home. I get the impression this is more of a local place, but niether the patrons or the bartenders made the couple "visitors" (like myself) feel unwelcomed, as she explained that the drafts were listed on the board behind me, or that it was a cash only bar. I also chatted with some of the locals who were friendly enough. I was here on a Sunday afternoon and the place wasn't packed, but wasn't dead either (just how i like it). It was a great way to spend an afternoon. I'm not exactly sure i would seek it how as SF seems to have plenty of great beer bars, but this place was in walking distance to my hotel, so was definitely well worth the stop.
07-08-2013 14:39:03 | More by AngusOg
4.94/5 rDev +15.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
Went here on the advice of a bartender who worked here, and I was muchly impressed. Melissa, the bartender explained to me that she was excited that someone had related her name to the song by Mercyful Fate, and I knew I was in the right place.
Patrons who were friends of the bartender began talking beer with me, and the next thing I know, I was there for two hours, buying rounds and enjoying company. It's the kind of bar you can park yourself at for a few hours. Understand the danger of this and embrace it, friend.
02-27-2012 05:55:12 | More by LeeMarvin
British Columbia (Canada)
4.18/5 rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
A: I almost didn't go in because this place looks so average. Thank goodness I ignored my first impressions.
Q: What a beer selection! Don't be deceived by the measly 14 or so on tap. They're all very good but ask about the bottled beer selection and you'll be blown away! I can't give 5 because that's perfection.
S: 10:30 pm on a Wednesday night. You don't really expect the "A Team" behind the bar but that's what I got. I never caught her name but boy did she know her beers. I just told her what I was looking for and she knew exactly what to recommend.
S: More Washington and Oregon beers perhaps ... but that would be nitpicking.
V: for the advice and selection this place offers outstanding value.
03-21-2013 07:46:26 | More by EspressoGuy
Amsterdam Cafe in San Francisco, CA
94 out of 100 based on 19 ratings.