De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle)

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De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle)De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle)
34 Ratings
De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle)De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle)

Type: Store

Raamsteeg 3
Amsterdam, 1012 VZ

+31 (0)20 624 0745

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Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-04-2006

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Ratings: 34 |  Reviews: 34
Photo of koopa
4.65/5  rDev +1.1%

Oh the Cracked Kettle is another "must do" when in Amsterdam. It's located at Ramsteeg 3 near the corner of Spuistraat, right across from Cafe Gollem. The shop is about identical in size with the Bier Koning on Paleisstraat. Only difference though is that The Cracked Kettle has a larger "downstairs area" and Bier Koning has a larger "upstairs area" for shopping.

Cracked Kettle has a fine selection of Dutch, Belgian, German, and American brews plus lots of other offerings. The staff is extremely helpful, patient, and knowledgeable. The shop is pricey, especially by USA standards. Shipping back to the states is also extremely expensive. It can easily cost you up to $140 USD to ship a case of beer home via FedEx...

They are also a good karma shop that supports beer trading. When I recently visited, I purchases a DL 09' and a BA Angels Share that they had received in a trade from an American.

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Photo of stowehop
4.65/5  rDev +1.1%

Haven't been there but ordered online for some rare beers. Surprised at how quickly Jeff responded and got the beer out. They ship express only, a bit pricey, but worth it for the rarity. Beers packed more than well enough.

The package arrived and had been opened by us customs. When I took out the beers, one of them was empty. It had not leaked, and the cap had been perfectly replaced, so it looked like a promo bottle. Not even the slightest kink in the cap WTF.

I Immediately informed Jeff by e-mail, who without hesitation refunded not only the price of the beer, but it's % of the shipping charge(beer is long sold out). Even offered to try to get more and hold it for me.

Not sure if it was another bored,thirsty customs agent, or if they poured one out to make sure it was only beer- the box did originate in Amsterdam! Either way, I'm sure most of it went down the drain-wasn't Bud or Coors.

So sorry BA, but that is one less bottle of Black Damnation that will hit the trade market. Thank Uncle Sam.

Don't hesitate to order from the Kettle. Jeff will go out of his way to make sure you are happy.

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Photo of cajang
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Just got back from a visit to this store. Right of Spui tram stop, second alley on the left. An arms length from Gollem, which I did not visit tonight.

Talked to a wonderful gentleman named Andy who was knowledgeable and enthusiastic about beer. He certainly knew his beers. Had a great conversation about everything from the beer selection (he said it could easily be triple if they had the space or demand), to the history of John Martin Stout (new to me), to home brewing. He gave me some great suggestions on good value beers, and pointed me in the direction of some other good bars and breweries in Amsterdam. This small beer shop has a great selection of Belgium and Dutch beers as well as some American and English beers. I also spied a few Czech selections and a Corona.

They were selling all the Westy's for 10 Euro there, and I saw a couple pallates in the corner. Some RR Suplication and Tempation behind the counter and he even said he had a couple Lost Abbey upstairs. Black Albert for 6 Euro.

This is certainly a must visit if you are in Amsterdam. Easy to get to, friendly and knowledgeable staff, and a world class selection... what more do you want?

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.2/5  rDev -8.7%

I went the order on line route for this place as I saw it mentioned in a post on BA.

Ordering was easy enough and I asked for 3 bottles each of Pannepot Grand Reserva, Guinness Special Export(John Martin), Berliner Kindlweisse, and 2 bottles of Westvleteren 6, which actually turned out to be the Blonde. I emailed them about the wrong labelling of the 6 and they have fixed that.

Anywho, they were very quick with their email responses to any questions I had but apparently, after a few weeks, I found out that they were out of the Berliner and were waiting for more to come in.

It took roughly a month and a half before I got my beers but they were well packaged and all were in great condition. The cost was very high due to the rate of exchange between the Dollar and the Euro but I knew that when I went into this transaction. Rates have since changed and are much better for US consumers.

Other than the out of stock predicament which wasn't shown on their website, I'd say the overall experience was pretty darned good. I can recommend them.

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Photo of Jeffo
4.7/5  rDev +2.2%

I've been going here every couple of months for a little over a year now, so I think I can give a more accurate review of it now.

The shop has grown since my last review. They have two smaller floors on the bottom, but they've expanded upstairs. Essentially, the owner used to live on the two floors above the shop, but he's cleared out one floor and added that to the shop. The bottom two floors have the Belgian beers, English brews, and a some fine wines, while the upstairs now includes German, American, and Scandinavian stuff.

The staff is top notch. The two guys I see there are great guys and the love talking shop. They know their stuff and always have great recommendations. What I really value is their honesty; if they don't think something is all its cracked up to be, they'll be one-hundred procent honest about that. I value honesty.

Selection is good, though a bit thin. All the standard Belgians are there, but the English, German, and US selection is a bit thin. They tend to shy away from the standard stuff that the main importer, Beer&Co., deliver into Europe. They'll take the more interesting things, but the standard stuff is sometimes hard to come across here.

Where they fall short on the regular imports, they excell well beyond what you'd expect on special imports. These guys are real hunters, and they'll try to hunt down hard-to-find stuff for their shop. In that sense, this really is a "speciality shop." I've seen aged bottles of Westvleteren here, rare De Struis beers, and even some special releases from the US, such as Abyss and Dark Lord. It's rare to see them, but every now and then the owner will gets his hands on a bottle of something rare and add it to his shelves. This always makes a trip to the Kettle an exciting one. As such, it's hard to give a grade for selection. If it was a grade for rarity and special beers only, it'd be a perfect score.

Their beers are a little more expensive than average. Compared to their main competitor in the city, they are .50 to 2 Euro more per bottle. Despite this, I always make the Kettle my first stop, mostly for the special stuff and the great service.

This place is definitely a must-stop place when in Amsterdam. I don't get down to Amsterdam very often, but when I do I always get excited to stop at the Kettle.

One last thing. If you're on your way to Amsterdam and know you're going to be stopping in, make it a point to bring something interesting and rare from your area. These guys always like making trades for interesting and rare stuff.

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Photo of baggio
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Visited this place during my trip to Amsterdam a few weeks ago.

This little shop is just across the street from Cafe Gollem which probably is the best pub in Amsterdam :)

Nice cozy wooden interior with huge shelves packed with beer from all over the world but mainly Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. Great selection!

Owner was very friendly, professional and a true beer enthusiast.

This is the best beershop in Amsterdam hands down! Not to be missed! I'll make sure to stop by this shop whenever i happen to in the area.

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Photo of weissbierdrinker
5/5  rDev +8.7%

I stayed in Amsterdam for a little over a year and while there this store was a frequent stop for me. After a while I got to know the staff and they where exceptionally nice and knowlegeable. They where able to recommend me beers in styles that I was looking for and also able to tell me about each one. They are willing to trade beers with you in their search for unusual hard to come by beers. The staff there, which ever employee you get, is great to talk to and very friendly. This is THE beerstore you need to visit while in Amsterdam

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Photo of StonePhil
5/5  rDev +8.7%

It's taken me a while to finally sit down and write this review but during the interim of my visit and this post I haven't forgotten the exceptional service and selection that this place offers.

The shop itself was located in an alley and wasn't impressively large. However, they packed that store to the brim with walls of incredible beers. A good selection of Belgian and Trappist ales made up a good chunk of their selection but I was surprised to see that they also carried a Great Divide and I even saw a few Lost Abbey beers aging in a corner.

The staff were knowledgeable, friendly and down to Earth. They gave me several recommendations and also agreed to trade beers with me.

The prices were fair, even with the exchange rate as it is.

I'd definitely recommend this place to any BA's that happen to travel to Amsterdam.

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Photo of dirtylou
5/5  rDev +8.7%

another absolutely world-class Amsterdam beer store.

This has a slight advantage over De Bierkoning in that it is located directly across the alley (about 3 feet) from a world class beer-bar in Cafe Gollem, so this 2-stop combination is strongly encouraged when in Amsterdam.

I hit Cafe Gollem first with my dad and then stumbled out to notice a beer store in front of me. I recognized the name as the other beerstore i really wanted to visit, and ironically i had no clue that it was going to be right here - what a great surprise.

the store was temporarily closed but i had very little time so i rang the bell and the shopkeep opened up for me (he was on his lunchbreak). I expressed my gratitude and mentioned that i had read about his store in the United States. This guy was fantastic and recommended some nice dutch brews and we had some great beer convos.

The Westy's were out and about at this stop too, and they had vintages of at least the 12 that dated back to 1998. Belgian and dutch beers were present in overwhelming quantities. This and De Bierkoning are not big stores (space-wise) but they are just overflowing with gems.

The US beer selection here was similar to De Bierkoning (great divide, terrapin, etc) but also had some shocking items - Port Hop 15?!?!? How the hell is that even possible? Apparently, they make trips to the States and import the beers themselves. I doubt its legal, but its sure cool. They also had the rarer DFH line available with hefty price tags.

A phenomenal experience.

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Photo of ggaughan
4.2/5  rDev -8.7%

I stopped by here with my wife on a recent trip to Holland. I head read alot of reviews of things place. Mostly good but some no so good. Overall my experience was very good. Cool little store with a great selection of Belgian beers and nice addition of some English and German beers I wanted but didn't have the room to drag home on the train. I ended up just getting a Struise glass that I had been looking for for some time. They had a handful of hard to find STruise beers at decent prices. I also saw a crate or 2 of Westvleteren 12 but I wasn't in the market at the time to buy any. They had a few bottles from DFH and a few other American craft brewers which was cool to see. Although I doubt they were for sale, they also had some bottles in the back from Lost Abbey and Stone.
Worth a trip if you are in Amsterdam and it is one of the best shops in town.

Forgot to mention, right when you walk in the door there is a cool bench made out of Westvletern crates. Really cool.

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Photo of bierme
4.35/5  rDev -5.4%

Good beer? yea you could say that. Not really much bad there, particulary lots of Belgiums and lots of other great stuff too.

As with most people in Amsterdam, person working there was great.

They even had beer from Colorado breweries, Great Divide, Left Hand and a few others. Not very big place though. I bo which i had bught a filtered Duvel, a lovely sour and a St. Bernardus Six which I had never seen before

Well, i guess it is not thier fault the dollar is so weak.

Had a nice time talking to the clerk before Gollem opned.

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Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
4.65/5  rDev +1.1%

Just an awesome place literally right across the alley from Cafe Gollem, one of the best beer bars in Amsterdam. Bottle seclection is quite good, but the real gem that I found was a Struise (brewers of Pannepot) tulip glass. Super rare (evidently only one of six in the Netherlands) and evidently so as I was not able to find it anywhere in Brugge, nor Bruxelles. Unfortunately Gekraakte was out of the Pannepot, but I was overjoyed to get a glass none the less. When I was there one of the owners had just gotten back from California and I spied a crate of Pizza Port bottles. Yes, Pizza Port in Amsterdam. I couldn't believe it. I bought some dutch beers to bring home for a tasting session with a friend of mine, I will update my review once we drink them. Beer prices were good, glass prices seemed average to high. Absolutely go here. Just stop what you are doing, walk away from the computer and go here NOW!

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Photo of JBogan
4.85/5  rDev +5.4%

This is a must stop for anyone interested in beer who happens to find themselves in Amsterdam. It's a tiny little store but full of great beer, from floor to ceiling. Lots of treasures to be found. Rather than trying to remember and list them all here, you can check out their website for a good idea of what you'll find.

The Cracked Kettle was a little hard to find at first (Amsterdam can be a little confusing to get around,especially at night), but it's worth the effort. After fulfilling your beer shopping desires, take a few steps across the walkway and you're in the Cafe Gollem. Highly recommended.

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Photo of mdagnew
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

This is just a review of the online shop as i sadly haven't been in person yet...

I had been thinking about ordering from here for a while so when i noticed they had a great selection of Scandinavian beers in stock i thought i would finally bite the bullet...

As i said they have a great selection of Scandinavian brews (i ordered some Mikkeller Jackie Brown, Olfabrikken Brown, Nogne Saison & Pale Ale, Nils Oscar Barley Wine & Imperial Stout and a couple of Huvila brews) as well as a supreme selection of both Belgian and Dutch stuff. I didn't order any Dutch this time but did order some Pannepot which i had been dying to try for ages...

They also had a decent selection of US and German beers... i ordered Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock, Great Divide Yeti & Hibernation and also some Left Hand Imperial Stout...

Service was very friendly and helpful with plenty of emails to keep me up to date... Shipping was a little pricey but very quick - i received my order about 4 working days after it was shipped...

Overall i was very pleased with this place and wouldn't hesitate to order from it again...

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Photo of CBA
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Great location, set up, selection, and service. The guys running the store are obviously knowledgable and a pleasure to speak with. The pricing however was quite steep, so be prepared to open your wallet wide (Pannepot Reserva 75cl @ $30 Euro's) Still no saisons to speak off - what's up with that. No love for the farmhouse beers apparently. Luckily we went to Houffilze, Roche and Soy - Fantome abound. Would've dearly loved to purchase the 75cl Aardmonnik if only I had room in my luggage.

Good selection of glassware, and if wine and scotch is your thing, they've got some good choices as well.

The hours are good as they are open late, and all the more perfect to spend all those leftover euro's after a slightly drunken visit to Gollem - an easy trip and stumble out the door. Just watch out for Snoppy prowling in the alley.

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Photo of jasonm
4.7/5  rDev +2.2%

Made the trip to the Cracked Kettle for a "little" bit of shopping during a trip to Amsterdam. Located on an alley (pedestrian and bicycle traffic only) between Spuistraat and Singel in the city Centrum.

The shop is small, but you are blown away by the breadth and depth of their selection of Belgian, Dutch, and German beers. There are even a few American offerings (SN, Left Hand, Dogfish Head). You'll find your standard well-known European beers, but also a good selection of lesser known Dutch and Belgian micros. If not visible, ask about any special vintages. They had some 98 Westvleterns, several of the old St. Sixtus bottles, and lord-knows-how-old bottles of Westmalle with rusted caps! They also had plenty of fresh Westvleterns during my visit.

The gentleman minding the shop was helpful in picking out beers, checking prices and making recommendations. Prices were reasonable for the most part, although some of the harder to find beers had the expected price markup.

Definitely stop in, and head over to Cafe Gollem across the way when youre done!

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Photo of sfreshnock
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Stopped by here are first day in Amsterdam. I read the reviews and after some searching we located both Gollem and Cracked Kettle. After a friendly greeting we were amazed at the heavy selection paired with the appropriate glassware. The back wall had a selection of lesser knowns, lambics and fruit beers, Also a selection of US and European beers. The price is reasonable, with the dollar performing so crappy it was not inexpensive for us BUT if your on the Euro 33cl bottles were going from 1.50 - 2.50 compared to 3 to 4 Euro at the competition. Which is great!

The gentleman working went out of his way to locate beers for us and give us the history behind them. He was unable to find a price for "La Divine", so we went across the street to sample. When we returned he had our bottles ready to go. The friendly service above the norm of most bottle shops.

The store itself is rather small by US standards and packed full. Take your time cause you could easily overlook something. Beers rarely had more than one facing and some were not on the shelf. As stated above the staff is a great asset for overcoming the overwhelming selection.

It's tough for me to grasp the pricing. In Chicago we would pay from 4-10 dollars for some of these 33cl bottles. So the bottles are still very reasonable, especially for bottles that are considered rare. The prices were lower than many bottle shops I visited in Brussels but they had heavier tourist traffic.

This is a beer lovers paradise. They stock beers from all regions, with an increasing selection of US micros. The staff is friendly with know how. Good pricing too. If I lived in Amsterdam, this would be my top beer shop!

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Photo of theformula
4.65/5  rDev +1.1%

Awesome little beer store across from Cafe Gollem. I didn't even notice it was there until I noticed the Westvleteren crates outside (obviously empty). A Scottish fellow helped my g/f and I out and was very friendly and made some suggestions, including a very small micro-brewed beer in Amsterdam although the name escapes me now.

Nice varied selection and even some US micros. I picked up some Achel Trappist beer and De Dolle Arabier as well as Westlveteren. They have a good amount of glassware as well.

Really a great tucked away treasure and I'll be visiting again. Soon.

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Photo of IDateTheFormula
4.55/5  rDev -1.1%

My boyfriend and I found this gem after leaving Gollem Cafe (it's literally 5 steps away) and were blown away by the help and the selection. The gentleman that helped us was from Scotland and just had no problem chatting with us about beer while I played with the puppy who was scampering about. He interested to hear about American beers and recommended many beers to us. I purchased a Westvleteren 8, an odd japanese beer and a red flanders that I have since forgot the name of. Great prices, nice guys, and overall just a great place to check out.

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Photo of drseamus
4.85/5  rDev +5.4%

I had already spoken with one of the owners Andy before I left for my trip and we set up a trade ahead of time. I got there and was immediately greeted by Andy and I selected some good beers for the trade. This was the one exception to rude service in Central Amsterdam. It seems that there is a bias against younger Americans in the touristy areas of Amsterdam; not totally without reason I guess.

They have all the standard Belgian beers plus more including Westvleteren beers and a good selection of Dutch beers as well. For the ex-pats in the area, he does have some English and German (including Andechs) beers and is expanding his American selection as well. When I was there he had some Great Divide beers and various other brands as well. I was looking for some rare beers and he didn’t have them so he gave me directions to the other beer store in the city, De Beerkoning. Although De Beerkoning has a slightly bigger selection, I would definitely recommend The Cracked Kettle over De Beerkoning because I found the service to be much better.

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Photo of GregMcQ
4.65/5  rDev +1.1%

Visited The Cracked Kettle on 10-May-07. First impressions are everything... this one makes a very nice "first impression". It's not a big shop, but it's well laid out and has a nice European appeal to it. The Belgium beers are on one side; the other European/UK beers on the other; great range on both, although a few nuggets (for me at least) were noticeably missing. They did have an ample stocking of Westvleteren, though... and you just can't go wrong with an ample stocking of Westvleteren. There was also a smattering of nice American microbrewery beer there... some Anchor, some Sierra Nevada; and I was told that they were going to try and get some goodies from some Colorado brewers like Great Divide and Left Hand.

Met Andy (running shop when I got there) and Jeff (the owner); both were incredibly nice, helpful and informative... Andy pretty much drove me to every beer that I wound up buying. Jeff showed me the little microbrewery that he was building upstairs. Like I said, really nice guys. Another caveat to this place it it's location... right across the alley from Cafe Gollem. And when I say "right across the alley" I mean literally no more than five feet.

At any rate, this is a topnotch place ran by topnotch people; will be back there for sure.

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Photo of Blybloke
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Located right across the street (more like an alley) from Cafe Gollem, The Cracked Kettle is a bit of a hole in the wall. It's on a very quiet street a bit away from the bustle of the red light district (but not too far). I was referred to this shop by the bartender at Cafe Gollem who told me that I could find Westvleteren beers there. And sure enough, she was right. The selection was outstanding. All the trappist beers were represented, along with a beautiful selection of Belgians and others. I saw a few American beers (Anchor Steam, Liberty, Old Foghorn) and some harder-to-find English Ales like Thomas Hardy.

The atmosphere is inviting and the man that helped me was very personable. I asked him about the Westvleteren 12 and he led me right to it (in a wooden case on the floor along with the other Westys). The price per bottle of the 12 was 10.70 euros and I picked up a couple of them. I should have grabbed a couple other bottles, but my money on hand was dwindling after a couple hours at Cafe Gollem.

If you visit Amsterdam and care about your beer, this store is an absolute MUST. When I make it back to Amsterdam, I will make it one of my first stops.

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Photo of cypressbob
4.2/5  rDev -8.7%

On my second trip to Amsterdam I found this newly opened beerstore, right across from cafe gollem.

Quite small inside but a decent selection of high quality brews, not on par with de bierkoning but the service is much better, the scottish guy i dealt with on a number of occasions was very helpful and friendly

I ended up only taking a few bottles as i'd stocked up in de bierkoning for the journey home already, but i got a nice bottle of drie fonteinen oude gueuze and some other interesting stuff

Definatly worth a look, plus u can order stuff and get it shipped which is pretty handy

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Photo of Andreji
4/5  rDev -13%

While cafe gollem was closed we ventured to find de Gekraakte ketel- and guess what- it's right in front. i expected a bit more from this place. as we walked in it has a cava like style with the beer selection in the first section and harder liquors ar the back (well, it's about 20sq meters so it isn't too far back). we were served by a scottish bloke who we asked about the beers they carried. while the selection must excede 120, it wasn't too amazing when compared to the Bierkoning, which is THE PLACE in amsterdam. i liked it, tho. prices were alright and some things they don't carry at the king's they do have here (read: deus, for example). I was quite glad and although my budget right then and there didn't allow me to make purchases, i did take note for next time.

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De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle) in Amsterdam, Netherlands
Place rating: 4.6 out of 5 with 34 ratings