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Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
phone: +31 (0)203 30 28 90
// CLOSED //
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vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $
sweet beer-bar, that i read about on Beerfly prior to spending 3 long nights in Amsterdam in the midst of a 15 day European stretch.
It should be noted that some negative reviews below refer to Gollem being too smokey - there is no longer ANY smoking indoors in Amsterdam so disregard those comments.
I had the St. Feuillien Triple.
The atmosphere was very much of a traditional dutch brown cafe. The interior was very small and dark/woody. There was no outdoor seating but a fantastic destination beerstore is directly across the alley (De Gekraakte Ketel (The Cracked Kettle)).
The selection seemed to be primarily Belgian, with some Dutch highlights and probably featured 10ish taps and 200ish bottles. Westy 8 and 12 were available at fair prices. Even if you narrowed your style down, say to Triple, you would still have 15-20 choices to somehow choose from. All the glassware was stunning and fit to the beer.
Fantastic selection - could spend days in a place like this - not a bad beer available and all at fair prices (1/2 to 1/3 the price as you would find in say Paris).
Not sure if there was food, but we didn't have any.
The service was fine and english was spoken by the bartender but not by any of the other patrons
07-20-2008 18:17:36 |
More by dirtylou
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
My wife and I spent a lovely few days in Amsterdam last April (has it been that long??) as part of a longer vacation, and we had a very nice time enjoying this little spot 2 blocks from our hotel. Be careful of the bikes in the alley out the front door, though- they whiz through and after a couple of Belgium's finest, it's a bit challenging!
A very homey place, nice cozy atmosphere, the bartenders seemed to know a lot of locals but were very nice to a couple of American tourists. Very knowledgeable, and the beer list written in chalk across 2 walls was very impressive from the balcony/upper floor where we sat. Great selection- we really enjoyed our time here.
Overall, I only had three negative comments on this place- 1) it was smokier than many places we visited, and 2) it was mostly about Belgian beer, and since I had fallen for for Dutch beers in the previous few days, I missed those, and 3) we only had a chance to go here once.
01-10-2008 03:18:50 |
More by Dukeofearl
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
This was the second beer bar we visited on a recent trip to Amsterdam. The bar is a bit removed from the main tourist avenue through Amsterdam which is nice and it is right across the alley from the Cracked Kettle which is good.
The bar is small with 6 or so eats at the bar when you walk in and then about 5 tables in an elevated seating area in the back. Tons of old bottles and breweriana around the walls and the beer lists are on chalkboards around the front of the bar which was cool. They had a nice selection of trappist and also lambic beers. Main focus on Belgian beers but also had some Dutch and German beers.
We only stayed to have one beer as it was a bit smokey and was getting to us but Gollem is worth giving it a visit as their beer selection is excellent.
05-11-2008 16:47:16 |
More by ggaughan
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
I'm an avid Amsterdam vacationer (10 trips in the past 10 years) and Gollem is my favorite bar in the whole city!
The selection is quite good boasting fine examples from around the world. They even offered Westvletern 12 for 14e per bottle this year when I was last there.
I love the table at the top of the stairs that has the small wooden spot where the bartender can place drinks he is passing you from the bar below!
The atmosphere is quintessentially Dutch Gezellig! I love the list of beers written on the walls around the entire place. Top notch!
09-01-2008 19:24:18 |
More by koopa
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
off the tracks from the main tourism areas in Amsterdam (just two minutes away from the Dam) is this jewel of a beer bar. The way there youhave to investigate a bit, because ramsteeg is just one of those narrow sidestreets the city offers. I found it by accident coming from the herengracht, parked my bike and got in.
The place looks old and tiny at first. you only see the bar- with the regulars- and a "second floor" so to speak, that's really just behind and above the bar so you overlook the rest of the clientele. seating also downstairs- didn't see it though- because I focused on the particular way this dim-lit place was setup: you can scan through the menu of beers at eye-level from this upper seating because it is composed of blackboards on the wall up above, accompanied of course by the beery deco that makes you feel like home.
The service comprised one single man who was attentive at my entrance. he was rather distracted on his dutch chit-chat with the bar folks and thought I was expecting someone thus he was late to come and serve me- excusable nonetheless.
I went for the wiktap pater tripel- I had only one half hour and this one caught my eye on the chalk-dirty blackboards staring at me with impressive sets of abdijbieren, trappisten, dutch and belgian brews that exceeded one hundred- taps aren't all that prized in Europe so this was mostly bottled. I was handed it right over the handrail from the bar that seems to be a sassy mechanism to serve the clientele in the most european fashion of half-assed customer care- that I actually love very much.
I payed up and left wishing I had more time to spend with some of their exclusive offers at rather good prices, and, of course, the dutch bar atmosphere that I'm a sucker for every time. this place is a must.
07-04-2005 13:40:54 |
More by Andreji
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $$
Small, friendly and inviting pub. The kind of place you might envision if you were writing a story about the perfect old European pub.
Located on an alley just off a quiet street several blocks from the busy downtown area of Amsterdam. Gollem occupies the main floor of a very old building. Lots of dark wood, narrow stairway, a black cat sleeping on a bar stool, brewery advertising and sitting on the end of the bar is a vending machine for canned olives!
First class selection of Belgian beers all served in proper glassware. I had two draft ales: a Tripel Karmeliet and a La Chouffe dubbel. Both were fresh, properly cooled and poured with a perfect head in the correct glass.
The barman was very friendly and knew about every beer on tap as well as the many (dozens) bottled beers available. He offered free samples if requested. Because the bar (in fact all Amsterdam bars) prohibits smoking, he needed to slip out to the alley for a smoke about twice an hour.
The patrons were friendly as well. On my left was a Dutch working man [who spoke perfect English] and on my right were a couple of American students on a semester abroad college program. In the loft were two more students and a Dutch couple. By the way, this pub is pretty small. About eight seats at the bar and maybe room for eight more at tables in the loft.
I didn't order any food. Other than the canned olives, I'm not sure if any food is even available.
Prices were about average for an Amsterdam pub. Tripel Karmeliet in a "medium" glass (about 25 cl) was 3 Euros. Most expensive beer was the Westvleteren 12 bottle at 10 Euros.
This is a must-visit for any beer lover in Amsterdam. I can hardly wait to go back.
Update: October 25, 2010: Cafe Gollem is closed. Don't know if this is temporary or permanent. All I could learn was that some sort of dispute with the licensing authorities had taken place. The doors have been locked for about one month.
03-18-2009 01:17:34 |
More by joedon
British Indian Ocean Territory
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
Another great bruine kroeg in the same vain as De Garre. Be foreward this was the most "bruine" of them all. Get there early though and share a few glasses with locals on their way home after work, minus the copious amount of smoke with the after dinner crowd. Excellent service, pricing very reasonable and a wide selection in bottle with more limited tap selection. Although I could drink the draft LaChouffe all night. I spied a few bottles of Pannepot in the cellar from my seat at the bar. Although not on the list the barman was more than willing to get it for me.
The best part of the place was the bar cat - Snoppy who took a shine to my coat and everytime I came in for a drink he'd be my companion as long as he got to sleep on my coat.
Word to the wise - take the steps slowly to the washroom, least you end up flat on your back as (edit) I did.
If I moved to Amsterdam, I'd ensure this place was on my route home from work.
01-13-2008 17:05:39 |
More by CBA
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Visited the Café Gollem on a couple of occasions over the weekend 14th to 16th October 2005. Quite close to Dam Square, but you have to know where to find it. Well worth the endeavour. A nice exterior, with a square bar counter enclosing the serving area and access to their downstairs beer storage area and kitchen. Only bar stools for about ten persons, and then a short stairs leading to 3 or 4 tables on a "landing" (couldn't be called a floor), overlooking the bar. There is a scary stairs leading to a subterranean gents, mind your head! Ladies is located in a corner of the upstairs bit.
A really excellent selection of beers, mostly Belgian on blackboards on the walls. Some of the drafts were Brand Pilsener, La Chouffe, Tripel Karmaliet, Charles Quint, Duchesse de Borgogne, and Barbar Bokbier. Many, many bottles including 2 Westvleterens, but both sold out (not surprising). Service was quick, knowledgeable and friendly.
We also had an excellent Cheese plate (mostly Trappist), excellent value at 8.50 for a large size (4 persons). An excellent venue when in Amsterdam.
10-18-2005 15:57:37 |
More by JohnfromDublin
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
We were lost. Youd think that would be hard given that the canals and streets were laid out in a grid, and yet we found ourselves in a labyrinth of water-lined alleys, red tinted cobblestone, and pied piper coffee shops. It also didnt help that wed been up for something close to 34 hours by that point, and had just consumed liters of excellent Dutch beer. I half expected to find the Minotaur lurking around the next corner, but to my surprise, I spied the sign for Gollem and breathed a silent sigh of relief. Jim had been threatening to get in on some of the local action, unless we found the bar soon. That would mean Kumar and I would likely have to spend the next day searching for his poxied form in one of three places: a gutter, the local jail, or raising cane in a quiet café. None of those prospects were particularly appealing.
As we entered the bar, I noticed a bottle shop across the street, the Cracked Kettle, and made a mental note that wed have to stop in there at some point to check out their wares. The bar was fairly crowded, and given the relatively small footprint, we were lucky to find seats at the bar proper that sat along the window to the street. In all, the L-shaped bar could seat about 10, while a small, open upstairs area looked like it could hold about 20 or so at some loose tables. All the draughts were listed on a chalkboard opposite the bar, and it looked like they had close to 25 on, including Charles Quint, Babar, Jopen Koyt, some of the Westmalles and Rocheforts, and the local Mary. They also had quite a bottle list, though I noted some of them werent available. The bartender, a guy in his early 30s, cigarette hanging from the corner of his mouth, raised his eyebrows at us and we ordered our first round.
Im off to the head, Jim said and disappeared down some stairs to the left of those that went to the upper level. Kumar, his eyes at half-mast, took in the crowd we had joined, and raised his goblet to some unknown entity up above the bar. Two guys next to us, Americans, obviously old friends catching up with each other, were trying to decide if they should get another round.
Fuck, we heard Jim yell. He emerged from the bowels of the bar, rubbing his head and plunked down between our fellow expats and us. Watch that fucking stairway when you go piss. Hit my fucking head on the way up, he said panting. He scanned the menu perfunctorily and yelled at the barman who was no more than five feet away that he wanted a Charles Quint, and that it had better not be a sissy pour. The two guys next to him had stopped talking and were staring in disbelief. Jim noted the absence of conversation, sized them up, and yelled once more, And get these two queers something too, but not too expensive. The barman accepted Jims demands with aplomb and served up the drinks, Jims in a Charles Quint three-handled ceramic mug.
Now that is fucking cool, Jim said, If only I had a third hand, right, he asked his two new best friends. One of them, a gaunt, pale gentleman, proceeded to tell him the story of the mug, and amazingly, Jim seemed to be listening. I could see though that he had started to shuffle the deck of cards he always carried with him under the bar with his free hand, a feat I had never been able to accomplish.
Kumar sat transfixed by a black and white cat that had come up from a small stairway behind the bar and was sitting on the stool the barman used. The cat sat there perched, watching the barman eating a steaming plate of linguine that had also appeared from the basement. In between mouthfuls of pasta, the barman explained that the cat ruled the roost here, that he was just an employee. Taking that as its cue, the cat jumped from the stool to land on the bar in front of Kumar, who carefully stroked its fur, its back arching up and stretching.
This would never be allowed back at home, Kumar uttered, his goblet raised up high above his head so as not to get any cat stuff in it. The health inspectors would have a field day with it. Kumar glanced up above his head, noticed his drink, and took a quick sip before raising it up again out of the way of the cat.
Jesus, get that beast off the bar, Jim thundered, noticing the cat for the first time. Damn, Kumar, his ass is all over your hand, he said, laughing. Kumar stared at his free hand for a moment before he bolted up from his stool and rushed down to the bathroom. Everyone at the bar found a great deal of humor in the whole scene, and somebody ordered us all a round. I gratefully accepted mine, while Jim, without looking, swooped up the fresh pour and took a long haul off of it, not missing a beat. By this time, it was past midnight and the light in the bar seemed to be growing increasingly more dim, shadows creeping out from spaces formerly occupied by people and living things. All in all, it had been a great start to our vacation. We had an early train to catch the next day to Brussels. It would be a miracle if we made it.
01-06-2007 01:56:56 |
More by Truh
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
After a doing a bit of shopping of The Cracked Kettle, why not head over to Cafe Gollem...
I pretty much fell in love with the place when I walked in. Cozy (yeah, that means small) split level setting. Small bar area on the ground floor with a flight of steps leading up to some more tables on the upper level. Dark, candlelight, lots of breweriana. Customers are a perpetual mix of Dutch locals and tourists. Within short time I was conversing with locals and Anglo speaking tourists (from the UK and New Zealand) alike.
The beer selection is excellent. Over 200 bottles of Belgian, Dutch, and German beers. All Trappists represented (including Westlvetern) along with the gamut of Abbey, Lambic, Flanders, and other styles. Several tap offerings as well, including what I gather to be a few seasonal offerings. The bok beers were on, including ones from Anker and Chouffe.
Prices were reasonable, running from 3,00 to 4,50 euros for most bottled offerings (12,00 euros for the Westvletern 12). Service was manned by a single bartender who did a wonderful job keeping up with the busy crowd, making recommendations and serving everything in proper glassware.
And to reiterate, watch your head when going down to the bathrooms. Also, the steps themselves are at a pretty steep pitch, so it can get precarious after a few drinks.
10-23-2007 01:09:35 |
More by jasonm
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Cafe Gollem in Amsterdam, Netherlands