Whether you are a Dutch beer enthusiast or a beer lover visiting The Netherlands, Tim Skelton’s beer guide to Dutch breweries and bars is all you need to find your way in the Dutch beer landscape. Following on the current beer revolution in The Netherlands, the second edition of this comprehensive beer guide is even bigger and better, featuring an impressive 700 breweries and 550 beer cafés, including tips on what are the best beers to drink during your visit. It’s hard to fathom the hours and dedication it must have taken Tim and his wife Amanda to visit all these places and put together this thorough overview. That shows what passion has gone into creating this book! I cannot think of a better or more credible source for anything and everything you ever wanted to know about Beer in The Netherlands.
Beer in The Netherlands, 2nd edition
Like any good and informative guide, this book starts with the basics: a short history of the country and the Dutch beer culture, tips on how to get around, choosing accomodation and very importantly, advice on how to navigate the Dutch food scene. Tim’s knowledge on these topics is – especially being a non-native – quite impressive and he mentions several things that I didn’t know about. Such as my local pub down the street Locus Publicus was one of the founding members of the association Alliantie van Biertapperijen (ABT)! The book also caters to all levels of beer drinkers and includes information on how beer is made and the different beer styles.
The first of the two biggest chapters of the book spans 129 pages and covers all active breweries and brewpubs, including a short description of the brewery and an honest rating of their beers.
The second part of the book gives an extensive overview of beer bars in all twelve Dutch provinces, attentively choosing those bars that offer a selection of more than just your average pilsner, such as local and/or international craft brews. The number of bars that amounts to is impressive; 130 pages worth of thoughtful reviews and concise, but informative descriptions. I’m happy to see that Rotterdam gets such extensive coverage! (The only downside to published content in this ever-changing beer landscape is that information can quickly become outdated. Unfortunately Kraft Bar Rotterdam just closed its doors after the 2nd edition came out.)
If after all this you still haven’t had your fill and are of an adventurous spirit, there are several more pages on beer tours, museums and Dutch beer festivals.
I view myself as an active beer explorer, however while reading this guide I have come to realize that I have only hit the tip of the Dutch beer iceberg. So on goes the beer adventure! And of course I will be taking this guide with me.
Beer in The Netherlands (2nd edition, published January 2020) is available for €22,50 on Tim Skelton’s website and at other retailers. More information can be found on skeltonink.eu.
Tim is a British-born renowned beer writer and the author of three books: Beer in The Netherlands, Around Amsterdam in 80 beers, and Luxembourg Bradt Travel Guide. Tim and his wife Amanda have been living in The Netherlands for over 30 years and are proud to be Dutch. They currently reside in Eindhoven.