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“A great location without decent service”
Review of Cafe de Jaren

Cafe de Jaren
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Ranked #784 of 4 440 Restaurants in Amsterdam
Price range: US$8 - US$25
Cuisines: International
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Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, After-hours, Breakfast, Reservations
Neighbourhood: Red Light District (De Wallen)
Description: Cafe de Jaren opened its doors in june 1990 as one of the largest cafes in Amsterdam, sporting an entire new and unique formula. The concept is mirrored in its spacious and light-rich architecture and interior decoration, as well as in its pleasant, non-pushing atmosphere. The large building features a spacious cafe on the ground floor with an international reading-table, a pleasant restaurant with large-choice salad bar on the first floor, as well as a superb canal-view terrace.Situated right in the centre of Amsterdam, Cafe de Jaren can be easily reached by public transport.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I had lunch here, hoping to get a bit of work done as well. De Jaren has a great terrace next to the water and as it was a sunny day, that's what I went for. Walking through the cafe I noticed that almost every table had a small sign designating it a 'laptop-free zone'. The only ones without these signs were a few small ones near the entrance, all with fixed benches. Oh well, that was for later, let's have lunch first.

I had a great table on the terrace, looking out across the canal, but there were two things that dampened the mood: the service and my sandwich. There are loads of servers wandering around but you have to catch the right one, as half of them can't take your order as they only bring out food and drinks and apparently also forget to point you out to a colleague. When one server took my order, she never looked at me, didn't utter a word beyond repeating my order, and getting it wrong, just stood there tapping on her iPhone-like gadget. My sandwich arrived within minutes, dropped off by server no.2, but there was no sign of my drink yet. When I asked, she would look into it. Two minutes later no.3 turned up with a tray full of drinks, dropped mine on the table and took off again. Not a word was uttered. Having finished lunch, and my drink, someone swiped my empty glass at a pace that prevented me from getting a new order in. Then no.5 turned up, enquiring if I was being served yet. Seeing as I had been there for 30 minutes by then, the question should have been 'can I get you anything else perhaps', but at least I got some attention.

Oh yeah, the sandwich. Let's just say that when you offer a ciabatta carpaccio, I guess it's a good idea to add a splash of decent olive oil on top of the beef itself, parmesan cheese, some rocket and pine nuts, but could I get that on the sandwich please? Not floating across the plate so that the ciabatta is swimming in it? Taste wise the sandwich was allright, but then I have had a similar sandwich in other places, it's wasn't anything special if you ask me.

As I wanted to get some work done as well, I moved inside to one of the tables where laptops are allowed, to the detriment of my back. I got my work done and had lunch, but I didn't feel like staying there any longer as my back was protesting from the bench I was sitting on. I could have moved again, but one of the reasons I often work at places like this is that I can take my time, enjoy the surroundings while working as well. At De Jaren I had to choose between working, and suffering the less than ideal seating, or sitting in the sun and suffering the staff. I chose to move somewhere else.

If you can live with the service level and the not-that-special options on the menu, most of which can be had elsewhere cheaper, De Jaren is a great place, at a great location with a very nice terrace.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Jelle H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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8 - 12 of 1 246 reviews

Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Excellent canal side location, perfect. Good food (I think great!) and okay cocktails. Sat under the umbrella on the canal. Great time! TRY THIS!

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank glenuehlein
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DeJaren, Public Relations Manager at Cafe de Jaren, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Dear glenuehlein,

Thank you so much for your kind words!

We are glad to hear that you enjoyed our food and our cocktails.

We hope to see you again in the future!

Kind regards,

Café de Jaren

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

We visit Cafe de Jaren for its central location, reasonable prices and seating outside, with canal views. It is a classic in Amsterdam and still good.

Thank FerrisXL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DeJaren, Public Relations Manager at Cafe de Jaren, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Dear FerrisXL,

Thank you for sharing your feedback with us on TripAdvisor!

We hope that you enjoyed your stay at Café de Jaren.

Kind regards,

Café de Jaren

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

The breakfast 'de jaren' is amazing and for good value. The decoration inside is very nice and the view outside with the canal boats is very relaxing. Highly recommended for a stop during your visit to the city centre.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank fieke782018
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DeJaren, Public Relations Manager at Cafe de Jaren, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Dear fieke782018,

Thank you for sharing your experience with us at TripAdvisor.

We like the fact that you enjoyed our location and decoration!

We hope to see you again soon.

Kind regards,

Café de Jaren

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

The location of this restaurant is perfect, right on the canal, surrounded by green trees, it's lovely. But that's the only positive thing about it. The service was SO slow, lazy and unfriendly. We had to wait 20 minutes for a napkin! I heard the salad buffet was good and ordered it, the waiter took my order but didn't bother to mention the most important thing: you can only go to the buffet ONCE! I didn't know that, took a few tomatoes as a starter, but then when I went up to the buffet again I was rudely told that there is no refill. So I ended up paying 10 euros for 3 plain tomatoes! What a rip off!!! There was no use fighting with them, so I left hungry and pissed. So, if you decide to take the salad bar - be aware and stock up!!!

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Sasha L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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