Top 5 bars for enjoying beers in Utrecht
Utrecht is striking in terms of the architecture, the vibrant streets and the unique appearance of its waterways. Known for being a student city, and sometimes referred to as a smaller version of Amsterdam, it’s a fascinating, lively city in its own right, and a great place to enjoy a night out.
Top five bars to enjoy a beer in Utrecht
The compact size of Utrecht means that you can visit a few of the city’s famous beer cafes and bars, all in one night. Having lived in Utrecht for nine years, this IamExpat editor offers her top five tried-and-tested places for enjoying beers in Utrecht:
This place is at the helm of Belgian beer speciality in Utrecht. Walk through the front door and you’ll see a jaw-dropping board, listing over 500 types of Belgian beer. Most are bottled, but there’s also an endless choice of local and Belgian beers on tap. You don’t have to be living in Utrecht for very long to hear people recommending Kafé België.
The décor is eccentric, with a gigantic Holy Mary statue alongside a fierce-looking shark and bizarre artwork on all walls and ceilings. There are the pub regulars, students and arty types, but the café welcomes people from all walks of life!
Olivier Belgian Beer Cafe
Housed in a former church, this cafe seems understated from the street. However, once you step inside Olivier Belgian Beer Cafe, you will be impressed by this imposing and memorable place. You’ll probably be gazing from floor to ceiling, impressed at the old-school evidence of the building’s former uses, such as a defunct pipe organ and choir gallery. Choosing a beer is not an easy task with the expansive list of heavenly beers.
Perched on the edge of the moat-like Singel, overlooking the water at an always-bustling intersection, Ledig Erf is in a prime location for chilling out with a beer in Utrecht. Its extensive terrace basks in the sunshine for a large portion of the day in the summer and Dutch, Belgian and German beers go down well on this lively corner of Utrecht.
On tap, they have Weihenstephaner, Wiekse Witte, La Trappe Dubbel and De Koninck and over 60 types of bottled beer. If you opt to sit indoors, you’ll also be impressed by its cosiness and you’ll soon make this one of your go-to pubs!
Het Gegeven Paard
Try some local Utrecht-brewed beers, like Pandora, at Het Gegeven Paard. Located on the ground floor of the Tivoli Vredenburg concert venue, Het Gegeven Paard is more than just a place to grab drinks before going to see a show. It has become one of the focal points of the night-life of Utrecht. At night, the place is buzzing, but it’s also a great place to go for an afternoon beer on a sunny terrace.
If you’re not an Utrecht-dweller, it’s the perfect location – it couldn’t be easier to catch your train home, being only a two-minute walk from Utrecht Central Station.
De Kromme Haring
Get on your bike and prepare your taste buds for one of Utrecht’s craft beer hotspots! The Kromme Haring Brewery and Brew Pub is a stone’s throw from Transwijk park, meaning that it’s located well outside the cosy centre of Utrecht. There you can enjoy an extraordinary night out, or have a memorable brewery tour or beer-tasting session with a group of friends.
A beer tasting session costs 12 euros per person. De Kromme Haring is also a happening place for events, such as live bands and DJ sets.
Quality beers in Utrecht
Utrecht is an ideal city to live in for expats and international students, as well as a nice place for a day trip or a night out for people living in other Dutch cities. There's such an abundance of places to enjoy a few beers, and this selection is sure to point you in the direction of quality beers and a pleasant atmosphere.