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Cafe Karpershoek: Borrel Hapjes
Given its Centraal (sic) location I had assumed that Cafe Karpershoek, on the corner of Martelaasgracht opposite the station, would be a typical transient touristy type of place. However on my last visit I dropped in for a beer to escape a particularly torrential November rain shower and was pleasantly surprised. As expected there was a significant tourist presence but standing at the bar with my Bock (groot of course!), enjoying my roll-up, I found myself in conversation with a local hotelier and a couple of his mates, talking travel and generally shooting the bull. The shower passed but I was kind of disinclined to leave and a few more beers seemed like a good idea.
This is a proper "brown cafe" with its multi-layered brown paintwork, the floor covered in sand and even a bollard in the middle, and as such has no aspirations to compete in the restaurant market, instead offering a range of excellent bar snacks - bitterballen, fricadelles, cheese, sausage etc. at very reasonable prices - good healthy stuff designed specifically for soaking up the beer!
Favorite Dish: If you are peckish, go for the "Borrel Hapjes" - a mixed plate of warm and cold appetizers including all of the above, more than enough for one person so share with your new friends and anyone else who happens to pop in thinking that the platter on the bar is complimentary house nibbles - for 7 Euros who's counting?
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