Netherlands: Rotterdam Beer Guide (Part 2)

Netherlands: Rotterdam Beer Guide (Part 2)

The best beer bars and breweries just outside Rotterdam city center

As concluded in Part 1, there is plenty of craft beer in the city center of Rotterdam! In Part 2 we will guide you to find those hidden gems in the other neighborhoods just outside the city center.


Rotterdam Noord (North) brewery, beer store and beer bars

The north area of the city is a mix of upcoming trendy little neighborhoods. Relatively untarnished in the WWII bombing, this residential area is experiencing a wave of wonderful new little stores, design shops, delis and restaurants popping up. On the square Noordplein there is a food market every Saturday and the site also hosts little festivals throughout the year. Running from Noordplein eastwards is the shopping street Zwaanshals that is home to several great craft beer spots. The Hop-In beer store sells craft beer specials and limited editions from a selection of Dutch and international breweries. Right next door is Whiskybase, with a vast selection of whiskies from around the world and specializing in independent bottlers.

Brouwerij Noordt

Around the corner you’ll find Brouwerij Noordt, a brewery started in 2015 and located in an old fire station. Their taproom is a wonderful bright open space with a view of the tanks and has twenty Noordt beers on tap. In their mini (bottle)shop you can also get cans to go. 

At the end of Zwaanshals is Proeflokaal Faas, popular with the locals. A real Dutch pub with lots of dark woodwork, a pool table, vintage Delft blue tiles and a good craft beer selection. If you have time for a little walk around the neighborhood be sure to check out the mural of Coen Moulijn (a local football hero) on the corner of Bloklandstraat and Moerkapellestraat or the redeveloped Hofbogen, housing several restaurants like FG Food Labs, Opporto and music venue BIRD. On top of the Hofbogen, where the train tracks used to be, they have laid out a public roofgarden with a great view of the city.

A little more to the west and just a few minutes’ walk north of the Central Station is another popular local bar with a great beer list and twenty taps, Café Walenburg. In an adjacent room behind the bar is the smallest brewery in the Netherlands Hoevebrugsch, making yellow gold on just sixteen square meters!

Café Walenburg in Rotterdam

Rotterdam West city brewery and beer bars

Rotterdam ‘West’ starts on Westersingel (the street that leads up to Central Station) and runs all the way to Delfshaven, the historic area of Rotterdam. This is where the oldest active brewery in Rotterdam is located, Stadsbrouwerij De Pelgrim. Though the brewery was only started in 1996, the building itself dates back to 700 years ago and is located next to the Pilgrims Fathers Church from which pilgrims traveled in 1620 to America. The brewery has two flagship beers, Stoombier and Mayflower, but brews a variety of light and dark beers throughout the year. Can’t choose? Order a flight and try them all! 

Running west to east from Delfshaven to the city center is one of Rotterdam’s most popular streets, Nieuwe Binnenweg, with an array of interesting stores, delis and bars. Belgian beer bar Boudewijn is a busy hangout during the week and on weekends. They have 18 beers on draft and serve good pub food. Just be aware there are very few vegetarian choices. Nearby is another good beer bar called Kraftbar, a certified BrewDog bar with 22 beers on tap and a good selection of local beers. Don’t expect extraordinary craft brews, but once in a while they will have a very interesting beer on tap. It is also a great spot to kick back and relax and watch the bustling shoppers and locals go by.

Kraftbar in Rotterdam

Rotterdam Oost (East) beer store and beer bars

Bordering on the east side of the city center is Hoogstraat, a burgeoning street of shops and cafés with two wonderful beer venues. Café Verward is a unique concept serving both quality wine and craft beer. Its intentional minimalist interior design, classy without being pretentious, enhances the tasting experience, as it doesn’t distract your attention from the drink in front of you. They serve excellent bar food and a daily special.

Café Verward in Rotterdam

Across the street is Karreman Biermeesters, with a large selection of local Dutch and international beers, both traditional styles and craft brews. The staff is very friendly and knowledgeable, so don’t hesitate to ask for advice about the beers they stock.

At the end of the street, across the Oostplein square, is Locus Publicus, an old-fashioned bar with wood paneling, a fireplace, 200+ beers on their bottle list and 15 beers on tap. It is a Belgian beer style bar focusing on the more traditional Belgian and German styles, but they regularly have a local beer on tap. Next door is Locus Publicus International, their sister bar that opened in 2014, with a modern and trendy interior and 12 beers on tap. You can choose which one to sit down in depending on your mood! Because the bar is close to the university there a lot of students in this area, so don’t be surprised to see it full every night of the week.

Rotterdam Zuid (South) beer bar Kaapse Kaap

Connecting the north side of Rotterdam to the south side is the second largest bridge in The Netherlands, Erasmus Bridge, nicknamed the Swan. Step off the bridge and step into the trendy neighborhood Kop van Zuid, a redeveloped area featuring old port buildings that have been turned into lofts, restaurants and apartment buildings. One of the most famous venues here is Hotel New York, a restaurant in a building that was formerly the head office of the Holland Amerika Line from where thousands of emigrants sailed to New York.

Kaapse Brouwers in Rotterdam

Across from Hotel New York you’ll find the biggest and probably the best craft beer bar in Rotterdam, Kaapse Kaap. Located in the Fenix Food Factory, this brewpub has over twenty wonderful beers on tap and a great selection of beers in their little bottle shop. On Wednesday nights you can play boardgames here. A selection of canned beers in an ice bucket makes that you can enjoy your beers without interrupting gameplay! They also host fun tap takeovers.

Kaapse Brouwers in Rotterdam

So, anyone thirsty for a beer? In Rotterdam there is always a beery place nearby!

Author: Tina Rogers

Updated: 14-06-2024