Dutch English
3 - 5 april 2025 / NDSM
25 maart 2014
Espressofabriek – Amsterdam (NL)
London’s East meets Amsterdam’s West
Source: http://thecoffeevine.com/2013/03/11/espressofabriek

When people ask me why I have stayed in Amsterdam for more than 6 years now I almost always reply: “I have met some of the most amazing and wonderful people in the world, I can cycle everywhere and I’m having way too much fun. Why in god’s name would I want to leave?” Amsterdam might be a massive tourist drag and have a cultural calendar full of events but as a Western European capital city, it is indeed a rather small affair.

With only 750.000 inhabitants it only comes in 25th place of European cities and on some days it really does feel more like a village than the capital of a modern kingdom. Although its quaint beauty is unrivaled, it lacks the grand boulevards of Paris, the aggressive clash between East and West in Berlin and the rush of London. Yet, there are certain corners of the city where you can momentarily feel like you’ve stepped out of Holland and into a different country.

One of my most favourite places for these short escapes is the area around Westergasfabriek. The area, which used to house one of 4 gas extraction facilities across Amsterdam and strongly reminds me of the area around Brick Lane in London, was turned into a culture park in 2003 and is now home to a lot of young companies, several markets, festivals and one of Amsterdam’s very first specialty coffee businesses, Espressofabriek.

Founded by Rick Woertman in 2005, Espressofabriek has made it its mission to let Amsterdammers and visitors alike discover really great coffee in parts of the city where you wouldn’t necessarily expect to find a specialty coffee shop (there’s a second shop on Ijburg).

Rick and his team wanted to create a place where people would come to enjoy really good coffee and to help provoke a change in Dutch attitudes towards drinking coffee. “We have this very strong tradition in Holland of drinking strong filter coffee at home with the family. The idea of going to a dedicated specialty coffee shop wasn’t really on people’s radar, but that’s definitely changing now,” Rick said.

The space itself is really airy with big windows and very high ceilings and it’s a pretty good example of putting a historic industrial building to good contemporary use. The big hall next door is often used for events such as Neighbourfood market, Sunday market and other cultural events. Across the road is the Ketelhuis, a cultural cinema.

Having taken the roasting process into his own hands has allowed him to create a more specific Espressofabriek taste profile and he is looking at potentially engaging in direct trade with coffee farmers in the near future. Personally, I love it when specialty coffee shops also take care of the roasting process in-house because it lets you experience one of the most crucial steps in coffee making, first hand. It also really puts the specially coffee shops skills to the test, because if they screw it up you probably won’t be coming back.

Although their new home only feels slightly bigger than their previous location it has a much larger coffee bar and area for displaying all the coffees that are also for sale. Although Westerpark might be a bit off the beaten track, it is defintely one of the nicest places to hang out in the summer and we’re definitely ready for that!

Spring, we’re ready!

Basic info:

Opening times: Mo-Fr: 8-18, Sa-Su: 10-18
Address: Pazzanistraat 39, 1014 DB Amsterdam
Connect: Facebook, Website
Price check: Espresso €2 / Flat White €3,70
Espresso machine used: Synesso
Range of coffees on offer: various single Espresso and filter roasts
Free Wifi: Yes
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