Wynand Fockink, the oldest distillery + tasting room (since 1679) in Amsterdam

Wynand Fockink, the oldest distillery + tasting room (since 1679) in Amsterdam

Mar 4, 2011 |  by  |  Art, Spots
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It seems like time stood still in this little distillery/liquor store/tasting room. As soon as I step in, a nice malty smell overwhelms me. Spices and herbs like anis, juniper, fennel, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, carwij and much more are convincing me straight away; concepts like ‘traditional’ ‘authentic’ and ‘handcraft’ are invented here. The view of old barrels, pot stills and jars takes me hundreds of years back in time. Apparently, nothing has changed here except the quality of the products.

Owner of the place Paul Wanrooij admits that Genever has been struggling with a bad image. Either it was cheap stuff for students, or meant for old men drinking through their last days. However, with a growth in sales of 10% each year this is all about the change. The dusty Genever image has been polished and the star of ‘Dutch courage’ is rising again.

I’ll stick with Genever because Champagne is like Ginger Ale.

– MASH Hawkeye

Despite a long history of take-overs in their 300 years of existence, Wynand Fockink is one of the last independent distilleries downtown crafting everything by itself. It means that everything from fermentation, destillation and aging to blending and bottling is done by hand. They even produce their own malt wine, something which is rarely done at distilleries these days. With just the eight of them they manage to produce over 60 different products.

Interested in buying a bottle of WF Genever? Walk into the tasting room: a small old-fashioned café where you can try before you buy. It holds among the widest selections of liqueurs and jenevers I’ve ever seen.

So whether you’re familiar with Genever or you’ve never tried before, Wynand Fockink is definitely worth a visit. Paul loves to show you around in the distillery and tell you all about his beloved work. Think it’s an easy job? Find out yourself by crafting your own bottle of liqueur!

Wynand Fockink Distillery & Tasting Room

Location: Pijlsteeg 31 & 43
Info: http://www.wynand-fockink.nl

Photos by Rutger Houweling.

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