I was over in the Baarsjes on Saturday, for reasons I won't go into here. I used to live around that way and it's amazing to see how it's changed in the last five years.
The Jan Evertsenstraat used to be rough and ready. Packed with Turkish gree grocers, phone centres, kebab shops. All the usual stuff for a high street in an immigrant-rich area. But there's been a transformation.
First come the fancy coffee places. Then the trendy eateries. Before you know it, gentrificatoion is complete.
One the way to my appointment, I noticed a colourful Oedipus sign. That might be worth checking out I thought. Which is what I duly did later. Radijs, the place is called. Which means radish in English.
What is it? "Modern neighbourhood café" their website calls it. A posh lunchroom is how I'd describe it. With beer.
Obviously, I'm completely out of place. What with my clean-shaved cheeks and untrendy shirt. It's mostly younger types tuccking into posh sarnies. Despite there being half a dozen draughts, I don't see any takers for beer. Other than me, of course. I go for an old-school favourite: La Chouffe.
I'm slightly puzzled by the chairs. They look like the ones schools had in my youth. They always struck as being designed with comfort in mind. In particular, in providing as little of it as possible. Why are they popular in trendy places?
I just have the one.
Jan Evertsenstraat 41HS,
1057 BM Amsterdam.
Tel: 020 751 3232
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