(J)enever #atozchallenge

This post is part of the A to Z Challenge. Each post this month will be associated with a letter of the alphabet with the theme ‘Food Memories‘.


The first time I heard of jenever (or genever) was when I caught an episode of the travelogue, The Getaway, which featured Seth Meyers and his brother, Josh, in Amsterdam. My family was planning a trip to Amsterdam in the coming months ahead, so I thought it was opportune that I stumbled on this episode. One segment showed the brothers in a bar trying jenever, which I learnt then, is the national and traditional liquor of the country.

At the time, I was making lists of places to visit and local food/ drinks to try, so after watching that episode, jenever went straight onto the list which already had pickled herring (which I absolutely loved) and bitterballen (which was errr…not too bad though I don’t think I’ll try it again, but was glad I did at least once).

Our jenever was served in these tulip glasses but unfortunately not from the exotic looking bottle

We were at Zaanse Schans, specifically at the Pancake Restaurant de Kraai, when I had the chance to try jenever. It was a little before lunch, we had appetisers (not pancakes) and I shared a glass of jenever with my sister. Thank goodness it was just half a glass because boy, that drink was potent! For my inexperienced tastebuds, it tasted similar to gin and it burnt slightly down my throat. I chased it with a little bit of dark beer and felt slightly better, though I did feel woozy later and was happy to sit and enjoy the view until the wooziness wore off.

Once it did, we continued our meanderings of Zaanse Schans, going from windmill to windmill. Then later, on the way back into Amsterdam city, we got on the wrong train, which was headed to Rotterdam, instead. I blamed the jenever.

Anyone else here tried jenever before? Or maybe tried a local liquor of a country or place you visited?