Hummingbird was a new name to me in Amsterdam’s growing speciality coffee scene, having opened since my previous visit in 2018. However, it came highly recommended, being on almost everyone’s must-visit list when I started asking around. Located on the pedestrianised Spuistraat, close to Amsterdam’s historic centre, I made two brief visits, both in keeping with Hummingbird’s nature as an espresso bar rather than a fully-fledged sit-down coffee shop.
That said, you are welcome to stay (if you can find a seat, that is). In all, a dozen plastic stools are arranged around various window bars and counters, while outside there are another six of the stools along with a bench which runs along under the window. The real draw, however, is the coffee, with a bespoke house-blend all the way from Onyx Coffee Lab in Arkansas. This is joined by more coffee from Onyx, plus a pair of guest roasters, with filter options including batch brew (through the Moccamaster) and pour-over via the V60. Oh, and you’ll find Amsterdam’s first Modbar on the counter.
You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.
Hummingbird is on the eastern side of Spuistraat, the pedestrianised street that runs north-south, parallel to the Singel, the inner-most of Amsterdam’s semi-circular ring of canals. On the corner with Wijdesteeg, Hummingbird faces Spuistraat, a single, large window flanked by two doors, both of which are in use.
The outside seating is arranged around a long, low bench which runs under the window between the two doors, additional seating provided by six low, plastic stools. Inside, there are twelve more stools, although you’d be really packed in if they’re all taken. The counter is at the back, with a four-person window-bar at the front between the two doors. A further four stools are on the right, under the retail shelves, where you’ll find boxes of coffee from house-roaster, Onyx Coffee Lab, and bags from the current guest roasters. The final four stools are on the left, against a row of storage cupboards and a retail selection of coffee equipment.
I visited twice, first on Sunday evening, just before closing time, and again on Monday afternoon, making a quick stop en-route to the station. Both times Hummingbird was busy, with plenty of people packed into the small interior and a regular stream of customers, mostly buying bags of coffee.
Hummingbird is a multi-roaster, the offering based around a bespoke house-blend from Onyx, all the shots pulled on Amsterdam’s first Modbar. When it comes to filter, Onyx is joined by two guest roasters, both from the UK during my visit, with Manchester’s Blossom Coffee Roasters joined by Edinburgh’s Obadiah Coffee. There’s a choice of a daily batch brew, or you can have a pour-over through the V60.
I last saw Onyx in the hopper in Niedlov’s Cafe & Bakery in Chattanooga, so was intrigued to find it in Amsterdam. Naturally I had to try the house-blend as an espresso, being rewarded with an interesting, complex shot, with a pleasing touch of acidity.
Sadly I didn’t have time to linger since the staff were already bringing in the stools from outside, so I popped back the following day en-route to the station, when I had a V60 to go in my Frank Green Ceramic. This was made with the Pajal, a washed coffee from Guatemala, roasted by Obadiah. A lovely, rich, well-rounded coffee, this developed fruity notes as it cooled, proving to be a highlight of an otherwise stressful train journey from Amsterdam to Antwerp which involved a three train detour via Breda thanks to high winds closing the direct high-speed line.
My final act, before leaving Amsterdam, was to present Hummingbird with a bag of the Bookkisa, an Ethiopian coffee from Portland’s Tandem Coffee Roasters, the last of the coffee that I’d picked up on my previous trip to New England.
|SPUISTRAAT 217 •1012 VN AMSTERDAM • NETHERLANDS|
|www.hummingbird.amsterdam||+31 (0) 653406997|
|Monday||09:00 – 17:00||Roaster||Onyx + Guests (espresso + filter)|
|Tuesday||09:00 – 17:00||Seating||Stools, Window-Bar; Bench, Stools (outside)|
|Wednesday||09:00 – 17:00||Food||Cake|
|Thursday||09:00 – 17:00||Service||Order at Counter|
|Friday||09:00 – 17:00||Payment||Cards Only|
|Saturday||10:00 – 18:00||Wifi||No|
|Sunday||10:00 – 18:00||Power||No|
|Chain||No||Visits||12th, 13th March 2023|
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