A warning about Amsterdam Coffeeshops

coffeeshop amsterdam

I didn’t sleep much on the flight to Amsterdam from London so one of the first things I did was to pop into a coffeeshop and grab an old fashioned cup of coffee. I reckon a mug of Joe would warm me up and give me the caffeine hit to see all the sights Amsterdam has to offer.

smoking room

The first sense that something wasn’t quite right was the wonderful smell wafting tantalizingly out of the coffeeshops. It smelled herbal but it’s not cigarettes. I didn’t think much of it – if people wanted to smoke cigars or whatever it was they smoked over in the Netherlands, they’re free to do so.

coffeeshop menu

I entered the coffeeshop and looked at the menu in confusion. Super Lemon Haze? White Widow? Amnesia Haze? Afgani Polm?

cannabis strains

The coffee beans in Amsterdam sure has some weird ass names. I figured it was a direct Dutch to English translation so I just pointed to one that won some kind of award in 2009 and the nice person behind the counter showed me the product.

amnesia haze

It looked more like tea than coffee but perhaps that’s what coffee looks like over here. It’s my first time here so what the hell. There is another type of coffee which looks more like coffee though so I ordered that instead.

weighing hash

It came as a huge shock to me when it came to my table. It’s called Nepal First Cream and it came in a sticky goo that you’re supposed to crumble it into a smoking device (which I later learned is called a bong) and light it up.

nepal first cream hash

I was horrified! The proverbial light bulb came on and I realized what I was being offered. Cannabis! Hash! The travesty of it all! I couldn’t believe it and stormed out of the coffeeshop with righteous anger and my head held high with the THC laden hashish left untouched on the table.

Imagine that! Hmph! What has the world come to? action

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93 thoughts on “A warning about Amsterdam Coffeeshops

  1. LOLOL!! yea..the travesty….. damn those dutch people! Trying to poison their innocent tourists!

    Tricking poor you by letting you think you are offered tea!!! How dare they!

  2. So was it good sh*t? :) What was the name of the award winning strain that you purchased? I assumed it was a previous CC winner?

    • You know how they warn people that Amsterdam stuff is REALLY strong?

      It’s true. It’s very strong, lots of THC goodness. I think I had something similar in Melbourne before – also very strong stuff, but this trumps it all.

      The Cannabis Cup 2009 winner is Super Lemon Haze (which snagged the 2008 award too and with good reason). Nice sativa strain, happy and chill.

      I liked the OG18 too for a more indica feel – it won the Indica Cup – this is strong and mellow, and being indica more suitable for night.

      Nepal First Cream is the hash pictured above, would say it’s above average but not the strongest. Peferred Afgan Polm intead. :)

  3. Yeah incredible it’s legalized to to do that there.. no looking over your shoulder for the boys in blue. A stark contrast to other parts of the world eg. Singapore.

    • A stark contrast to Malaysia too. You can smoke up in legitimate coffeeshops and grab a space cake and space muffin while you’re at it!

      There is a maximum buy of 5 grams from each coffee shop though, although even the seasoned smoker would find it difficult to try everything at that amount. :)

      It’s good to hook up with other people so you can try a range of wonderful strains with the minimum buy (differs according to coffeeshops).

      White widow is another one worth mentioning. I liked it.

    • Unfortunately not. :( :( :(
      I saw a lot of interesting names on the departures of EasyJet while flying from London to Amsterdam. I wanted to go to all the European destinations especially Eastern and Northern. :(
      Next time when I have more time. =D
      Spend a year backpacking or something. Still not too late to do that…if I win the lottery or something. :S

  4. HB, I heard Armsterdam pretty easy on drugs. Were you not in the Blue Light District where selling and buying sex is so easy? It one different country.

    • Oh no! They have a very tough stance against “hard drugs” so if people approach you wanting to sell you MDMA, heroin and all that – you should always refuse. I got approached one night.

      Amsterdam tolerates only certain stuff like cannabis (available in coffeeshops) and magic mushrooms (available in smartshops). Other stuff is pretty much off limits, legally. :)

  5. Glad to hear u had a good time there bro. Did you get a chance to eat some of the brownies and shrooms to go along with the uh, coffee that you had? Would be pretty cool if you had done a trip report on your experiences ala veritas heh heh :)

  6. Beautiful satire. What has this world come to? Why have they not bring such coffeeshops to our land yet? Nescafe and Marlboro are getting boring.

  7. poor you – to be deceived so deviously, especially when all you wanted was a simple hit of caffeine! =P

    although to be honest i’d be more than happy to include magic mushrooms in my daily dietary requirements…

    • Heh! Yeah, curses! ;)

      Their magic mushrooms is pretty good too…basically the smartshops always carry the ready to eat 15 gram packs – there’s 4 different types and “strengths”. Quite intense. :)

  8. HB! Nice trip, im sure you had some fun. I can’t really see the menu and you say the prices are expensive, but what is the quantity you are buying? It says “Northern Lights for 8.50” is that like a pre-rolled joint or a weighed amount? Just curious as ive never been to Amsterdam….


    • It’s a great trip (pun intended). :)

      It’s all weighted amounts – can’t remember the minimum buy of that particular coffeeshop, think it was 1 gram or something like that. Some strains have a higher minimum buy though but by law the maximum buy per person is 5 grams.

      There are pre-rolled joints (with tobacco) and pre-rolled joints (pure cannabis) but I tried one of those and prefered to buy pure in weight.

      Hope that helps Zach!

      Space cakes and muffins are also available.

      • Yeah the prices are usually per gram. It’s not cheap, but the guarantee of a minimum quality makes the experience entirely different from any purchase in a prohibition country.

        Unfortunately some coffeeshops will not be entirely upfront. If they don’t display all their types of coffee, then the way to avoid being ripped off is – for example – to ask to see two or three different types. Because if you just take the most expensive without checking, they may give you a lesser quality one and you won’t know. So, if you ask to see cheaper coffee, medium coffee, and best coffee – they’re forced to lay them out for you. And you can pick what you like.

        But a respectable place will not require that. But don’t assume that because it’s openly sold (not technically legal though) that some won’t try to cheat you.

        • Yeah good advice there. I look at every single one of their products and go to the more reputable coffeeshops as recommended by independent sites. Also noticed that not all space cakes/muffins are of the same strength, but then again it’s hard to measure exactly but there are remarkable differences between the ones sold at tourist places and the ones locals go to. :)

        • The stuff we smoke in Malaysia is commonly known as schwag – basically shit weed. There are very low grade AK-47 varients and if you know some people, just about the same stuff you can get in Amsterdam but that is rare, expensive and they are unwilling to sell unless you’re a personal friend.

          The compact shit we get over here can’t even compare to the stuff in Amsterdam.

          1. No visible THC crystals
          2. Dry and it takes a lot of tokes to get there

          I don’t know what strain exactly we get in Malaysia but the lack of THC crystals (which is abundant in the good stains of cannabis in Amsterdam) is disappointing. Even Aussie weed has THC crystals – looks like methamphetamine but it’s plant based THC.

          I’ll show a high res macro photo in castitas.com as well as a video.

          I was impressed with a single hit from a cone in Amsterdam – the first toke got me stoned – this is what they call the One Hit Shit (TM).

          While over here, you’ll need at least several cones smoked in quick sucession – and it can’t even compare with one hit of the good stuff in Amsterdam, not even close. :)

  9. Lol…dude..you are such an arse…you walked out issit? No wonder it has been raining bulls and cows here!!!!!!!!!!! How are you? Still travelling the globe i see…about time to pitch your own travel show you think?

    • Yeah, I walked out. Was offended to be offered drugs. ;)


      Yup, but that’s the last of it. I’m back to Malaysia now. I wish I could be in a travel show, now that would be something I would drop everything for!

  10. That explains the resignation!! I`d love to be a crew in your production should it kick in. Would help me a bunch for my filmstudies next year.

  11. haha….u know i know whether u got avoid those… :)

    btw i dont do drugs as been asked few times but manage to avoids…anwhow i still enjoy the scent of weeds as i work in kl last time my house owner,his brother n my roomate are fulltime on weed…the apartment nvr without weed…im the cleanest among all…morning,noon,evening and nite thre sure someone smoking weed..haha

    • Heh! Yeah, I know a couple of people like that too. Wake and bake, first thing in the morning. I used to do it in uni too, makes the day a whole lot better. You’re less grumpy for one. :)

    • Heh! Indeed bro! I really enjoyed Amsterdam and to be honest I can’t wait to go back there. The next time I go will be during the High Times Cannabis Cup – I missed it by a few weeks coz I had to come back and go to Korea for a team building trip. :(

    • It is awesome stuff indeed! I had come across stuff like this in Aussie, was in Melbourne then and Victoria has a relatively blase attitude towards personal cannabis use coz the drug squad has more important stuff to do (unlike in Malaysia).

      However, Amsterdam is the place to be if you want to try multiple strains of cannabis and hash – found out that good quality hash will burn by itself and can be smoked in a bong or pipe.

      The space muffins and cakes are awesome too! However, eating THC and smoking it is two different things and I got really fucked up one night after consuming several cakes and muffins, smoking and eating shrooms. Just keep in mind that eating stuff takes about 45 min to kick in (depending on your stomach content) and you’ll be fine.

      It is indeed fresh and GREAT quality stuff over there. Hail Amsterdam! =D

    • Hmm…actually it’s impossible to be physically addicted to cannabis – physical addiction is the domain of opiates, benzodiazepines and to a lesser extent, alcohol.

      It is also less damaging when compared to alcohol.

      I wish our government would be more lenient about cannabis use but the state of affairs is, I seriously doubt it. :(

  12. Hehe, I liked this tongue in cheek post.

    The funny thing is that coffeeshops usually do good coffee too. Not like Starbucks style but more like Italian style.

    The machines they use cost over 10,000 Euros so you shouldn’t be disappointed :)

    • Thanks! :)

      I think I did another one on space cakes but that was overdoing the angle a little. Heh!

      I’ve actually had coffee (as in the brew that contains caffeine) in coffeeshops and cafes and I agree – it’s good stuff. =D

      • Nice! Have you ever gone back?

        I was thinking of going back earlier this year, but went to Germany and France instead. I’ve stopped smoking weed since I met my better half but I still like it. I would smoke it if it were legal, but it’s not over here in Malaysia.

    • Haha! Sorry, didn’t see this comment until now.

      You know I was kidding right? I have been smoking cannabis since I was 15 and at that time (2008-2012) have been a daily smoker – this was the main reason I went to Amsterdam. :)

      I like their cannabis but their ice hash is amazing, close to 70% (some say 80-90% THC) – it’s also called “ice-o-lator hash” and it will put even the most experienced stoner down, it’s truly wonderful stuff if you have a high tolerance.

      I was in various coffeeshops and smart shops every day I was there – wake and bake with a couple of backpacker friends.

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