I think stopovers are nice. I like better being a traveller than a tourist, and spending some hours at an airport gives me a great time watching people, sampling local food and getting a glimpse into the area's culture.
Schiphol airport outside Amsterdam is one of the airports I have visited the most. Being a hub for KLM airlines, Schiphol sees a lot of passengers changing planes on their way to a new destination. There are always somebody to meet and talk to, and having a drink or four at one of the bars or restaurants guarantees an interesting conversation.
This time I had nearly two hours to spend at Schiphol. As usual I ended up at the Het Paleis bar, which is also a fine place for snacks and small courses. While wine drinkers have a lot to choose from, there are only three draught beers at Het Paleis at the moment. I chose to leave the Heineken pale lager alone, and I started up with an ale from the Belgian Palm brewery.
Palm Ale is a beer that I was very fond of two years ago. This time I was a little bit disappointed. In the glass this was a nearly coppercoloured beer with some carbonation and a medium sized head. In the nose I felt some caramel and sweetness. The caramel was assertive in the mouth with some sweetness and a watery feeling. Unfortunately there was also a metallic taste in the beer, so I was not satisfied with this half litre of Palm.
The third draught beer available was from the Dutch Brand brewery. I visited the southern part of The Netherlands some years ago, so I have had my share of pale lagers from Brand as it was the local brewery. The Brand lagers are not exciting lagers, but they do their trick in warm weather when you are thirsty. At Het Paleis thet could offer Brand Dubbelbock, which was a new beer to me. In the glass this copper coloured beer had nearly no carbonation and a fine, large head. The beer had aromas of plums, while there was caramel and grapes in the mouth with a tiny touch of vodka. I liked this strong beer, and I hope to find it again elsewhere. Brand Dubbelbock is to be recommended!
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