Type of Place: Cafe
Location: Vrijthof 15; 6211 LD Maastricht
We always call it “the ostrich place” because I can’t pronounce the name, but In Den Ouden Vogelstruys is actually a famous cafe that some believe is the oldest in Maastricht. The building with the golden ostrich on it has been around since 1309 and it is believed that some sort of food was served out of this building as early at the 1700s. The name itself comes from an ostrich egg reliquary that was kept in the St. Servatius Church. Exotic in its day, the shell drew pilgrims from all over to see it.
In Den Ouden Vogelstruys is a typical Dutch cafe located directly on the Vrijthof. It is very popular with locals and tourists alike, which can sometimes make it difficult to find a table. I’ve only been there for coffee, but it has a nice atmosphere and the inside is cozy and dark for those days when it’s too cold or rainy to be outside. It is also the only cafe on the Vrijthof with a menu in the local dialect rather than Dutch. Fortunately it isn’t too difficult to figure out. Next time I visit, I’ll be sure to try the vlaai.