From a underground smokers-den to a coffeeshop empire. The Bulldog’s success-story reads like an American dream and as such could have filled an episode of Oprah. The Bulldog No. 90 was the first coffeeshop in Amsterdam and laid the benchmark for the contemporary coffeeshop. What once began in a cellar, has grown into an ironclad trade-name with five locations and a hotel in Amsterdam, locations in Canada and a merchandising line. Beware of the Bulldog!
It is 1970, the hay-days of the hippie era. Henk’s father runs a sex-shop in the red-light area. In the cellar Henk smokes hash with friends and sells the odd bit to other people who want to try some. He can see the need people have to be able to sit and smoke in a relaxed environment. When he takes over the shop from his father, in 1975, he dumps the porn videos in the canal and transforms the business into the very first coffeeshop in Amsterdam.
How we started...
In 1970 Henk de Vries sold his first African Grass in matchboxes at the 'Kralings Bos' pop festival in Holland. How could he have known that this would result in a company known worldwide many years later.
How we got our name...
On December 17 th , 1975 , Henk emptied the contents of his fathers sex-shop into one of Amsterdam 's famous canals. Now he had a place for his latest experiment, the world's first coffeeshop. But what should he call it? The answer came to him in the shape of Joris, his four legged friend.